Learning about our local history was a walk in the park with the Prime Theatre production, Painting the Past.
Painting the Past tells the story of Sir John St John 1st Baronet whose spirit is trapped at Lydiard Park unable to let go of the pain and loss of his life. The young time travelling painters who ‘swish, brush, etch and sketch’ celebrate the art he left behind, informing him that in 2019 people will come to admire the monuments and paintings in the church and learn about his family.
There was a courtly Elizabethan dance on the front lawn and a ghostly civil war re-enactment in the woods and my favourite scene – the History and Hers rap about the St John women who appear on the polyptych in the church.
The well-researched and historically accurate production was performed in the parkland as part of the HLF funded St Mary’s Church Conservation Project. The young actors gave a mature, thoughtful and fun performance. Painting the Past deserves to be seen again and the Friends of Lydiard Park Trustees are hoping it could be a feature of the Christmas party.