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An introduction to the project...

March 1, 2018

Thanks to Heritage Lottery Funding and Arts Council England, PaddleBoat will be working with different schools in Devon over the period of two years to educate students about Clare Hollingworth and explore their local WWII history. We will be creating a family production to celebrate the life and work of Clare Hollingworth which will tour in 2019 in conjunction with the 80th anniversary of the start of WWII.


Clare Hollingworth died in January 2017, she was the first journalist to report on the outbreak of WWII - the ‘scoop of the century’. Hollingworth was fearless and was awarded an OBE for services to journalism in 1982. Hollingworth’s life story, her character and profession inspired PaddleBoat to create a performance to share her legacy with families in the South West.


To create our production we will be working creatively with mainstream and special schools in Devon throughout the Spring term 2018. Students from schools in Devon will inform the creation of our professional production. We are currently working in residency with schools, delivering weekly drama workshops that explore Clare’s story. We are working with Rydon Primary School, Exeter Deaf Academy, Southbrook School, Clyst St Mary Primary, and St Sidwells Primary.


PaddleBoat’s Hattie Brown and Katy Dash have been visiting the University of Exeter’s Special Collections Library to read Hollingworth’s memoirs’ ‘Front Line’ originally published in 1990. The book is a fascinating read that paints a picture of Clare’s life, her work, her relationships and the politics of the time.


“ ‘Hmm you’re a peculiar woman, Miss Hollingworth. What are you doing running about in the middle of all this? Love of excitement I suppose.’ ‘I’m a journalist Sir Howard. This is how I earn my living.’  ”