DANIEL HANTON NORFOLK
As a child my first experience of Punch and Judy was on the beaches of Great Yarmouth watching Guy Richardson and Mike Wallis or a trip down the road to Lowestoft watching Professor Jingles. Living in a seaside resort my summer holidays were a magical time with plenty of entertainment for me to enjoy.
Spending my summers watching the show, with the sand between toes, took me to another world of sandcastles and ice creams. Thinking back, I remember the fascination with the booth. Was there a staircase in there for the puppets to walk up and down? Did Mr Punch really have a bed that I couldn’t see? Silly to think that now but as a child each performer had created a little world for his characters which the audience truly believe in. I remember feeling short changed if there is was no painted scenery and just a black backdrop and I still do, it's all helps create that pretend little world that's totally real to children. I was fascinated and almost obsessed by Punch as a child, and still am today. I started off by performing shows for the other children on my street with a small cut-out puppet theatre balanced on top of the garden wall, hiding behind just as I had seen the professionals disappear inside their booths.
Being a Punch and Judy performer is the best thing in the world, but there was still one location I wanted to perform the show, back at the place I first saw it, the beach. So in 2019 I brought Punch’s voice back to the sands of Gorleston-on-Sea beach after an absence of 30 years.
I perform the traditional show all over East Anglia including carnivals, fetes, country estates, festivals and private parties. It’s wonderful to hear the audience’s laughter, especially children when they can laugh and shout as loud as they want. Creating a pantomime puppet world which families aged 3 to 103 can all enjoy good old fashioned British entertainment that has lasted over 350 years bears testament to love for a little wooden puppet.
NEW Punch and Judy Storybook OUT NOW!
Beside the Seaside by Daniel Hanton
Clang went the bell, you could hear it down the prom. Everyone came to see where the noise was coming from.
From paddling in the sea to chip stealing seagulls and donkey rides. Let’s take a trip to the seaside to watch the magical puppet show, Punch and Judy.
Ages 3 - 7, Paperback, 28 pages, Published 2021.
ISBN - 978-1-5272-8670-2
Available now on Etsy and Amazon at the links below.