Entertainment & arts
The latest entertainment and arts news, including coverage of the Mowlem, the Swanage Drama Company and the music, film and arts festivals in Swanage and Purbeck.
BBC Antiques Roadshow to come to Swanage Swanage Pier and Prince Albert Gardens are to host the popular BBC TV programme Antiques Roadshow presented by Fiona Bruce.
Seed of an idea blooms at Durlston art exhibition An arts project which was expected to run for just 15 days is to celebrate its 20th anniversary with a major exhibition at Durlston in Swanage.
Swanage born Hot Fuzz film director becomes patron of The Mowlem An award winning UK film director has been revealed as the first ever patron of the Swanage theatre in Dorset after a chance meeting in his home town.
Still rocking it at 96, Sir David opens his last BBC series at Old Harry Sir David Attenborough will open his final BBC series from Old Harry to celebrate the best of British natural history.
Swanage Jazz Festival offers ticket discount to local residents Building on last year's success, Swanage Jazz Festival 2023 will be returning to its traditional home of Sandpit Field and offering a discount to Swanage residents.
Dorset arts charity brings symphony orchestra to Swanage The Mowlem on Swanage’s seafront is to host an appropriately nautical performance by the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra.
Swanage Blues Festival joins forces with The Mowlem For the first time in its 22 year history., the Swanage Blues Festival is finally to collaborate with The Mowlem.
New film released about Swanage’s sea swimmers The women who swim in Swanage Bay, star in a new film which follows them as they prepare to plunge into the world of theatre performance - WATCH THE FILM
Chance to come and sing in Swanage with top musicians New dates have been announced for the opportunity to tune up the vocal cords and get expert tuition from distinguished church musicians at St Mary’s Church.
Swanage’s panto is back at The Mowlem – oh yes it is! Robbing the rich to give to the poor is the topical theme of this year’s Swanage panto Robin Hood and the Babes in the Wood.
The Mowlem getting its act together for 2023 After a number of false starts, there’s a new drive to breathe a fresh lease of life into Swanage’s much loved but architecturally controversial theatre.
Purbeck company sees business boom over panto season Twin brothers from Wareham are responsible for putting the magic into no fewer than 30 major UK stage productions this Christmas
Lawrie drums up support for new Swanage samba band Music master Lawrie Sandford hopes to bring some Brazillian warmth to winter nights in Swanage by starting up a local samba drum band
Delve into Swanage’s history as centre opens its doors for weekend For the first time in three years, the Swanage History Centre is opening its archive to the public so they can find out more about Purbeck’s past.
BBC faces Lulworth ban after Doctor Who ‘deceit’ at Durdle Door The BBC may be banned from filming at Lulworth Cove again after it was accused of irresponsibility by showing Doctor Who regenerating on top of Durdle Door.
Top author from Wareham gives boost to local library Successful children’s author Rachel Bright has cleared a space in her busy autumn diary to support Wareham Library.
Swanage star charged extra to take home Best Actress award Swanage actress Nicole Faraday has picked up the biggest award of her life at an international film festival - and was promptly charged excess baggage fees to bring it back ...
Swanage festival is best value in UK as entrance fee stays at 2012 price The best-value entrance ticket in live music events anywhere in the UK has just gone on sale in Swanage - and it hasn’t risen in cost since 2012.
Historic maps to go on display in Swanage An exhibition featuring a private collection of maps and charts of Dorset, the world and the universe, is to open for just two days at All Saints Church Hall in ...
Local musical talent on show at ‘feelgood’ Swanage concert Despite predictions of rain, the sun shone on the Music by the Sea concert in Swanage in memory of Will and Henry, two local lads who died tragically young.
Dramatic Purbeck viewpoint gets pop up art installation The ancient landscape at Swyre’s Head near Kingston in Dorset is temporarily getting a modern addition called The Wind Hive.
