CHIP Shop Chips came to The Hub in Salford last week. Quays News entertainment reporter Louisa McRobb went along…

Set in a chip shop at The Hub in Salford this play is a bit out of the ordinary. You are welcomed by a chippy tea accompanied with Dandelion and Burdock; a quintessential British tradition.

It is the opening of Booth and Sons Fish and Chip Shop, Eric (Russell Richardson) the owner is keen to make a good impression, but his old flame Christine (Julie Edwards) stops him in his tracks. Christine is accompanied by granddaughter Jasmine (Jessica Forrest) who catches the eye of new waiter, Lee (Ben-Ryan Davies).

The audience is made to feel part of the play, it is interactive and we participate in newspaper hat making, and a quiz. Memories and love is the premise. Each audience member receives memory cards in order to write down what their fondest fish and chip memory’s are. The focus is the protagonist’s memories, Eric and Christie, of when they first met.

The recent death of her husband spirals her into deep feelings that she once had for first love Eric. Edwards gives a strong performance enticing us with a monologue about her husband’s illness and the reasons why she is reaching out to Eric now.

She is crying out for the attention that she once received from Eric. However it is a little bit too late. His anger subsides in order not to upset Christine anymore and they become civil. Richardson is believable and persuasive in depicting anger, which shocks the audience.

The audience are left to make up their own minds about the future of Lee and Jasmine’s relationship. Eric sees Jasmine as a heart breaker who is leading Lee on and just wants the attention.  However she is won over by his genuine character. Forrest is vivacious and convincing in her role.

The set design was rather cramped which made some of the drama unseen.  However the play overcomes these limitations and the storyline is quirky and entertaining, and it also has a very real feel about what could have been.

A worthwhile watch.

By: Louisa McRobb

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