Some of Britain’s most respected folk musicians are to deliver a powerful tale of exile and migration at Durham’s Gala Theatre.

The Transports – a popular folk opera written by Peter Bellamy, who died in 1991 – will be performed at the Gala on Monday 22nd January.

The musicians appearing in The Transports include Faustus, Nick Kerr, Greg Russell and Stockton’s BBC award winners The Young Uns. Rachel McShane, from Bellowhead – who have won the Folk Award five times – will also star in the show.

The version of The Transports which will be put on at the Durham Gala has a fresh musical arrangement. The script will be performed in the light of the world’s current mass migration issues.

The Transports uses moving folk ballads to tell the story of a family destroyed by crime and poverty and exiled to Australia in the 1780s. The folk opera is based on the true-life characters of Henry Cabell and Susannah Holmes, who fell in love in Norwich Jail after being imprisoned for theft.

The critically acclaimed show is being put on in cooperation with the Parallel Lives project, which works with organisations supporting refugees in Britain and gathers stories from people who have been trafficked or transported.

The Transports project also has two partners in Durham City. Durham for Refugees – run by Durham University students – aims to raise money and awareness for people affected by the global refugee crisis. Durham City of Sanctuary is an organisation which seeks to build positive relations between refugees and local people.

For more information about The Transports or to purchase tickets, please visit or telephone the Gala’s box office on 03000 266 600.

To find out more about the Durham Gala Theatre’s exciting spring programme, click here.

(The featured image shows a scene from The Transports)

Get Durham Magazine direct to your inbox

* indicates required


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here