A York costume company - which has dressed actors in productions across the UK for almost 20 years - is to put its catalogue of outfits up for auction after its owners decided to call it a day.

Dress Circle of York supplied costumes for local and national theatrical productions including ‘Les Miserables’, ‘The Sound of Music’, and ‘Fiddler on the Roof’, before deciding to draw the final curtain and close permanently on December 19, 2020, with the owners to retire.

Following the closure, the owners decided to sell the contents of Dress Circle through Kirkbymoorside based Ryedale Auctioneers, which also appears on television in Really/Discovery’s ‘The Yorkshire Auction House’.

York Press: Costumes featured in a production of Cinderella Costumes featured in a production of Cinderella (Image: Ryedale Auctioneers)

The business was established in 2002 by Stephen and Jill Outhwaite in an empty barn on their farm in Haxby and was an immediate success.

Over the next 18 years Dress Circle provided quality costumes and props for theatre companies and individuals across the UK, and became a well-known name in the industry.

Read next:

News of the business’ closure came in the form of a written statement on its Facebook page in November 2020.

The statement read: “Jill, Stephen and the team are extremely sad to announce that Dress Circle of York will permanently close on the 19th of December 2022, and Jill and Stephen will retire.

“We would like to thank all of our valued customers for their support, laughs, friendliness, understanding, cakes and chocolate over the past 18 years.

“We will miss you and wish you all the very best of luck in the future.

“Stay safe and well as we take out final bows.”

York Press: A costume of Nana the dog from Peter Pan A costume of Nana the dog from Peter Pan (Image: Ryedale Auctioneers)

The contents will be auctioned off in an online timed auction via Ryedale Auctioneers’ website from May 9 to 12.

This includes over 14,000 costumes, with everything from vintage wedding dresses to squirrel costumes, to full sets of dresses for ‘My Fair Lady’, up for grabs.

Other items include ‘Aladdin’ and ‘Spamalot’ costumes, over 1000 hats, ex Opera North costumes, stage makeup, theatre props, and more.

York Press: The costumes are to go under the hammer online by Ryedale Auctioneers The costumes are to go under the hammer online by Ryedale Auctioneers (Image: Ryedale Auctioneers)

Viewings will be available to the items over three days, on May 7, 9, and 10, between the hours of 10am and 4pm, at Dress Circle of York, Low Grange Farm, Haxby, York, YO32 2QW.

Angus Ashworth, the director of Ryedale Auctioneers, said: “It’s a remarkable and extensive collection that rarely comes on the market and we hope to see interest from across the country.”

For more information, and to bid, visit: https://www.ryedaleauctioneers.com/

York Press: Angus AshworthAngus Ashworth (Image: Newsquest)