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Wiltshire Community History

Folk Play Information

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TitleChristmas is a-coming Mumming
Alternative Title
WordsWildridge, Chris
Collected FromPotter, Pip
Occupation
Age
Date
LocationMere
CountyWiltshire
Source PrimaryMere Amateur Dramatic Society script
Source Secondary
Recording
 
The Play
Characters

Dr. Homeo'my [White Coat, Bag?, Hat Script] [Pip Potter]
Old Hollow / Tosspot [Shabby, Genteel, Tankard, Cap?] [Bryan Sheppard]
Dame Deadmaid [Bonnet, Apron, Dress, Boots] [Ann Rich]
Great Alf Stour [Tunic, Leggings, Helmet, Sword] [Adrienne Howell]
Giant Mega [Oz Hat, Dagger, Cable] [Howard Smith]
Killer Driller [Gold & Black Motif, Hard Hat, Spike] [Alan Glide]
Market Force [Vulgar Suit, Plastic Shopping Bag] [Maggie Durkee]

Doctor [reading from script]

Now rest ye merry, gentle folks

Old Hollow / Tosspot

And likewise any rough ones

Doctor

We bring mummery, stuffed with jokes.

Doctor

But only rather duff ones!

Dame Deadmaid

That we rhyme, not mime
Some mutts attack us
As we call loud for mumming
And the time is prime
If we're nuts or crackers
Since …

All 3

CHRISTMAS IS A COMING!

Doctor

I play Doctor Homeo'my
A name quite complimentary

Old Hollow / Tosspot

That's quite duff enough (it depends on how you spell it)

Doctor

As others appear, to live or to die
I call each, per verse, for his entry

Old Hollow / Tosspot

That's alternative stuff, because of the way that you tell it

[End of introduction]
[Costumes but 'straight' voices]

The challenges

Doctor

Now the first to come in is a hero [sung to the tune of the final carol]
A Saxon of historic fame
With his boldness and brains
Did he geld some old Danes
But we lately have doctored his name.

Great Alfred Stour

In comes I, Great Alfred Stour
I fear not multinational power
Come bureaucrat or Euro pratt
I shall vanquish thee within the hour!

Doctor

And the next to come in is a monster [sung as before]
A media magnate of might
In Wessex he's alien
Like a Yank who's Australian
Is he too old and crook for a fight?

Giant Mega

In come I, the Giant Mega [Aussie accent]
Compared to me, the monarch's a beggar!
My press and cable beats the Tower of Babel
My weapon's a dirty old digger's degger.

[Great Alf / Giant Mega fight]

Giant Mega

One thing of you the world has learnt
While you cooked up plans, yer cakes got burned!

Great Alf Stour

Thy fortunes founded on bare sensations
My legacy's the founding of the English nation!
(Not that I'd rule out some modest titillation)

[Giant Mega is killed]

Doctor

Now who will quickly clear this space?
For a Best-Kept Village, it's a dead disgrace!

Old Hollow / Tosspot

Now income I (tho' my incomes low) [As moving Great Mega from scene]
Old Hollow is my name sir,
Though I get called Tosspot, don't yer know,
Especially by me dame, sir!

Dame Deadmaid

The Tosspot 'Tis! Thee casn't cope!
Make way fer oy, Dame Deadmaid.
Without moy 'elp, thee as no 'ope
(Get 'ome 'n; get the bed made!)

[Clearance affected]

Doctor

Now the third to come in is a mogul
With energy he does abound
For all fossil fuel
He will fight a fierce duel
If he's not digging holes in the ground.

Killer Driller

In come I, one Killer Driller [American accent]
I supercede the Satanic Miller
My minions toil for gas and oil
But of the soil not one's a tiller

Interjection

No Hun intended!

Great Alf Stour

To dig more wells may be thy will
Tis thy blood and not thine oil I'll spill

[Great Alf / Killer Driller prepare to fight]

Dame Deadmaid

Thy Knoyle? Thy Knoyle? Wot Knoyle be that then - East or West?

