The Ballad of Barrow Market

The Ballad of Barrow Market

A film made by Signal Film and Media documenting the performances of The Ballad of Barrow Market being performed by members of the Ashton Theatre Group to a live audience in Barrow Market.


The Script was created in writing workshops led by Kate Davies for Signal Film and Media and were inspired by photographs, objects, film, sounds and memories of Barrow Markets, old and New. Stories are not documentaries of Barrow’s History but rather inspired by folk memory.

Banana KingRavi Jeydendren, Caleb Staples and Ellis Dunn

Demolition – Jean McSorley

Milliners Tales Brenda Fishwick

Vintage AdvantageDerek Bradley

UnmentionablesDavid Clancy

One CherryCraig Lockhead

The ideas from which the stories evolved were explored and developed by the whole group. Ballads were also written by the whole group. Polly Wright created and wrote the character of Bethany and the characters The Bell Man and the Market Official were created by Vicky Tighe. Christine Lee’s, Duncan Macmillan, Lee Wicks contributed towards the final script. 

Research material included: The Evening Mail Archive, Barrow Local Archive and Study Centre and The Elizabeth Roberts Oral History Archive.


The mystery shopper, compare and guide to the Market Ballad        Phill Gregg

Bell man                               Eric Nelson

Bethany                               Bridget O’Brien

Council Official                  Dan Hardie

Shopper                               Chris Wilson, Catherine Taylor

Banana King

Banana King                       Nathan Powell

Boris the butcher             Conrad Birchall


Mary     Douglas                                              Tracy Jones

Radio Cumbria Reporter               Robbie Bown

The Milliner’s Tale

Rosie                                     Nicole Rose

Jilly                                         Tara Edwards Doughty

Nan                                        Chrissie Bentley

Vintage Advantage

Vikki                                      Karen Hall

Ernest                                   Jon Bissett

Abigail                                   Nicole Rose


Kellie Kelly                          Tara Edwards Doughty

One Cherry

Andy                                     Damien Rose