Award win for Cumbrian-based theatre school community champions 

Award win for Cumbrian-based theatre school community champions 

A theatre school franchise network has been rewarded for going above and beyond in their local communities during the exceptionally difficult days of the pandemic. Razzamataz Theatre Schools entered their Cumbrian schools for the Community Award in the FSB Awards and were delighted to be announced as winner. 

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The FSB is a non-profit organisation and the UK’s leading business campaigner. They have been helping small businesses and the self-employed achieve their ambitions for more than 45 years. 

Razzamataz entered schools based in Carlisle, West Cumbria, and South Lakes for their dedicated work in the community. The judges were looking for evidence of businesses who get involved in initiatives that support their community and make a positive impact. 

The judges said: “The Razzamataz entry left the judges in no doubt that this is a business which goes above and beyond in its quest to make a real difference to the lives of all those people which it meets, and further than that to offer support to community activities and causes which will have a positive impact on young people and their families.  We wish them every success in the UK Final and in their future endeavours.”

When schools closed during the first lockdown, the first response was for the wellbeing of the students, teachers, staff, and franchisees. Razzamataz knew that it was crucial to still provide a much-needed service for customers and maintain the businesses for franchisees. Razzamataz provided numerous Online Workshops/Masterclasses for students in addition to their weekly sessions. This was on top of many other activities such as bedtime stories, kitchen discos, Senior’s nights in and regularly checking in with students and families for a wellbeing chat. 

The impact of the work in the community has created a positive effect for the lives of families within the area, not just students who attend the schools. This has included several initiatives including: 

  • Sponsoring a Football Sports Kit for Yanwath Primary School.
  • Holding a Baby Bundles Collection collecting hundreds of baby items to donate to Baby Bundles who distribute these to mothers and babies in need, within the local community.
  • Sponsoring The Reading Bus at Beaconside Primary School. 
  • Supporting CFM Radio Cash for Kids appeal by donating toys to their mission Christmas campaign.
  • Delivered exciting Tots and Tiny Tots Sessions free of charge to many local playgroups as they reopened their doors after the pandemic. 
  • Hosting a ‘Strictly Come Razzing’ event which brought together the Razzamataz families to raise over £8000 for local charities. 
  • Raising money for CFM Cash for Kids, The Great North Air Ambulance and Razzamataz Future Fund.

“The pandemic was difficult for so many, and it hit our industry particularly badly,” says Debbie, Matty & Asha, Principals of Razzamataz Carlisle, West Cumbria and South Lakes. “We are so proud we were able to use performing arts to bring people together and achieve amazing results. Our aim at Razzamataz is to give the gift of confidence. We are not all born with this, but we can 100% learn in and it will be so valuable in all areas of our life, relationships, and our own self-worth. The discipline and self-belief we instil in children build their confidence and allow them to go on and achieve their dreams, whatever they may be.” 

Competition for the entry was incredibly tough but the Cumbrian Razzamataz franchisees impressed the judges with their commitment on several levels. They will now be entered into the prestigious UK final on Thursday 19th May in Glasgow, with a chance to be crowned the UK Small Business of the Year. 

Razzamataz Carlisle, West Cumbria and South Lakes have an exciting few month ahead with charity days and working towards their annual summer showcases. 

Classes are held during term time at various venues. There are currently opportunities to try a taster class for free. To book your place or find out more, contact your local Principal:

Razzamataz Carlisle – Thursdays & Saturdays 

Principal: Debbie Mitchell
Harraby Community Centre, Carlisle, CA1 3SN

Classes available for ages 2 – 18 years
T: 07809 121494



Razzamataz West Cumbria – Saturdays 

Principal: Matty Aitchison – Rayson

Jericho Primary School, Whitehaven, CA28 6UX

Classes available for ages 2 – 18 years
T: 01946 848148 / 07940 957894

Razzamataz South Lakes – Tuesdays, Wednesdays & Thursdays 

Principal: Asha Richardson

Kendal: Kendal Leisure Centre for ages newborn to 18 years
Penrith: Penrith Methodist Church for ages newborn to 18 years
Appleby: The Appleby Hub for ages newborn to 8 years
T: 07539 144225
E: / 


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