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Barnard Castle Witham Hall


Witham Hall - Main Shot

The Town

Barnard Castle has been recognised nationally as one of the 50 most historically and architecturally important towns in Great Britain and listed in The Sunday Times Best Places to Live in Britain.  The Grade II listed Witham Hall is an important, central feature of the townscape, located where Horsemarket meets the Market Place.


The Hall

The Witham Testimonial was built by public subscription as a memorial to Henry T.M. Witham of Lartington, a palaeobotanist and philanthropist who had strived to make provision for the medical and educational needs of Barnard Castle before his death in 1844. Hence the building, which opened in 1846, housed the Mechanics' Institute and a Dispensary for the Relief of the Sick Poor. By 1860, a large music hall had been built to the rear of the Testimonial Building, whilst the premises later incorporated several small cottages in Hall Street. Together these buildings became known as The Witham and have continued to be used by the people of Barnard Castle as a backdrop for celebration, for participation and for people to gain new experiences.

2013 marks the culmination of over 10 years work to raise money and carry out work to restore its historic fabric and make The Witham fit-for-purpose as a fully accessible modern arts venue for the 21st century. The redevelopment project has seen the original Grade II listed Witham buildings restored, and a new link building constructed between the Witham Testimonial and the Event Hall, incorporating a foyer area, café bar and toilets. In addition, Durham County Council has extended and refurbished its Library building to the rear of The Witham buildings, to include new council offices and a customer access point as well as the continued Library service.

Funding of the project principally came from Durham County Council investing over £2 million with match funding of £336,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and £773,879 from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). The ERDF funding is part of a wider programme which has brought more than £300 million to the North East. The Witham and Library development project was led by Barnard Castle Vision, Durham County Council and The Witham Directors.

Features

Hire Charges: Contact the hall directly Registered Charity Number: 1146726

Contact

Centre Manager - 01833 631107 Email: admin@thewitham.org.uk The Witham, 3 Horsemarket, Barnard Castle DL12 8LY Registered Charity Number: 1146726

Witham Hall - Alternate Shot
Main Entrance

Witham Hall - Alternate Shot
Community Activity

Witham Hall - Alternate Shot
Visitor Information Point

Witham Hall - Alternate Shot
Cafe bar

Witham Hall - Alternate Shot
Hanging installation, inspired by Henry Witham

Facilities

WC WC

Parking On Street Parking


Ramp Down Ramp (down)

Ramp Up Ramp (up)

Wheelchair Access to Side Wheelchair Access to Side (by prior arr.)


