Roll up roll up, Stroud's famous Giffords Circus welcomes people back to the big top

Stroud's famous Giffords Circus returns with a new socially distanced performance. Credit: ITV West Country

Stroud's famous Giffords Circus is welcoming people back to the big top.

It closed because of lockdown just days into rehearsals for their new show 'The Hooley'.

When restrictions were lifted the team developed a new, socially distanced show in 5 days. called 'The Feast'

The run has just been extended by 3 weeks.

"We were trying to work out if we could put a show on with social distancing. Obviously the challenge for most circuses is with social distancing, with the bums on seats the numbers get a lot smaller. So the challenge was how can we make a show with a lot less people in the audience. We normally do dinner after the show in a separate tent, so we just thought why don't we combine the two.

Lil Rice, Producer, Giffords Circus

Watch Lil Rice sing effortlessly while performing on the Cyr wheel:

The crowd is made up of 100 people that are sat at tables of six.

Each table is positioned 2 metres apart.

The audience enjoys a mouth watering meal from Tetbury chef Ols Halas while watching the performance Credit: ITV

Circus lovers enjoy dinner under the big top at Fennels Farm, tasting tempting dishes created by Tetbury chef Ols Halas.

They witness the delights of several amazing aerial acts and a frenzied roller-skating display from performers who would have been in Las Vegas if it wasn't for Coronavirus.

Watch the couple in action:

Gloucestershire's Tweedy the Clown performs with Ringmaster Michael Fletcher Credit: Giffords Circus

Of course a Circus would not be complete without comedy from Gloucestershire's home grown Tweedy the Clown.

Although his usual performance in the Cheltenham pantomime will not be going ahead this year because of coronavirus, he is hopeful of a smaller Christmas performance.

Being part of 'The Feast' has been a saving grace for the whole cast.

"This show has saved my life. I got a phone call and three weeks later we started rehearsals - it meant that I could breath out."

Michael Fletcher, Ringmaster, Giffords Circus
Nell Gifford was the co-founder of the circus, she died of cancer in 2019 Credit: Mark Lord

This is the first performance since the death of the Circus' co-founder Nell Gifford.

She lost her life to cancer in December 2019 aged 46.

'The Feast' replaces her production of 'The Hooley' that is postponed until next Spring because of the pandemic.