The Theatrical Guild, an organisation which exists to provide help to all who are connected with the professional theatre, particularly backstage and front of house staff, is the adopted charity for the 2011 Whatsonstage.com Awards. This year the charity invited everyone working in the theatres across London to exercise their creativity and design, built and decorate their theatre's christmas tree.

The competition was run in two categories, full-length floor trees to be displayed in foyers and bars, and shorter table top trees.

The completed trees were judged by Christopher Biggins, Bob Crowley, Michael Howells, Tomasz Starzewski and Nickolas Grace before the Awards Launch at Cafe de Paris on 3 December 2010, with the charity's chosen speaker Simon Russell Beale announcing winners from the stage. The winners from both categories received a special trophy and a crate of Ruinart Champagne.

Below we've got a gallery of the entries, as well as the pictures of the winning trees. In the table top category the winners were the team from Gielgud Theatre, whilst the floor tree winners were the team from the Piccadilly Theatre.

The Theatrical Guild are now offering theatregoers the chance to bid for the trees, with the highest bidder able to collect the tree after the festive period - ready for use next Christmas.

If you like the look of one of the trees in the gallery above, click on the link below to see the many of the trees being built, and find links to the bidding pages at the Theatrical Guild's website.

Adelphi Theatre
Aldwych Theatre
Apollo Victoria Theatre
Comedy Theatre
Criterion Theatre
Duke of York's Theatre
Fortune Theatre
Gielgud Theatre
Lyceum Theatre
Phoenix Theatre
Piccadilly Theatre
Playhouse Theatre
Savoy Theatre
Trafalgar Studios

Established in 1891, under the title of The Theatrical Ladies' Guild, the charity was founded by a group of distinguished actresses, led by Mrs Charles L Carson, "Kittie", who set out to help those in the profession who had fallen on bad times. To dispel the mistaken notion that it was for women only, the charity changed its name to The Theatrical Guild (TTG) in 2001.

Uniquely, TTG makes no distinction between the nature of employment – backstage and onstage, front of house, technical, catering, sales and administration, management – if you have worked in the theatre and are facing hardship then The Theatrical Guild can work for you through regular and one-off grants and other forms financial aid and assistance.

Amongst the highly distinguished current generation of West End actresses steering the Guild’s work in the 21st century are: president Phyllida Law, chair Belinda Lang, Issy Van Randwyck and Liz Robertson.


To cast your vote in the 2011 Whatsonstage.com Awards, "the theatregoers choice" go to Whatsonstage.com/awards.