What's On at Barnard Castle Witham Hall

Coming Up Contact Notes
On Friday the 18th of April 2014 until 19 April 2014
10:00 to 16:00 Designer Maker Market
The emphasis will be on original and contemporary work, with a strong 'up-cycled' theme. There will be an opportunity to meet the designer-makers in person and buy unique handcrafted goods of gallery quality. As well as talented craftspeople selling their work, some will be demonstrating their skills and throughout the weekend there will also be ‘have a go’ sessions where people of all ages can try their hand at learning a new craft. There are still a small number of stalls available for anyone who can fit the very strict criteria – work must be contemporary and highly original and all goods must be designed and made by the stallholder. Artists should contact Events Organiser Kathryn Guy directly by emailing kathrynguy@btinternet.com
Centre Manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
FREE www.thewitham.org.uk
On Saturday the 19th of April 2014
20:00 to 22:00 Tom McConville & Andy Watt
Tom McConville, primarily known as 'The Newcastle Fiddle Player', is one of the leading fiddle players of our time. A virtuoso musician and fantastic singer, his rich and warm voice makes his interpretation of traditional and contemporary songs greatly admired by singers throughout the world. He's joined for this performance by guitarist and mandolin player Andy Watt.
Centre Manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£10.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Thursday the 24th of April 2014
19:30 Film : The Brothers Bloom (12)
A rare chance to see writer/director Rian Johnson's (Brick, Looper) charming, eccentric globe-trotting carnival of a con movie first released in 2009. A treat for American indie film buffs. Brothers Stephen Bloom (Mark Ruffalo) and Bloom Bloom (Adrien Brody) have been professional con artists since childhood, and have honed the art of swindling fortunes to perfection. When they meet beautiful but lonely New Jersey heiress Penelope (Rachel Weisz), they determine to pull off one last spectacular heist through an elaborate scheme that takes them all around the world. But as Stephen's elaborate web of deception pulls ever tighter, Bloom begins to wonder exactly who is conning who.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£5.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Saturday the 26th of April 2014
14:00 to 16:00 Acoustic Cafe : Fools Gold
Fool’s Gold is an acoustic duo playing mostly their own songs, but also include a few well known – and less well known – covers. They describe their songs as being mostly ‘in the tradition’, being story songs with strong hooks and choruses and often intricate instrumentation
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
FREE www.thewitham.org.uk
On Saturday the 26th of April 2014
14:00 to 16:00 Acoustic Cafe
FREE live music at The Dispensary Cafe played by Fools Gold.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
FREE www.thewitham.org.uk
On Thursday the 01st of May 2014
19:00 King Lear : National Theatre Live
Academy Award® winner Sam Mendes (Skyfall, American Beauty) returns to the National Theatre to direct Simon Russell Beale (Timon of Athens, Collaborators) in the title role of Shakespeare’s tragedy. An aged king decides to divide his kingdom between his three daughters, according to which of them is most eloquent in praising him. His favourite, Cordelia, says nothing. Lear’s world descends into chaos.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£14.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Thursday the 08th of May 2014
19:30 Film : The Railway Man (15)
Colin Firth, Nicole Kidman and Stellan Skarsgård star in this war drama adapted from Eric Lomax's memoirs about his experiences in a POW camp. While serving in the Second World War, British Army officer Eric Lomax (Jeremy Irvine) is captured and held prisoner by the Japanese. He is brutally tortured and forced, along with his fellow captives, to build the Thai-Burma Railway. Many years later an older Lomax (Firth) is still traumatised by the experience. Supported by his wife Patti (Kidman) and friend Finlay (Skarsgård), he decides to track down one of his torturers, Takashi Nagase (Hiroyuki Sanada), hoping to find the answers that will enable him to finally let go of the hatred he has held for so long.
Centre Manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£5.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Friday the 09th of May 2014
20:00 to 22:00 Royal Northern Sinfonia
