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Sunday 4th October 2015

The Real Reasons We Drink was an experiment in bringing local history to life.

In a performance curated and presented by its regulars, a pub became the setting and the subject of a pointedly personal, entirely subjective presentation of its own history – for one night only.

Travelling Tent_Real Reasons We Drink at The Ranelagh Panorama

The Ranelagh pub in Bounds Green, North London is the social centre of its community. It’s been the spontaneous pint, the all-nighter, the first date, the hair of the dog and the unofficial babysitter since 1861.

Travelling Tent spent months collecting interviews with The Ranelagh’s customers and former staff, which we then combined with archival research and original music to create a live event shaped by its participants and unique to its location.

Check out our digital timeline of The Ranelagh’s history!


What people said:

“A great, fun, historically fascinating evening, which brought the community together”
Participant and audience member

“An organic, interactive and personal history of the pub […] an honest and humbling discovery of a community’s history. A real labour of love”
Daniel Perks, A Younger Theatre
(read the full review here)

“Wonderful, informative, poignant. We were so moved having frequented the Ranelagh for over 40 years.”
Participant and audience member

“The show’s main strength is in the personal stories, which are, in their own ways, either poignant, utterly irreverent or downright hilarious […] I do hope this isn’t the last outing for this fascinating production”
Chris Omaweng,
(read the full review here)

“Very innovative – really brought the history of Bounds Green to life”
Audience member

Photos and Feedback gallery:

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PRESENTERS: Eleanor Harding, Miriam Sherwood and Annie Ward
COMPOSER: Will Gardner
MUSICIANS: Rebecca Burns (clarinet), Will Gardner (keyboard) and Kate Huggett (voice)
SOUND: Nick Pike

PARTICIPANTS: William Barry, Eileen Bostle, David Brooks, Steve Byrne, Kuli Cardoso, Pat & Jim Dean, Nell Dervish, Trevor Doughty, Les Foreman, Sue & Lawrence Furby, Alex Giddings, Ray Haw,Gerry & Sue Kift, Amelia Lawrence, Andy Milligan, Richard McKeever, David Sheen, Jane Taylor, Dennis


Ian, Laura, Adrian and the staff at The Ranelagh, Thom Andrewes, Carmen Gonzalez at HAVCO Haringey,  Tim Heapy, Colin Marr at the Friern Barnet and District Local History Society, Phil Knowles, Nika Obydzinski, Albert Pinching and his book, Bounds Green – A History and Walk, Andy Simmons, Clare Stephens, Cherry McAskill and Val at the Haringey Archives, and Zoë Tweed.

The Real Reasons We Drink was part of The Ranelagh Story Project, funded by a Sharing Heritage grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

All our interviews and transcripts, along with a recording of the event,
will be available at the Bruce Castle Museum’s Haringey Archives.
More details coming soon!