An ambitious community arts project in Lancing with backing from Arts Council England is looking for the final part of its funding.
It now needs the community to get involved.
Spokesman Aedan Kerney said: “Lancing and Sompting, as many coastal communities, have a long history of smuggling and there is a mix of documented evidence and local folklore to support this. There is talk of a network of smuggling tunnels and the cellars of the Sussex Pad and other local hostelries being used to store contraband.”
A creative team led by Aedan and The Boundstone Chorus is now creating a large-scale community musical which draws on this rich history: “Based on the documented 1825 journey from Brighton of the smuggling cutter the Mayfly which was then caught off the coast of Lancing on its way to Portsmouth, writer Charlie Olsen has created a fascinating script with all the elements of intrigue, love, injustice, enterprise and survival. Horsham composer Christopher Hussey has been commissioned to compose the musical score. The Boundstone Chorus is leading this initiative with the commitment of two local schools, the Sir Robert Woodard Academy and Sompting Village Primary School.”
Composer Christopher said: “I’m thrilled to be involved in this large-scale community project, and honoured to have been commissioned to compose the music for such an ambitious and inclusive musical project for Lancing. Involving a massed choir of adults alongside children from local schools, lead actor-singers and an orchestra, and drawing together such large and diverse groups of the present-day community to bring to life in song the exciting secret history of Lancing’s smuggling past, it will be a special project.”
Aedan, director of The Boundstone Chorus, added: “We are looking for the final element in our funding before the end of January. Through West Sussex’s Spacehive funding initiative we are looking to find £8,000 before the end of the month. With 36 groups and individuals already having pledged a total of £5,000 in financial support we are now looking for the last £3,000 to make our musical possible.”