Murder mystery is events forerunner

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It was an open and shut case, or was it?

St Cecilia’s Parents Teachers and Friends Association recently produced ‘Who Killed the Pop Star” a comedy murder mystery which was a complete sell out.

Staff from the Chapel Hill School, in Longridge, along with parents and friends spent many a long evening rehearsing for the event.

Headteacher Stephen Tattersall played 80s pop icon Derek Thompson. His twin brother Cuthbert was played by long-suffering assistant head Gary Caulfield.

Mr Caulfield said: “Derek and I were twins, non-identical of course. As children we lived in a very big house with bedrooms far, far apart, which accounts for my Belfast accent and Derek’s Rossendale twang!”

Derek was murdered at the end of Act One by being mauled to death by a Bengal tiger.

The heinous crime was investigated by Scotland Yard’s finest, Insp Leather ,played by Jonathan Procter ,and his YTS sidekick, trainee detective Barton, played by Steve Brayshaw.

The list of suspects was impressive. Was it clueless PA Billie Jean (Janet Wilkinson-head at St Francis, Hill Chapel), organised and efficient Eileen (Chris Stringer head at St Mary’s Chipping) washed up club singer Miracle Le Sash (Kathy O’Grady), Annie Sprinkles (Debbie Liptrot), Geoff Hacking (Brian Kenwright, head of technology at St Cecilia’s), Mrs Wrigley (Angela Verity) the zoo-keeper or did Cuthbert kill his own brother? The clues were many and hilarious as were the 1980s musical references.

Food was on hand courtesy of St Cecilia’s own catering staff and a bar run by Kate Bailey kept the cast and the audience refreshed.

It was a long and entertaining evening, compered superbly by Andy Small, who was the narrator and a body double for Boy George. Anne Seed was the director with sound and light provided by Mark Shepherd of Vertigo Solutions, Longridge.

The event raised £2,000 which is going towards the resurfacing of the school’s outdoor playing surfaces.

Mr Tattersall said: “It was absolutely wonderful to see our hall full of people joined by a common interest in the wellbeing of our school. Since its reconstitution, a great deal of energy and enthusiasm has been expended by the St Cecilia’s PTFA.

“The governing body and I are extremely grateful for everything that the PTFA are doing and are planning to do in the future.

PTFA chairman Liz Hindley said: “This event has been a real team effort between the staff, parents and members of the PTFA committee. I was thrilled with the support this evening received and look forward to building on the success.”