How many shows has the Waterside Theatre’s most loyal fan seen?

Aylesbury Waterside Theatre's most loyal customer Clive Ashby is congratulated by deputy general manager Simon Maples - also pictured are sales advisors Lucy Parr and Gemma Strathdee
Aylesbury Waterside Theatre's most loyal customer Clive Ashby is congratulated by deputy general manager Simon Maples - also pictured are sales advisors Lucy Parr and Gemma Strathdee
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If you’re after advice on what to watch at the theatre, you’d do worse than to consult with Clive Ashby.

The 72-year-old has seen an amazing 157 shows at the Waterside and has been the theatre’s most loyal customer since it opened five years ago this week.

The Bedgrove resident, who is due to watch stand-up Jim Davidson tonight (Tuesday) said: “I did not realise I had been to that many!

“The first was actually before the theatre officially opened – it was a show featuring songs from musicals.”

The shows that Mr Ashby has seen at the theatre range from Legally Blonde and other West End musicals to one night only performances.

He has also attended all of the theatre’s pantomimes.

He said: “My favourites include Russell Watson’s show, South Pacific, Jersey Boys and Annie.

“I love the building and I think we are lucky to have a theatre in Aylesbury.

“I used to go to the theatre a lot in London before the one in Aylesbury was built.

“It’s different to watching television and it is a good day or evening out.”

Mr Ashby, who is now retired but previously worked for a builders merchant said that he tended to go to the theatre on his own.

He said: “I go on my own because my wife Mary isn’t a big theatre fan however she has been with me a few times.

“Some of the staff recognise my face even if they don’t know my name.

“I like to sit in the centre stalls about six to eight rows back.”

There have been more than 2,000 performances in the main auditorium since the theatre officially opened in October 2010 with the ballet Swan Lake.

Mr Ashby added that he had no idea how much he had spent on tickets over the years – but it would run into the thousands.

He said: “I’ve never thought about it but on average I probably pay about £20 to £25 for a ticket.”

Mr Ashby did not join the hundreds of people that queued on Monday to take advantage of discounted tickets.

He said: “I have already booked for this year!”