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The Assembly Hall Theatre's panto, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, raises thousands for the Hospice in the Weald

By Angela Cole

Generous panto punters raised more than £7,000 for a local charity during the Christmas and New Year run in Tunbridge Wells.

The funds were raised for the Pembury-based Heart of Kent Hospice at performances of the Assembly Hall Theatre panto Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, which starred Su Pollard of 80s sitcom Hi-de-Hi!

The annual collection came to £7,320.61, raised from bucket collections at the end of each performance during the three-week run.

Su Pollard as the Wicked Queen in the Assembly Hall Theatre's panto

The hospice provides compassionate, individual, holistic and supportive care for patients with a terminal illness, their families, and carers in west Kent and East Sussex. The money raised could pay for pre or post-bereavement counselling sessions for 20 patients or family members who are seeking additional support.

Beth Swarbrigg, from the hospice, said: "The theatre has been supporting Hospice in the Weald for over 18 years and we are delighted that once again the theatre has chosen the Hospice to benefit from their annual pantomime collection.

The cast of the Assembly Hall Theatre's panto, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

"The generosity of the audiences for every performance is staggering will make a huge difference to the patients, families, and carers supported by Hospice in the Weald each and every year. It costs over £7 million to run the hospice and with less than 11% of our funding provided by the government, we are dependent on the generosity of the community we serve to provide our vital services."

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