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25th Jun, 2022

Artistic director celebrates 10 years at Coombe Abbey

A DEDICATED actor, director and scriptwriter is celebrating his 10th anniversary as artistic director at the Coombe Abbey hotel.

James Webster has clocked up over 1,300 performances at the venue, where he writes, directs and performs in various seasonal themed shows.

They include playing a monk in the abbey’s medieval banquets, dressing up as a tudor gentleman, performing in murder mysteries, and portraying a 1920’s East End gangster in ‘Speakeasy Blinders’.

He said: “In the Murder Mysteries I’ve been a knight, a doctor, a butler, a member of the landed gentry, a janitor and a highwayman to name but a few.

“Shows are lots of fun and my incredible team do wonders to help make it all happen.

“Medieval banquets always feel immersive. Two that stand out are the story of the Gunpowder Plot, which mimics the hotel’s true history, and Halloween banquets are really good fun.

“There’s a lot of singing and funny songs – the audiences love it and we have an absolute ball!”

James previously worked on the professional touring theatre circuit.

He started off at the hotel in 2009 as an actor working in the troupe before becoming the director of production two years later.

He is also the hotel’s head toastmaster, having hosted 900 weddings.

He added: “I love a wedding! From the start of the day to the end the entire team just want to make sure each one is as individual and as special as possible – from the biggest family weddings to the smallest intimate gatherings for 30 to 40 people.

Ron Terry, operations director of No Ordinary Hospitality Management, the company which operates Coombe Abbey Hotel, said: “James does an extraordinary job at hosting entertaining and highly elaborate banqueting shows.

“We would like to say a huge thank you for his amazing hard work and dedication over the last 10 years.”

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