A chamber performance by the Royal Northern Sinfonia, Orchestra of Sage Gateshead. The UK’s only full-time chamber orchestra, the Royal Northern Sinfonia has built a distinctive reputation as a fresh-thinking and versatile orchestra. The orchestra was founded in 1958 by BBC musicologist and producer Michael Hall. The Queen bestowed the title of ‘Royal’ on Northern Sinfonia in 2013 recognising it as one of the UK’s finest orchestras - the first time any UK orchestra has been so honoured for over twenty years. Members of Royal Northern Sinfonia are committed chamber musicians, and regular recitals and performances of chamber works form an important part of their roles within the orchestra. The orchestra will be performing in Barnard Castle as part of their commitment to bringing the highest quality classical performances to audiences across the UK. Programme: LIGETI Six Bagatelles (11’) FRANCAIX Wind Quintet No. 1 (20’) +++ KLUGHARDT Wind Quintet, Op. 79 (15’) NIELSEN Wind Quintet, Op. 43 (23’)
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£13.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Saturday the 10th of May 2014
14:00 How Cold My Toes
For families and children aged 2-5 Award-winning Travelling Light pack a whole year into one hour, as this enchanting piece of dance theatre takes you on a magical journey through the seasons. From the seed-sprouting vitality of spring to the frosty frozen fingers of winter, this wordless mix of performance, music, and dance will captivate and delight the very youngest children and their families. This charming show bursts with a heightened sense of fun **** - The Guardian  
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£6 or family ticket £20. www.thewitham.org.uk
On Saturday the 10th of May 2014
19:00 The Moon Cannot be Stolen
After 16 years, Kirsten Luckins re-read her India journals only to realise that encountering a former self is just as shocking as getting lost in another culture. ‘The Moon Cannot be Stolen’ takes its title from a zen fable which may or may not be about the search for the authentic self. Let’s say it is. Let’s say that the show is about the same subject. Part dark travelogue, part metaphysical enquiry, inspired by travel diaries re-examined in the cold light of relative maturity – expect poetry, anecdote and even a spot of Tarot-reading. The past really is another country…Kirsten is running a writing workshop alongside the show. Called ‘A Journey Of A Thousand Miles’, it will introduce people to writing from diaries and mindful travelling – even if the journey is only to the corner shop! To book places on the workshop visit www.thewitham.org.uk website.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£5.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Wednesday the 14th of May 2014
19:00 Henry IV, Part I : Royal Shakespeare Company Live
RSC Associate Artist Antony Sher returns to the Company to play the infamous comic knight Falstaff. He is joined by Jasper Britton as Henry IV and Alex Hassell as Prince Hal. Jasper returns following his performance as the Marquis de Sade in Marat/Sade (2011); Alex returns to the RSC following his recent credits in A Midsummer Night's Dream, Cardenio and The City Madam. With his crown under threat from enemies both foreign and domestic, Henry IV prepares for war. Having deposed the previous king, he is only too aware of the tenuousness of his position, and of the price to be paid if he falters. As his father prepares to defend his crown, Prince Hal is languishing in the taverns and brothels of London, revelling in the company of his friend, the notorious Sir John Falstaff. With the onset of the war, Hal and Falstaff are thrust into the brutal reality of the battlefield, where Hal must confront his responsibilities to family and throne.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£14.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Thursday the 15th of May 2014
19:30 Film : 12 Years a Slave (15)
Academy Award-winning historical slave-narrative drama directed by Steve McQueen and starring Chiwetel Ejiofor. The film follows the experience of Solomon Northup (Ejiofor), an African-American living with a wife and two children in Saratoga, New York, who is kidnapped and sold into slavery by men claiming to offer him work as a circus musician. Transported by ship to New Orleans, it isn't long before he is given a new name and sold to William Ford (Benedict Cumberbatch), a relatively empathetic slave owner. But confrontations with the cruel and violent overseer John Tibeats (Paul Dano) lead to Solomon being passed on by Ford to the extremely abusive and alcoholic planter Edwin Epps (Michael Fassbender), who rules his slaves with a whip in one hand and a Bible in the other. Believing the only hope of regaining his freedom is to remain passive for the time being, Solomon ceases fighting against the illegitimacy of his situation until salvation is offered to him by a kindly labourer named Bass (Brad Pitt).
Centre Manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£5.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Saturday the 17th of May 2014
14:00 to 16:00 Acoustic Cafe
FREE music by Cream Tees and Longswords
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
FREE www.thewitham.org.uk
