The Company

Funny Wonders Inc. (FWinc) is a Community Interest Company (CIC) (Company No. 06814964) based in Buxton, Derbyshire, UK which organises a wide range of puppetry, music and performance activities for all ages and abilities. CIC’s are limited, not-for-profit companies created to provide business or activities to benefit the community. We explore the world of puppetry and puppet theatre combined with music and other multimedia artforms and have been developing creative projects since the late 1990s.

Our work has involved:

  • Projects in a variety of community settings in Buxton. This includes a number of youth-led activities that encourage young people to actively engage in planning and delivering their own projects.

  • Partnership with Buxton Opera House to present the well-loved annual Buxton Puppet Festival, which includes a wide range of performances and workshops.

  • International links and exchanges with Yamabiko-Za Children’s Theatre (Sapporo, Japan) and the Katkatha Troupe (Delhi, India).

  • Creative workshops in schools in the surrounding area, particularly building gigante puppets and creating shadow puppet theatre shows.

  • Running after-school puppet clubs and creative art workshops to support young people in Buxton who face daily difficulties.

  • Delivering the Buxton Flowerpot Trail project in support of the Buxton Town Team’s Buxton in Bloom project.

We promote participation at all levels and creative expression in an inclusive and supportive environment through puppetry, story-telling, script-writing and musical composition and focus on the doing rather than the end product. Find out more here.

We enjoy working in partnership with other organisations and artists to develop arts-based community and educational projects and welcome new approaches from groups of people of any age. We are pleased to have worked closely with Transition Buxton – a grass roots movement that encourages anyone to get involved to help Buxton become more resilient and able to withstand outside shocks like fuel price hikes and shortages. We use puppetry and music to encourage thought and discussion around these issues. Find out why puppetry here.

The organisation is overseen by a volunteer Board of Directors with activities organised by a core team and delivered with our practioners. Find out about our team here. We have no core funding and operate on a project-by-project basis subject to successful funding applications. However, we are making steps towards becoming a sustainable company providing self-sustaining activities. Projects have been designed to develop our practitioner team and provide income-generating opportunities and experience for early-career artists including puppeteers and musicians.

Funny Wonders is a member of Vision Buxton, a membership organisation that brings together local community groups and businesses who are all passionate about making Buxton an even better place to live, work and play. We are also a member of PuppeteersUK, the networking organisation for puppetry in the United Kingdom, and Made in Derbyshire.

Funny Wonders operates under a best-practise culture and in accordance with a range of policy documents. It is a priority to ensure our activities are within a safe environment for all our members and associates. All our practitioners have Enhanced DBS (CRB) checks upon recruitment and our team undergo safeguarding training.

We always welcome new members – practitioners, volunteers, artists, organisers. See how you can get involved here and contact us here.