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Puppet Barge in London

A recent discussion on Puptcrit about resident Puppet Theaters included a link to a puppet theater in London called Puppet Barge.  It is a 55 seat puppet theater that has been around since the early 1980's.  Hmmm thought I, is it possible to establish a puppet theater with so few seats and be successful enough for it to pay its own expenses (and provide a living to a puppeteer?).
Being me, I decided to write to them and ask.  I received a wonderfully thoughtful reply which I'd like to share with the guild.

So while it is possible (or was possible in the 1980's - 1990's economy) it might be rather difficult today.  Still, the dream lives on...dg