A LARGE-scale outdoor performance featuring choirs, a live band and evocative story telling will celebrate the past of an east Durham community.

The participatory production Everything There Ever Was, presented by East Durham Creates, will be held on Saturday at Crimdon Dene and promises to be funny, fun, moving and magical.

The show, which tells the story of a family who are about to move away from the area, has been written using stories and memories from people living in east Durham.

Featuring music and a magical encounter, it looks nostalgically at the history of the popular beauty spot and is aimed at using the arts to rekindle memories.

The original songs have been written by former Chumbawamba member Boff Whalley, with the lyrics reflecting the stories told by local people of their memories of the seaside location.

The performance starts at 4.30pm at Crimdon Beach car park, and then the audience will follow the performers down the bank into the dene where there will be tents, a live band and a picnic available.

Malcolm Fallow, chief executive of East Durham Trust, which manages the project, said: “ For a whole generation of east Durham people Crimdon Dene represents a major part of their lives – this event uses the arts to rekindle memories and get Crimdon back into the local psyche.”

East Durham Creates project manager Elaine Wilson said: “This is a unique opportunity for people from east Durham to celebrate this beautiful seaside location which holds fond childhood memories for so many who live here.

“Local people have had input into the creation of the piece and we would like as many of them as possible to be involved in the performance of it too, particularly the pop up choirs.”

Daniel Bye, of That There, a consortium of artists who are behind the Everything There Ever Was commission, added:

“People from across east Durham have shared with us wonderful stories and memories of Crimdon.

“Turning them into songs and stories for our characters to tell has been a pleasure and a privilege.

"I’m so grateful to East Durham Creates and to the people of east Durham for giving us this opportunity.”

The event, which has been funded by Arts Council England and Durham Heritage Coast, includes free picnic food, activities and other surprises on the day.

There is a step-free walk of 10 minutes to get into the dene.