Mermaids, rats and of course pirates were the stars of the show in the Chesil Theatre’s adaptation of Treasure Island.

Set in the beautiful grounds of Winchester College, the production team has put together an impressive pirate ship stage, equipped with a full mast and sails.

The cloudy skies didn’t deter the Winchester Amateur Dramatic Society’s (WDS) cast of 36 on Tuesday’s opening night, with the wind and gloomy clouds only adding to the nautical atmosphere and bringing the tale to life.

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Hampshire Chronicle: Treasure Island at Winchester CollegeTreasure Island at Winchester College (Image: Newsquest)

Each and every actor, committed whole heartedly to their roles, whether that was a crazed pirate, a squawking parrot or cheese loving Ben Gunn.

The youth theatre members who played a lively pack of rats who stole all the food were an absolute hit.

Winchester is blessed with a thriving drama community and group of theatres and this performance in such a scenic setting is definitely a must-see but don't forget to wrap up warm.

The show is running until Saturday, July 15 but opening night on Tuesday was particularly special with 300 visitors in the audience who’d been nominated by 18 local organisations to be gifted free tickets.

Treasure Island celebrates a significant year for the Chesil Theatre as after 20 years of trying the organisation has purchased the land to the south of the theatre. WDS president Tom Williams said: “This will allow us to do more for our audiences and more for the community.”

Performances start at 7.30pm, with standard tickets costing £16. To book go to