A play by Ian Sharp – About Conscientious Objectors and founders of the Broadbent Theatre

6th December 7.30 and 10th December 4.30 – Remembrance a Play by Ian Sharp – About Conscientious Objectors and founders of the Broadbent Theatre.

An original documentary play written specially for the Broadbent Theatre. The play tells the story of the Conscientious Objectors who set up Pacifist Farm Communities in Legsby and Holton cum Beckering during World War 2. Many of them were involved in the founding of the Broadbent Theatre and many of their families remain active members of the local community today.

In the play the conscientious objectors (the’ conchies’ as the local people called them then) tell their stories mainly in their own words from the interviews many of them later gave. ‘Our aim is simply to tell the truth, as far as that is ever possible, of this remarkable phenomenon at a remarkable time,’ says writer Ian Sharp, ‘but hopefully in a lively, entertaining and thought-provoking way.’ For interested members of the audience there will be a post-show discussion with the cast.

During World War II RAF Wickenby in Lincoln was a hub of military activity from where hundreds of bombing mission were launched.

One thousand and eighty of the young men involved in those missions were killed.

Just a few miles away however, the neighbouring village of Holton cum Beckering, became a hotbed for the Peace Movement.

A group of like minded people gathered together in this farming community, united in one belief – they were not going to fight World War II.

Pacifism was a popular cause for those familiar with the horrors of World War I.

The personal tragedies and loss of WWI made pacifism a popular cause
“The whole story of World War I was so overwhelming that I think many of us said we must never be part of this again,” explains conscientious objector Francis Cammaerts.

The Peace Pledge Union was started by priest Dick Sheppard, who’d been a chaplain to troops in the trenches.

Young men were asked to sign a pledge to renounce war and become conscientious objector, or “conchies” as they were known.

Although farming duties were largely taken over by land girls, replacing the farmers sent away to war, it was also something a conscientious objector could do.