Summer exhibition of art opens in Swanage to help ‘boost morale’ The Isle of Purbeck Arts Club summer exhibition is back with artwork and poetry plus a chance to find out more about the club.
Songwriter returns to Swanage for ‘the most beautiful views’ Folk legend Richard Digance is making a return visit to The Mowlem in Swanage, a theatre he describes as having ‘the most beautiful views from a dressing room’ anywhere in ...
Psychedelic orchestra cycles from France to Corfe Castle for concert A very unusual orchestra is to arrive in Corfe Castle by bike, as part of a musical tour that started in France and will end in Dorset.
Swanage painters are back with a splash With plenty of new artwork, Swanage Painting Club’s summer exhibition has opened - the first time in two years.
It’s no joke – Mr Punch signs three year deal with Swanage Town Council The traditional Punch and Judy puppet show is back on Swanage Beach and the mayor dropped by to deliver some good news.
Music fans expected to fill town for Swanage Jazz Festival The popular appeal of jazz by the sea means there’s just a few tickets left for the 31st Swanage Jazz Festival.
New royal work of art unveiled in Swanage for Platinum Jubilee To celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, a new mural created by local school children, has been officially unveiled by the Swanage Town Mayor - WATCH THE UNVEILING.
Swanage sea show goes swimmingly well Bathed in sunshine, an extraordinary performance of words, dance and swimming took place in Swanage on midsummer’s evening - WATCH VIDEO.
Wild swimming just got wilder with unique Swanage show An extraordinary double bill of theatre about swimming in the sea is to take place on midsummer’s evening in Swanage.
New artistic talent given chance to shine at Purbeck Art Weeks After a turbulent few years for creative talent, the premier art festival in Swanage and across Purbeck is providing a platform for new artists to exhibit.
Massive month of art kicks off in Swanage Over the next four weeks, artists in Swanage will be opening their doors to visitors - first as part of Dorset Art Weeks then swiftly followed by Purbeck Art Weeks.
Corfe Castle art gallery branches out A new arts hub - based around the old Boilerhouse Gallery - has been launched in Corfe Castle with exhibitions, music and spoken word events planned throughout the summer.
Getting back in the swing – a series of summer concerts for Swanage A programme of concerts in Swanage, aiming to raise a smile as well as money for charity, are hoping to hit the right note this summer.
Lost BBC comedy tape found in Swanage Museum archive A recording of a long-lost BBC comedy show has been discovered among archive tapes belonging to Swanage museum.
Perfect marriage of pencil and metal at Durlston’s latest exhibition Finely detailed wildlife pencil drawings and exquisite silver and copper metal work, combine to make up the new exhibition at Durlston Country Park in Swanage.
New Swanage musical rolls off production line after three years Swanage Musical Theatre Company is back after a three year gap with a production of Made in Dagenham, the show about women factory workers and their fight for equal pay ...
Historic aerial photos of Swanage go online for first time Fascinating aerial photos have been newly published online by Historic England including hundreds capturing Purbeck from the skies over the last 100 years.
Follow the yellow brick road to Corfe Castle! Members of Corfe Castle amateur dramatic group Double Act are hoping it will be third time lucky for their latest production, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.
Plenty of drama going on at The Mowlem A weekend of gripping theatre and film is planned for The Mowlem in Swanage - one production in support of the local school and the other for Ukraine.
Crime novelist relaunches author events at Swanage Library An award-winning crime writer, who features Dorset as the setting for her novels, will be talking about her writing at Swanage Library.
Swanage Blues Festival charts its way through ‘uncertain times’ The Blues Festival is back in Swanage with a stomping line up of acts and it's been nominated for Festival of the Year by the UK Blues Awards.
Jazz festival returns to Swanage after two year Covid break The line-up has been announced for this year’s Swanage Jazz Festival, back after a two-year absence because of Covid.