On Saturday the 17th of May 2014
19:30 Harpeth Rising
Named for the small but powerful river in Tennessee, Harpeth Rising creates original songs that layer lush instrumental arrangements with rich harmonies and powerful lyrics. Their songs depict wanderlust, eternal curiosity, class struggle and extraordinary love. The result is a sound that is both rooted in the folk tradition and simultaneously pushing the envelope. Articulate lyricists, expressive and innovative players and singers, Harpeth Rising is the complete package.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£12 on door, £10 advance www.thewitham.org.uk
On Wednesday the 21st of May 2014
19:30 Master Musician : Viv McLean, piano
VIV McLEAN studies at the Royal Academy of Music and won first prize at the 2002 Maria Canals International Piano Competition, Barcelona He has performed throughout the UK ,Europe , Japan and the USA. and has performed concertos with the Philharmonia, the LPO and the RPO He has performed with the Ysaye Quartet and the Leopold Trio, and recorded for Sony Classical and Naxos
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£8.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Thursday the 22nd of May 2014
19:00 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time : National Theatre Live
Following its smash-hit live broadcast in 2012, the National Theatre production of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time returns to cinemas. Based on the acclaimed novel by Mark Haddon, adapted by Simon Stephens and directed by Marianne Elliott, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time has been hailed by The Times as ‘a phenomenal combination of storytelling and spectacle’. Winner of 7 Olivier Awards in 2013, including Best New Play. Christopher, fifteen years old, has an extraordinary brain – exceptional at maths while ill-equipped to interpret everyday life. When he falls under suspicion of killing Mrs Shears' dog Wellington, he records each fact about the event in the book he is writing to solve the mystery of the murder. But his detective work, forbidden by his father, takes him on a frightening journey that upturns his world.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£14.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Thursday the 29th of May 2014
19:30 Film : American Hustle (15)
Based on the Abscam sting operation of the late 1970s and early 1980s, the story follows FBI agent Richie DiMaso (Cooper) as he blackmails conman Irving Rosenfeld (Bale) and his lover Sydney Prosser (Amy Adams) into helping him with a case after a successful investigation into the pair's own foreign banking scam. Although DiMaso's sights are initially set on New Jersey Mayor Carmine Polito (Jeremy Renner), the investigation is broadened to include influential members of Congress who are suspected of taking bribes.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£5.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Friday the 30th of May 2014 until 02 June 2014
10:00 to 16:00 Textile Stories : Contemporary Craft Tour
Highlights Rural Touring Scheme. Textile Stories showcases three artists whose work brings to life real and imagined stories, told through the medium of textiles. Paddy Hartley tells stories of courage in the face of adversity. His ‘Faces of Battle’ was the culmination of four years research, design and production in response to the Gillies Archives and the lives of the facially injured servicemen treated by Sir Harold Gillies during World War One. Stella Adams Schofield’s stories are of the dignity of daily toil and perseverence. ‘The Story of a Quilt’ is a personal response into North Country whole cloth quilting and an exploration of the processes involved in the making of a whole cloth quilt (made from a solid piece of fabric as the top layer). Debra Roberts tells a fascinating story of the values of thrift and patience through the reconstruction of a late eighteenth century sack back gown. The dress, found in a box bought at an auction, has been carefully taken apart, the shadows of old seams and stitches carefully photographed and recorded and the dress, finally reconstructed.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
FREE www.thewitham.org.uk
On Saturday the 31st of May 2014
19:30 The Young 'Uns
The Stockton lads are returning to The Witham by popular demand following a storming pre-Christmas performance. Nobody sleeps when the Young’uns are in town. The may have established their fast-growing reputation in the folk world with sublime a cappella harmonies, but the Teesside trio – Sean Cooney, Michael Hughes and David Eagle – are an unlikely force of nature on stage, beguiling audiences with irrepressible humour, bold vocals, gripping storylines and innate musicality. Describing their gigs as ‘absolute chaos’, they go on stage without set-lists, relying on infallible instinct and their unique rapport with audiences to deliver a killer show.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£12.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Thursday the 05th of June 2014