Old Hollow / Tosspot

Neither one - more like penetration oil

[Fights]

Killer Driller

Fossil! Yokel! Bumpkin! Peasant!
You're Christmas past - I'm Christmas present!

Great Alf Stour

Thy next digging will be thy grave
Thou plundering, poisonous, polluting knave!
(Though I cook cakes better with a microwave)

[Killer Driller killed]

Old Hollow / Tosspot

That's one more mess to clear, I see [during clearance of Killer Driller]

Dame Deadmaid

What do ee foynd amoozin'?

Old Hollow / Tosspot

That's one more Parish Council fee.

Dame Deadmaid

Zo one more lot of booze in.

Doctor

Now the last to come in is a merchant
No grocer is grosser than him
He'll go manic and panic
At words like organic
So look out, to the outlook is grim.

Market Force

In comes I, no local invader [London market stall accent]
I'm yet friendly, global corporate raider!
Do not brood; fret not, neighbour
Over G.M. food or sweatshop labour,
I, Market Force'll soon persuade yer.

Great Alf Stour

He's one to fear - he'll ruin our beer

Market Force

Yerra ruin y'self, no-one would employ yer!
You old Wessex wazzock, I fink I'll destroy yer.

[Market Force and Great Alf Stour fight, GAS falls but recovers]

Great Alf Stour

I'm losing my strength
And my head's quite poor.

Market Force

Like me best Keg Bi 'er
Wot yer righ' arm's for!

[Great Alf Stour falls again]

Market Force

'E's less of a fret than a jumped-up dotcom!
Now, what hyped-up stuff can I dump up Motcombe?

[Exits]
[Great Alf Stour remains down. Dame Deadmaid goes to his aid]

Dame Deadmaid

Wherever's that Doctor Homeo'my?
Bring on a cure in case he moyt doy.

[Doctor Homeo'my arrives with bag]

Doctor

He should have trained with that karate lot -
Or Ninja! [produces bottle from bag]
Here - take a drop of Kingswood - Apricot and ginger!

[Great Alf Stour drinks dosage. Coughs.]

Old Hollow / Tosspot

That hasn't helped much
Not dead but all but,
He needs the Nelson touch -
Like Richard at the Walnut.
[Dose of ale from Doc's bag]
Good English ale will make him hearty.

Great Alf Stour

If we had some cakes we could have a party
[Leaps up slowly]
I need no martial art or armour
Getting Squatted is not my karma
While I come round much quicker
With some good local liquor
What keeps me going is links with the Drama!

[End of play proper. Cast gather for recitation of Envoi and finishing carol]
[Envoi in straight voices]

Doctor

Not screened from Sky to Channel One
We keep our show parochial

Dame Deadmaid

No text-message describes such fun
Our terms are too colloquial

Great Alf Stour

And if you've travelled here by car
You must have got free parking

Giant Mega
We give the cheapest show by far
Perhaps we chaps are barking

Killer Driller

To finish off our fifth rate farce

Killer Driller

We've something of a carol

Old Hollow / Tosspot

Before we drain a well filled glass

All except Old Hollow / Tossppot

For some more like a barrel

Carol by All

Chorus

With the rising again of the sun
See the running abroad of the deer
Hear the merry music about in the town
And the choir a-carrolling clear

Verse

Oh, the Holly, the Yew and the Ivy
When they are quite full-grown
An they each be good in the jolly greenwood
The Holly do bear the crown.
'Tis the Holly who beareth a crown

Chorus
 
Print Play Verse
 
Notes
Performed by Mere Amateur Dramatic Society on Saturday 8th December 2001 at the opening of Mere Christmas Lights at 6:30 pm.

The script was written by a member of the society, Pip Potter, the copyright is his, and was provided by Adrienne Howell, Chairperson, 2010. Reproduced with the permission of the copyright holder.

Transcribed and edited by Chris Wildridge, 2010.

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