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Street theatre and parade launch first World Cup game in Workington

Hundreds of people lined the streets of Workington for a spectacular show to launch the first Rugby League World Cup match in the town.

French street theatre artists Compagnie des Quidams led a grand March to the Match as part of the build-up to the Tonga versus Scotland match at Derwent Park last night.

A mass parade of spectators, many holding up wax candles, were led through the town by mysterious stilted figures and the event culminated in a fireworks display not far from Derwent Park.

The figures draped in white illuminated clothing grew and transformed throughout the procession.

Kate Rhodes, 34, of Senhouse Street, Siddick, Workington, was at the event with her two-year-old daughter, Alice Armstrong.

She said: “It was absolutely brilliant. I am not going to the match so it was a really good opportunity for normal members of the public to take part in the World Cup.”

John Quinn, 65, of Bolton Street, Workington, said: “It’s been very good. The atmosphere is very pleasant and people are enjoying themselves, which is great.”

Allerdale Council and Lakes Alive co-ordinated the visual arts piece that showcased Compagnie des Quidams’ performance of Herbert’s Dream.

The acclaimed show has been staged all over the world including the football World Cup held in France in 1998 and Euro 2000.

The march started outside the Laura Ashley shop at the top of Washington Square at around 6pm.

The performers had spectators chuckling as they pulled funny faces and danced with one another while a man followed them playing the flute.

They led spectators through the town centre to the Green outside of Allerdale House for a jaw-dropping fireworks finale.

Pat Williams, 57, of Ennerdale Avenue, Workington, said: “This is something totally unusual. It’s a great way to start the World Cup and there is a lovely atmosphere.”

Allerdale Council leader Alan Smith said: “It’s really fantastic and a brilliant way to start the Rugby League World Cup in Workington.”

Ian Frost, chief executive of Allerdale Council, told the News & Star: “Herbert’s Dream is really impressive. You see it on TV and it doesn’t do it justice. You have to see it live.

“It’s great that we can have something like that in Workington.”

Have your say

Another great result tonight against the USA. All we need now is for Tonga to dismiss Italy on Sunday and then we're on our way to Leeds to play New Zealand. Here's hoping for the right result on Sunday, it's out of our hands now. Whichever way it goes on Sunday you've played with passion and pride, well done guys.

Posted by Proud to be a Scot on 8 November 2013 at 00:25

Another great game with a lot of drama and excitement. Good to see another decent crowd and even though the result wasn't quite the right one for us Scots roll on Thursday night at Salford where it's down to us to put the USA in their place in order to progress to the knockout stages. Go for it lads, you can do it.

Posted by Proud to be a Scot on 4 November 2013 at 00:07

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