Nic Wright

Hadrian’s Wall becomes a comedy venue

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One of the North’s most historically significant sites is to become a comedy venue, as Magna Laughter brings top comics to Hadrian’s Wall next month.

Having hosted a stage during English Heritage’s St. George’s Festival, promoters and history buffs Magna Laughter are to stage a night of comedy at Chester’s Roman Fort in Northumberland.

On 5 September 2015, the fort – the most complete Roman Cavalry fort in the country – will play host to Magna Laughter resident host Ben Van der Velde, Tony Law, Gordon Southern and The Story Beast as they create comedy inspired by the individual histories of the venues.

The show is part of a weekend of events at Hadrian’s Wall, running from 3-6 September.

Magna Laughter, set up by historian and comic Ben Van der Velde and Gareth Swann, aims to bring live stand-up comedy to historical surroundings, as in the process, create bespoke material exploring the humorous side of the nation’s history.

Van der Velde said: “Having already performed in some of the biggest comedy clubs and dingiest back rooms of pubs, as well as on floating restaurants, dry ski slopes and giant tents, I’m really excited to add these unique and remarkable heritage sites to that list.

“Britain’s archaeological sites and country houses are a fascinating part of our history and being allowed to create bespoke comedy shows for them is a great privilege.

“We’re really excited to have attracted such great talent like Tony Law and Andy Zaltzman for what we hope will be a brilliant start to Magna Laughter’s series of gigs.”

Carl Hutton, Events Manager for the North at English Heritage said: “We’re extremely excited to have Magna Laughter at Chesters Roman Fort and look forward to a good laugh on the night. All the acts promise to make this an unforgettable evening of historical comedy, set in a unique venue.”

Tickets are available now from the English Heritage website.