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On special nights of the year, entertainment seekers pour into The Loons, a strange looking building up a Lyttleton side street with a frontage of black and white circles. They file through the bar and find seats arranged cabaret style around a protruding stage. Then the lights dim and a night of extraordinary theatre unfolds, thanks to a talented troupe of players also known as 'The Loons'.

The troupe's full title is The Loons Circus Theatre Company and is the brainchild of two long-time mates, artistic director Mike Friend, and writer and entertainer Joe Bennett. Their goal is to make quality theatre accessible to all the community.

Reliant on word of mouth, and with little interest in self-promotion, this dedicated troupe of young circus performers, singers and actors (5 are Guinness World Record holders) are off to London on the smell of an oily rag, to present one of their most successful shows, 'The Butler'.

Meanwhile, on non-theatre nights, the building reverts to what it always was, a working men's club. In fact, the club has gained a new lease of life thanks to Lyttleton's Loons.