Swanage Panto performers say: Covid? It’s behind us…! This year’s Swanage panto has been the ‘hardest ever’ with illness and positive Covid tests causing one cast member after another to miss rehearsals.
Swanage’s theatre on financial knife edge as Covid impacts again With audiences staying away due to renewed fears over Covid, The Mowlem is launching a winter appeal to raise £5,000.
D-Day tank at Studland beach for documentary filming The history series for National Geographic is due to be broadcast in autumn 2022.
Swanage Rep company gets Covid grant boost The production company behind the Swanage Rep theatre season at The Mowlem has won a government grant, raising hopes of a return next year after the ‘unprecedented and unpredictable’ impact ...
Swanage-based radio station scoops silver at national awards Community radio station, Purbeck Coast 101.2 FM located on Swanage Pier, has achieved recognition in the prestigious 2021 Community Radio Awards, less than three years since its launch.
Firework extravaganza set to light up the Purbeck sky Bonfire night is back with a bang with the spectacular annual event at Swanage and Wareham Rugby Ground returning after a gap of two years because of Covid.
Route into Purbeck remains closed as work to clear 10 trees starts The main road into Wareham and through to Swanage is expected to remain blocked all day as the huge task of clearing the road starts - SEE PHOTOS AND VIDEO
Film festival returns to Purbeck for silver anniversary After a year away, the longest running rural film festival in the UK – the Purbeck Film Festival – is back!
Local community gets to see Swanage’s theatre in a new light A multi-sensory backstage tour of The Mowlem in Swanage has been a surprise hit giving people a chance to peek behind the scenes.
New Lawrence of Arabia film made in Purbeck finally gets its premiere The release of the film Lawrence: After Arabia was delayed in 2020 but there will be special screenings this autumn across Dorset including Swanage.
Prizes awarded to support young artists across Purbeck The Isle of Purbeck Arts Club has awarded cash prizes to the latest winners of its annual children and young people’s art competition, made possible by a generous legacy.
Blues party returns to Swanage after Covid intermission The much-loved Swanage Blues Festival shuffles into town this weekend with an eclectic mix of musicians and singers - the first since March 2020.
Purbeck Coast 101.2 FM nominated for radio awards Local community radio station, Purbeck Coast 101.2 FM, has been shortlisted in the annual national Community Radio Awards.
Swanage Town Band back at new bandstand for Chadwick fundraiser Bright sunshine greeted Swanage Town Band’s first performance at the bandstand since it was refurbished - WATCH VIDEO.
Singing in Swanage making a comeback after months of silence The director of music at St Mary’s Church in Swanage, is urging everyone to ‘Come and Sing’ again after Covid stopped everyone singing in public.
Swanage theatre director brings extraordinary show to the Lighthouse After a long 18 months, Swanage-based artistic director Claire Hodgson says it’s incredible to be putting on a stage show again.
Purbeck Art Weeks’ Rollington Barn exhibition is back! With plenty of work produced during lockdown, the Rollington Barn exhibition near Corfe Castle is bursting with paintings, photography, prints, ceramics and greetings cards.
TV soap actress takes on Rita role at The Mowlem in Swanage Coronation Street actress Kimberley Hart Simpson is starring in a new production of Educating Rita at The Mowlem as part of the Swanage Rep series.
What’s on in Swanage in September 2021? With so many events having been postponed due to Covid, there’s lots happening in September 2021 in Swanage.
“Best ever” Swanage Rep show finally goes ahead A show described as ‘the best production’ ever by Swanage Rep finally makes its debut on stage after a week’s delay.
Popular Swanage Lifeboat Lego movie gets a sequel Following the runaway success of last year’s Swanage Lifeboat Week Lego animation, 12 year old Christian has now released a follow up movie.
Dramatic Dorset coastline captured in new exhibition by Swanage artist Much acclaimed watercolour painter, Cathy Veale is exhibiting her work at the Fine Foundation Gallery at Durlston Country Park in Swanage.