19:30 Film : The Wolf of Wall Street (15)
Director Martin Scorsese and actor Leonardo DiCaprio come together to tell the true yet staggering story of corruption and excess amongst New York stockbrokers in the 1980s. Not a film for the faint of heart. Revered filmmaker Martin Scorsese directs the true story of New York stockbroker Jordan Belfort (Leonardo DiCaprio). From the American dream to corporate greed, Belfort goes from penny stocks and righteousness to IPOs and a life of corruption in the late 80s. Excess success and affluence in his early twenties as founder of the brokerage firm Stratton Oakmont warranted Belfort the title – “The Wolf of Wall Street.”Money. Power. Women. Drugs. Temptations were for the taking and the threat of authority was irrelevant. For Jordan and his wolf pack, modesty was quickly deemed overrated and more was never enough.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£5.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Thursday the 12th of June 2014
19:00 A Small Family Business : National Theatre Live
A riotous exposure of entrepreneurial greed by Olivier Award-winning playwright Alan Ayckbourn (Bedroom Farce, A Chorus of Disapproval). A Small Family Business returns to the National Theatre for the first time since its celebrated premiere in 1987, when it won the Evening Standard Award for Best New Play. Jack McCracken: a man of principle in a corrupt world. But not for long. Moments after taking over his father-in-law’s business he’s approached by a private detective armed with some compromising information. Jack’s integrity fades away as he discovers his extended family to be thieves and adulterers, looting the business from their suburban homes. Rampant self-interest takes over and comic hysteria builds to a macabre climax.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£14.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Saturday the 14th of June 2014
19:30 Master Musician : Guilio Tampalini, guitar
Giulio Tampalini is from Brescia, North Italy, studying there before continuing in Spain and Germany As soloist he has achieved success at top competitions including 1st Prizes at the “Andres Segovia” Competition, Granada, the “Narcisco Yepes” Competition, San Remo and the “Fernando Sor” Competition, Rome. He has recorded more than 25 CDs for solo guitar, including the complete works of Tarrega and Castelnuova Tedesco.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£8.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Wednesday the 18th of June 2014
19:00 Henry IV, Part II : Royal Shakespeare Company Live
RSC Associate Artist Antony Sher returns to the Company to play the infamous comic knight Falstaff. He is joined by Jasper Britton as Henry IV and Alex Hassell as Prince Hal. Jasper returns following his performance as the Marquis de Sade in Marat/Sade (2011); Alex returns to the RSC following his recent credits in A Midsummer Night's Dream, Cardenio and The City Madam. King Henry's health is failing as a second rebellion threatens to surface. Intent on securing his legacy, he is uncertain that Hal is a worthy heir, believing him to be more concerned with earthly pleasures than with the responsibility of rule. Meanwhile, Falstaff is sent to the countryside to recruit fresh troops. Among the unwitting locals, opportunities for embezzlement and profiteering prove impossible to resist as Falstaff gleefully indulges in the business of lining his own pockets. As the King's health continues to worsen, Hal must choose between duty and loyalty to an old friend in Shakespeare's heartbreaking conclusion to this pair of plays.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£14.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Thursday the 19th of June 2014
19:30 Film : The Invisible Woman (12A)
Ralph Fiennes directs and stars in this romantic drama adapted from Clare Tomalin's book about the relationship between celebrated 19th-century novelist Charles Dickens and his mistress. School teacher Nelly Ternan (Felicity Jones), now a wife and mother, looks back on her life as a young woman when, while working as an actress, she met the 45-year-old Dickens (Fiennes). Having become disenchanted with his wife Catherine (Joanna Scanlan), Dickens finds himself enamoured by the equally smitten Nelly and the two become romantically involved. However, they must keep their relationship a secret, meaning Nelly must live an almost invisible existence. The cast also includes Kristin Scott Thomas, Tom Hollander and Michelle Fairley.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£5.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Wednesday the 16th of July 2014
19:30 Master Musician : Adam Skoumal, piano
