Posted by Kat Heath on 01 Jun 2022

Recently myself and my two boys, Harry and Elliott had the pleasure of watching a live production by Long Nose Puppets of The Hug at the recently opened Horton Art Centre in Epsom.

We were warmly welcomed into the stunning new arts venue by one of the lovely volunteers and took our seats in the beautiful performance room which although is spacious has a very intimate atmosphere.

The Hug is based on the heart warming children’s book by Eoin McLaughlin and Polly Dunbar and is a beautiful story starring the main characters, a Hedgehog and a Tortoise on their search for a loving hug. (Which fits the narrative well after the pandemic)

It is a beautiful tale about hope, empathy and the basic need of a compassionate hug when things get tough.
The puppetry was set to the music of Tom Gray who is known for his light hearted and witty lyrics and music makes the Hug an easy and enjoyable watch for the whole family.  The production was stunning with beautifully created puppets and a hand crafted set which worked really well with the show. It was absolutely gorgeous.  The boys even got to meet the puppeteers and the puppets after. A lovely way to spend the morning!

The Horton Arts Centre which opened its doors earlier this year is a stunning cultural hub for the community and is a non profit organisation managed by registered charity; Horton Chapel Arts and Heritage.

The Grade II listed building which used to be a chapel for patients within the former psychiatric hospital complex became a music therapy centre in the 1960s and finally closed its doors in 1997.  After many consultations and with help from the Heritage Fund, The Horton Arts Centre opened its doors in April and it really has become a cultural destination for the community to love and enjoy.

The restored building has been carefully curated so that the design features still demonstrate that the building was a chapel originally.  The original parquet flooring which was black at the beginning of restoration has been striped and taken back to its original and is absolutely beautiful.

The lovely cafe/bar serving a range of alcoholic and non alcoholic drinks alongside freshly made items is situated where the alter would have been and above is a ceiling of stars which really is spectacular.  Making the Horton a great place to meet up for a coffee.

For more information on up and coming events at The Horton Arts Centre visit – including their Strictly 1950s Jubilee Jive which is a FREE  fun family event.

The Horton Arts Centre
Haven Way
KT19 8NP

Opening Hours:
Thursday-Sat: 9.15-3pm (hours change of production or event is on)

Tel: 01372 747662

Kat xx

Kat Heath
Kat Heath is a qualified beauty therapist and a mum of two boys, Harry and Elliott.

Kat also has been a marketing ambassador and blogger for many on-line mummy sites as well as working as a therapist for Decleor, Clarins and Guinot within Selfridges, Peter Jones and John Lewis.

Her passions are fashion, interiors, wellbeing and food!

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