Top trombonist returns to Swanage for concert cancelled last year It's a special homecoming for a talented local musician who became a professor at the Royal Academy of Music at just 25.
Timing it just right – Purbeck Valley Folk Festival gets to go ahead With huge relief and excitement for the musicians and organisers, the Purbeck Valley Folk Festival 2021 has kicked off, despite plenty of other musical events being cancelled.
Swanage Rep show postponed after positive Covid test The opening nights of The Princess and the Pauper at The Mowlem in Swanage have been delayed after a production team member tested positive for Covid.
Musical with sign language set for national tour after Swanage debut A brand-new reworking of a classic story which integrates sign language into the performance gets its debut at The Mowlem theatre in Swanage.
Swanage artists join new exhibition and raise money for charity An idea born out of lockdown has led to an exhibition of work by more than 30 artists from Swanage and the wider Purbeck area.
Simon and Garfunkel tribute act returns to Swanage Stopping off in Swanage before appearing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, the show Simon & Garfunkel Through The Years is at The Mowlem.
Aled Jones in Swanage for filming of BBC’s Songs of Praise Hundreds of residents and visitors flocked to Prince Albert Gardens for the first Songs of Praise filming of hymn singing for 18 months - SEE PHOTOS.
Iconic Purbeck landscapes captured in new exhibition at Durlston Well-known landscape photographer Andy Farrer took inspiration from his local surroundings for an exhibition showcasing his new work.
Warning of traffic delays ahead of Camp Bestival at Lulworth A temporary one-way road system, reduced speed limits and parking restrictions are to be put in place to help manage traffic in Purbeck, ahead of the music festival at Lulworth ...
Little Horrors relaunch The Mowlem theatre in Swanage Live theatre is back at The Mowlem and first up is an exuberant musical production by students from The Swanage School.
Aled Jones and BBC’s Songs of Praise to film in Swanage For the first time in 18 months BBC's Songs of Praise will be recording a congregation and it’s chosen Swanage as its location.
Live music returns to Swanage venues A series of tribute bands are lined up to bring live music back to The Mowlem and Harmans Cross.
“Don’t learn to love your Covid cage” says Purbeck artist An art installation of people in cages has popped up on the top of a hill near Corfe Castle, to shine light on the way Covid has changed our lives.
New art exhibitions open at Durlston for Dorset Art Weeks After months of waiting, artwork is back on display at Durlston Country Park in Swanage, just in time for the start of Dorset Art Weeks.
The Mowlem aims to become Swanage’s “thriving cultural centre” Closed by Covid restrictions since the start of the year, Swanage’s theatre and cinema, The Mowlem has revealed plans to bounce back.
Seahorse sculpture unveiled in Studland amid plans to protect its habitat As moves progress to restore the seahorse’s natural environment in Studland Bay, a local artist has created an eye-catching seahorse sculpture.
Architect plans reveal site design of new Swanage statue A first glimpse of what the new sculpture of local man, Trevor Chadwick will look like when it is installed, has been made public.
Morris Dancing brings “joy and laughter” to Swanage care home Staff at Gainsborough Care Home in Swanage celebrated St George’s Day with Morris Dancing as part of Captain Tom’s 100 Challenge.
Poster by well-known Swanage artist to make up to £2,000 at auction An original poster of Clavell Tower in Kimmeridge, alongside a poster of Bond’s Folly near Creech Grange are set to go under the hammer.
Swanage to feature in TV programmes to celebrate Easter Filming has been taking place in Swanage, including St Mary’s Church, for Christian broadcaster TBNUK.
Purbeck Art Weeks postponed until late summer The annual Purbeck art festival, which usually takes place in May, is to be moved until later in the year due to Covid restrictions.
Swanage Folk Festival to go ahead but jazz festival bows out for 2021 As long as Covid restrictions are lifted as planned, Swanage Folk Festival will take place in September 2021, but the jazz festival has now cancelled until 2022.
