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‘They All Came Tumbling Down’ the story of the notorious Netherley flats is coming to Valley Community Theatre

12 months ago

‘They All Came Tumbling Down’ the story of the notorious Netherley flats is coming to Valley Community Theatre
Valley Community Theatre

They All Came Tumbling Down tells the story of the campaign and is brought to the Valley Community Theatre with support from Liverpool City Council’s Mayoral fund.

They All Came Tumbling Down is coming to Valley Community Theatre in Netherley this August.

In the 1960s and 1970s, the Urban Renewal Strategy for Liverpool saw the construction of 32,000 new houses in central and outlying areas like Netherley.

It as a time of hope for many working-class families, looking forward to their first new home. The dream soon turned sour, however, for those allocated a place in the soon-to-be-notorious Netherley flats. They became known as Alactraz to the families who had to live with their uninspiring concrete architecture and poor design.

Their struggle, firstly to get the Council to address their problems, then, eventually, to get the Flats themselves demolished, will be told in a new play by playwright Tom Mclennan at Valley Community Theatre this Summer.

Credit: Valley Community Theatre
Credit: Valley Community Theatre

The location of the theatre – within throwing distance of where the flats once stood – makes it an ideal venue for the telling of the story, a fact that Martin Ball, Director of Valley Community Theatre is happy to point out.

“As a community theatre,” Martin says, “connecting with the history of the area is important for us. The fact that the story is also a fascinating one is all to the good. We like producing exciting as well as relevant theatre.”

The play is based upon the memories of members of the Flat Dwellers’ Action Group, a local pressure group made up of angry tenants, whose campaign of direct action forced the authorities to think again and eventually led to the demolition of the flats and re-allocation of the families there.

“What I loved about meeting the women involved,” the writer, Tom Mclennan, recalls, “was the humour with which they told their stories. We’ve tried to bring that out in the play. The conditions they experienced in the flats were harrowing but the fight to do something about it obviously expanded their horizons – to the extent that they all became important figures in the careers they pursued after the events.”

The show will be performed on Sat 5 and Sun 6 August 2023, tickets are £7/£5.

For more info on Valley Community Theatre click here.

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