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BNPS.co.uk (01202 558833)
Pic: PhilYeomans/BNPS<br />
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Mark Poulton with his puppets Punch and Judy on Weymouth beach.<br />
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One of Britain's longest-running Punch and Judy shows is in jeopardy because the man behind it says he cannot afford to keep it going.<br />
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Mark Poulton, who runs the show in Weymouth, Dorset, said a shorter holiday season has hit his takings but his expenses and overheads remain the same.<br />
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He blamed strict rules preventing parents from taking their children out of school during term-time, reducing his usual 17-week season to just seven weeks, and said school groups have also stopped coming in July due to budget cuts.<br />
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The seaside town has had a Punch and Judy show since 1880, but Mr Poulton says he relies on donations and with audiences dwindling he will not be able to continue the seaside tradition past this summer season without outside support.