The Herdwick sheep is synonymous with the history and landscape of the Lake District, the place where the Bread and Butter Theatre company was formed over 25 years ago. As one of the UK’s leading street theatre companies, performing at events all over the world, we have for many years, dreamt of creating our own performing “flock” of sheep. Further inspiration came during lockdown from bike rides that took us from our home in Ulverston into the heart of the Lakes, where we were surrounded by the iconic Herdwick sheep with their lovable faces as they came down to lamb in Spring. This gave us the push we needed to take the project forward. In 2021 we received funding from The Culture Recovery Fund to collaborate with master prop makers / puppeteers The Flying Buttresses, to produce a family of Herdwicks, two adult sheep pushing a pram full of lambs. The walkabout performance incorporates mime, dance, sound effects and music. The aim is to not only to entertain people in our normal locations such as town centres and festivals but to reach new audiences at rural events such as county shows and agricultural fairs. Our Herdwicks can bring a flavour of the Lake District to all corners of the UK and the world.
As a company we felt it was very important that Flock should be promoted within the beautiful landscape of the Lake District and where better than at the magnificent Yew Tree Farm near Coniston, where we got to meet and learn about the Herdwick sheep in their natural environment at the “Herdwick Experience”. The stunning landscape of the farm will form the backdrop to our publicity and will “heft” our human Herdwicks to the Coniston fells.
Flock will be premiered at Another Fine Fest in Ulverston, Cumbria on Saturday 18 June before heading out to pastures new.