Swanage Jazz Festival cancelled in July but may move to later in year A musical medley of jazz, folk and blues could take place in Swanage this autumn as the town's main music festivals may all happen in September.
Big cash boosts for Purbeck community hubs Two Purbeck organisations are set to receive an injection of cash from Dorset Council as part of a grant scheme to support our cultural and community centres in Dorset.
Foundations laid for the Albert Memorial in Swanage The concrete slab has been poured to form part of the base for the Purbeck stone obelisk that is to be reconstructed in Prince Albert Gardens in Swanage.
Sweet gesture by The Mowlem Swanage’s theatre, The Mowlem has decided to share some of its tasty treats, after it was forced to close once again due to the coronavirus lockdown.
Discover Swanage Pier’s amazing wildlife in new exhibition Swanage Pier is offering a rare glimpse of life under its waves with an underwater photography exhibition.
Swanage Mayor backs plan to breathe fresh life into The Mowlem Swanage’s mayor has voiced his full support for a regeneration of the town’s iconic Mowlem theatre.
Early glimpse of the life-size sculpture to grace Swanage seafront Great progress is being made on the statue to remember the Swanage man, who rescued 669 children from Prague in 1939 from German occupation, and the fundraising to pay for ...
The Mowlem reopens after lockdown with a surprise! Love it or hate it, the exterior of Swanage’s theatre likes to be controversial and this Christmas, we've been gifted something unexpected - SEE VIDEO.
Art auction aims to help the homeless through the winter months Purbeck artists are reuniting to help Dorset’s rough sleepers this Christmas following a successful charity art auction in the summer.
100 year old armoured Rolls Royce celebrates birthday with new Tank Museum film Bovington’s Tank Museum has commemorated the 100th anniversary of its oldest running vehicle by releasing a film to watch while the museum is closed under lockdown.
Tune in and spook out to Purbeck Coast 101.2 FM’s Halloween special! The community radio station, Purbeck Coast 101.2 FM, based in Swanage, is broadcasting a Halloween Spooktacular throughout the day and up to the witching hour.
Giant fish art installation catches the attention of Swanage beachgoers With great panache, local artist Eilidh Middleton delivered a message to half term holiday makers about the tragic consequences of overfishing our seas.
The seabed laid bare in Wild Seas exhibition at Durlston Castle In an attempt to reveal the mystery of what lies under the sea along our Jurassic coastline, a new exhibition has just opened.
The Mowlem – despite Covid, the show must go on! Swanage’s independent theatre and cinema, The Mowlem has revealed details of its festive programme scheduled for the run up to Christmas.
Swanage loses one of its nearest multiplexes as Poole Cineworld closes Film fans in Swanage will have to look elsewhere to catch the latest releases as the town loses one of its nearest multiplexes with the temporary closure of Poole’s Cineworld.
Albert Memorial gets planning permission to be re-erected in Prince Albert Gardens After fifty years of neglect, the obelisk that was erected in Swanage to commemorate the life of Prince Albert has been given permission to be rebuilt.
Bringing live music back to Swanage, the Legion hosts first gig since lockdown The Royal British Legion in Swanage takes its first step back into regular live music, with a night of uplifting rhythm and blues with Hugh Budden and Andy Stone.
After six months of lockdown, Mowlem to reopen its doors! After coronavirus forced it to close, The Mowlem theatre in Swanage is to finally reopen with a cinema screening of Matthew Bourne’s ballet, The Red Shoes.
Purbeck lockdown art goes on exhibition The Isle of Purbeck Arts Club members are revealing what they got up to during lockdown in an exhibition - SEE ORIGINAL ART OF LOCAL SCENES
Special celebrations for Purbeck Coast 101.2 FM The community radio station for Swanage and the surrounding area, Purbeck Coast 101.2 FM is marking its first birthday with a special week of broadcasting.
