RATS get the nod for its entertaining theatrical work

Ribchester Amateur Theatrical Society won four NODA awards
Ribchester Amateur Theatrical Society won four NODA awards

An amateur dramatics group has been honoured with four gongs at a prestigious awards ceremony.

Ribchester Amateur Theatrical Society (RATS) achieved four wins out of eight nominations at the annual National Operatic and Dramatics Association (NODA) awards dinner.

Paul Bell won RATS’ first award of the evening for Best Lead Actor in the youth section for Don’t Count Your Chickens.

Martin Smith scooped Best Actor Male in Panto for his performance as Long John Silver in Treasure Island. This award marked the third year on the row that RATS have won this gong.

William Thomas, who - alongside Vicky Kinneavy - wrote, directed and produced Treasure Island, collected the award for Best Panto on behalf of the society.

Unknown to RATS, two further nominations were announced on the evening of the awards.

One was for Sue Cronshaw in Time Of My Life for Best Actor Female in a Drama and the other was The Rabbits Of Sandleford Warren for the Best Ensemble.

While Sue lost out, The Rabbits Of Sandleford Warren, directed and produced by Viki Mason and Charlotte Green, beat its competition to win its sole award.

This award is retained by RATS having been won last year for Blue Remembered Hills.

William Thomas, spokesman for the group, said: “This experience marks an achievement that the whole society and Ribchester can be proud of.”

RATS is celebrating its 45th anniversary on February 18 in Ribchester Village Hall, from 7.30pm.

There will be a cabaret, supper, bar, disco, 60’s/70s fancy dress is optional. Tickets, at £5, must be bought from 01254 878530.