ADAM SKOUMAL studied at the Prague Conservatory, and in America in Dallas, Texas and the Manhattan School of Music, New York. He has attended masterclasses by Lazar Bermann, Phillipe Entremont and Andras Schiff, and was awarded First Prize in the Czech Conservatories Competition and his playing of his own composition won a special prize for the best performance of a Czech contemporary piece. He has performed throughout the Czech Republic as well as in the USA, Britain, France and Spain.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£8.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Wednesday the 03rd of September 2014
19:00 The Two Gentlemen of Verona : Royal Shakespeare Company Live
Valentine and Proteus are best friends, until they fall in love with the same girl. Having travelled to Milan in search of adventure, they both fall for the Duke’s daughter Silvia. But Proteus is already sworn to his sweetheart, Julia, at home in Verona, and the Duke thinks Valentine is not good enough for his Silvia. With friendship forgotten, the rivals’ affections quickly get out of hand as the four young lovers find themselves on a wild chase through the woods, confused by mistaken identity and threatened by fierce outlaws before they find a path to reconciliation. Simon Godwin makes his RSC debut to direct Shakespeare’s exuberant romantic comedy. He is Associate Director of the Royal Court and his production of Strange Interlude recently played to critical acclaim at the National Theatre. This is the first time in 45 years The Two Gentlemen of Verona has been performed in full production on the Royal Shakespeare Theatre stage.
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£14.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Wednesday the 08th of October 2014
20:00 Danny and the Chamions of the World
Danny & The Champions Of The World set the gold standard for UK Americana. Their latest album 'Stay True' was called "wonderful" by no lesser authority than Bob Harris. Danny & The Champions has always been a pretty loose collection of great musicians, songwriters, stowaways and adventurers. The current line up is the most steady so far - it’s not a collective of folks now, it’s a band, a great band. "...a band that seem to be getting better and better and more soulful with each release" - Gideon Coe, BBC 6 MUSIC
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
£10.00 www.thewitham.org.uk
On Saturday the 22nd of November 2014 until 23 November 2014
10:00 to 16:00 Designer Maker Market
The emphasis will be on original and contemporary work, with a strong 'up-cycled' theme. There will be an opportunity to meet the designer-makers in person and buy unique handcrafted goods of gallery quality. As well as talented craftspeople selling their work, some will be demonstrating their skills and throughout the weekend there will also be ‘have a go’ sessions where people of all ages can try their hand at learning a new craft. There are still a small number of stalls available for anyone who can fit the very strict criteria – work must be contemporary and highly original and all goods must be designed and made by the stallholder. Artists should contact Events Organiser Kathryn Guy directly by emailing kathrynguy@btinternet.com
Centre Manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
FREE www.thewitham.org.uk
Weekly Contact Notes
Thursdays
10:10 Music with Mummy
Come along and join Emily for some singing, dancing and fun. Classes help develop children's rhythm, speech and listening skills. For pre-school children, babies upwards. No pre-booking required. For more information please contact emily.wilson@hotmail.co.uk or 07973 909758 or www.facebook.com/MusicWithEmily 10% discount given to attendees at The Dispensary Cafe
Centre manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
www.thewitham.org.uk
Monthly (first of a month) Contact Notes
The first Wednesday of every month
09:30 to 15:30 Chic Vintique Fair
Vintage collectables, fashions, arts, crafts, jewellery, home-ware, antiques, retro and much more. Always something different at Chic Vintique For all details and booking information contact Bridget at BR Events, see www.brevents.co.uk, email website@brevents.co.uk or call 07779342782
Centre manager info@th witham.org.uk
01833 631107
Adults 50p. Until December 14 www.thewitham.org.uk
The first Saturday of every month
10:00 to 16:00 Northern Crafts
Everything from jam to jewellery. With over 15 stalls of locally handmade goods and luxury gifts on sale, why not pop along and have a look. Entry is free and everyone is welcome. You can also enjoy the refreshments on offer in the Cafe Bar during your visit. For more information see www.northerncrafts.co.uk or email northerncrafts@outlook.com
Centre Manager info@thewitham.org.uk
01833 631107
FREE www.thewitham.org.uk

LOCATION

Directions

A variety of hire options are available, from meeting rooms to hot-desks and The Dispensary Cafe Bar offers drinks, snacks and meals.  For more information please contact The Witham.