‘That’s the way to do it’ – Punch and Judy returns to Swanage! Refusing to be beaten by a global pandemic, Professor Joe Burns is as pleased as Punch to be back with a socially distanced show
We’ve all got the blues as another Swanage festival is cancelled With the Swanage Blues Festival not until October 2020, there was still a glimmer of hope it may go ahead but now it too has been scuppered.
“Absolutely gutted” says Swanage Carnival team Swanage Carnival should have been in full swing this week but despite the cancellation due to coronavirus, the committee are still hoping to raise a smile.
Durlston art exhibition gets last minute go ahead With most events cancelled, it's a small miracle that Swanage-based artist Tony Kerins' exhibition has opened at Durlston Castle.
Swanage art gallery bucks high street trend While many shops are struggling in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, Purbeck New Wave Gallery opens today in bigger and better premises in the High Street.
Santa gives creative boost to Swanage school kids Funding including a donation from Rotary's Santa sleigh fundraiser, means 150 art goody bags are going to Swanage pupils to get them creative over summer.
Swanage Town Crier wins world’s first virtual town crier competition! Despite stiff international competition, Swanage Town Crier, Andrew Fleming has become the first ever virtual town crier world champion.
Swanage Library to partially reopen with a ‘bag of books’ system Library users will be able to get their hands on real books from Swanage Library as part of a phased reopening.
The Purbeck Gazette keeps going, despite cash crisis A collapse in advertising revenue means The Purbeck Gazette isn’t currently being printed but the June edition is out online from today.
Defying studio closure, Purbeck Coast FM stays on air Despite government guidelines forcing the community radio station to close its studio on Swanage Pier, it’s managed to continue to broadcast throughout the pandemic crisis.
Further blow to Swanage, as Carnival is cancelled With a "heavy heart" organisers say Swanage’s biggest annual event, that brings in over a million pounds into the town, won't go ahead.
Painted pebble mania sweeps Swanage Swanage Bay is famous for its beautiful sandy beach but now pebbles have started to pop up everywhere!
2020 season announcement by Swanage Rep Theatre Company The Swanage Rep Theatre Company says that regretfully, this year's performances are to be postponed.
Latest Durlston art exhibition opens to visitors, but not as planned … ‘A Dorset Wanderland’ hasn’t been cancelled but instead it’s been moved online, to be viewed from an appropriate social distance!
Catch it, archive it, catalogue it – Capture Dorset’s history in the making People in Swanage and across the county, are being sought to keep a diary about the impact of coronavirus on their community.
The Mowlem to close “until further notice” Due to the Government’s coronavirus advice that people should avoid theatres, the Mowlem in Swanage has announced that it's closing from Thursday.
Blues Festival kicks off at the Legion The Swanage Blues Festival got off to a rip-roaring start on Thursday with a brilliant evening of entertainment.
Big Blues party swings into town The 33rd Swanage Blues Festival gets underway this Thursday, with music fans filling the pubs and venues across the town.
Renovation of the Mowlem under consideration, as new board members appointed Three new trustees have been appointed to the Mowlem board and a major renovation project is currently under consideration.
Corfe Castle featured in new Harry Rednapp documentary Harry Rednapp appears on ITV television in a documentary that features him taking part in an archery contest at Corfe Castle.
Foot stomping success for The Swanage School’s production of Fame The musical, Fame, performed by a cast from The Swanage School, played to packed audiences at the Mowlem.
Jazz festival headline acts revealed with bigger vision for 2020 The Swanage Jazz Festival is going to be a three day affair in 2020, boosted by the success of last year’s event.
Opening fanfare for Swanage Bandstand restoration The Swanage Bandstand opening ceremony goes ahead, despite the rain, following a two and a half year restoration programme.
Swanage Carnival 2019 gives more than £28,000 to charity A record number of visitors to the 2019 Swanage Carnival meant £28,000 has been donated to 26 good causes.