Theatre review: Not Just Fish and Ships

02 August 2019

jo wheeler

Pat Ashworth’s new play Not Just Fish and Ships, set in the year 664 as the delegates arrive for the Synod of Whitby, is described as a “portrait of monastic life in Anglo-Saxon England” and “a courtroom drama with a light touch”. It is being presented in six sacred spaces, and sold out for the first three performances. It opened at Southwell Cathedral, and played at St Peter and All Saints, Nottingham, whose Rector, the Revd Christopher Harrison, said: “To bring such an episode of our history to life in such a well-researched and vivid manner, blending humour, theology, church history, and even some implicit comments on church politics today, was truly remarkable.” Venues this autumn will include Peterborough Cathedral and Hull Minster. Booking details at

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