FAQs for teachers
Get to know us.
Deciding to book a show, workshop, or anything can be daunting. What if I book and change my mind, have I lost my money? What happens if the event cannot go ahead because of a COVID-19 outbreak and I have to cancel? What if the show is no good? These are all rational concerns, so we like to approach these questions rationally. When we manage the commercial relationship between us, our objectives are threefold, to be fair, just and reasonable. We intend to give you and your students’ a fantastic day. However, we understand that things can go wrong for both parties. COVID-19 has undoubtedly taught us this. Therefore we try to be as flexible as possible whilst respecting each party's interests.
The following are some answers to those frequent questions, which may ease your concerns but do not hesitate to contact us with any questions.
1. Who is the National Production Company?
National Production Company Limited is incorporated in England and Wales with the company number: 10684573. We are based at 71-75 Shelton Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2H 9JQ. Since 2017 we have been touring the UK with family theatre, visiting notable venues. We have worked with the Ambassador Theatre Group, HQ Theatres, ASM Global, and independent regional theatres. We produce works such as Shakespeare, Michael Morpurgo's Private Peaceful and not forgetting an array of Terry Deary productions.
In addition to our theatre work, we visit schools around the country, helping to ignite imagination and catalyse learning. This began with a teacher requesting us to visit their school after seeing one of our shows. Years later, this is a big part of our business.
2. How do I book?
The best way to book with us is to send an initial email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Include as much information as possible regarding your requirements and preferences along with any dates you are looking at.
One of our team will be in touch to discuss the details. After our discussions with you, this will culminate in a formal proposed offer by us in the form of an engagement letter. At this point, feel free to share this with other members of your school and take time to consider your options.
Should you be happy with the offer and accept, we will seek to collect the deposit of £150 plus VAT. We charge a deposit of £150 plus VAT per booking, so if you book one show or 100 shows simultaneously, the deposit stays the same. Further information about deposits is below.
Upon payment of the deposit, we will set the wheels in motion at our end to prepare the show(s) for your school.
Should you wish to decline or want to amend the offer in the engagement letter, please send your proposal to the National Production Company. We will review that with a view to adapting or withdrawing our most recent offer.
If we hear nothing after a reasonable amount of time which we deem 14 days, we will assume you have declined the offer. Then, National Production Company will withdraw the offer.
3. Can I change my mind about the booking?
Yes, we give everyone 14 days from the date of accepting the offer the chance to change their mind, a cooling-off period. In that time, you can backtrack with no questions asked and receive a full refund of any money paid. The only exception is if the service occurs within the 14-day cooling-off period. In this case, we will keep what's necessary to cover the costs of the services provided until the point you cancel.
After 14 days, we will consider your reasons for cancelling and look to support you through that. We will look at other options with you, such as rescheduling at no extra cost. We want the event to happen as much as you.
4. Tell me more about what happens if I cancel after the cooling-off period?
If you choose to cancel after the cooling-off period and before any services have started, we can keep some or all of the money paid to cover actual losses. We will seek to be as fair as possible. We will also make every effort to mitigate potential costs. We will not keep any amount that can be saved by finding another customer or by cancelling any suppliers we have employed.
If you intend to cancel, we suggest you contact us as soon as possible to help relieve any financial burdens for both sides.
5. What if you or I need to cancel for reasons outside our control?
A 'Force Majeure' is where the event is unforeseeable, external, and irresistible. This can be a natural disaster, war or something like Covid-19, although this is a non-exhaustive list. We will seek to rearrange in the first instance but should a cancellation be necessary, we will refund you in full.
6. Can I adapt my booking?
Yes, we are open to being flexible where we can. We will seek to reach a mutually agreeable solution. Cancellation may be the only option where an alternative date cannot be found which caters for both parties.
7. Why do I need to pay a deposit?
A deposit is a statement that you are keen for the event to take place and gives us the confidence to invest resources into your show.
It is worth remembering that the deposit is also a part payment of the purchase price and not an extra charge.
8. When will I have to pay the total amount?
Generally, we collect the remainder due after the final day of our services. We will send an invoice via email to settle the total amount due, minus any previous payment(s) such as the deposit. You will then have 14 days to pay this.
If you book several shows, we may seek to collect payments as we go. If this is the case, we will discuss this with you before confirming a booking to ensure there are no surprises. So there is no need to worry.
9. What if I forget to pay an invoice?
We will get in touch via email to remind you that the payment is due. We understand things can get forgotten and trust it is an honest mistake. Therefore we will give you another 14 days without charges as a goodwill gesture to settle the payment. After this point, 28 days from the invoice's issue date, we reserve the right to claim statutory interest, which is currently 8% plus the Bank of England base rate for business to business transactions. A new invoice will be sent to reflect this, should we decide to take this action. If necessary, we may also seek legal support in recouping the money owed. However, we are open to hearing why a default has occurred, and we will seek to support you where we can.
10. What if I am not happy?
We hope this will not be the case, but as said before, things can go wrong for both parties. Life is very unpredictable.
Upon hearing your concerns, we will look to resolve the issue in the first instance. However, it would be naive not to recognise that some problems may not have a simple solution. In these cases, we will look to negotiate a mutually agreeable outcome. If relations become strained, we can look at Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) to resolve our issues. ADR refers to less confrontational and cost-effective ways of resolving disputes when compared to traditional civil court proceedings. After negotiation, we would look at mediation. This is where an independent third party helps the disputing parties achieve a mutually acceptable outcome. Should this be unsuccessful, our final stop is arbitration. Arbitration is where an independent third party considers the facts and takes an often binding decision.
However, our goal is to be fair, just and reasonable wherever possible. Lengthy disputes benefit neither party, so we are always keen to get on top of problems before they become deep-rooted.
11. What is expected of me, the school, on the event day(s)?
We will need access to safe power supplies.
We will require a dry, safe and flat area to perform. If you have a stage, we would be keen to use that.
The school will need to ensure that our performers, the set and equipment are not at any risk of harm and damage within their scope of control. This includes an appropriate amount of staff being on hand to manage students when necessary.
We will also need free parking for our cast members and sufficient access to the performance area at least 2 hours before a show. Sometimes we will need more time than 2 hours. If this is the case, we will advise you when you are booking.
The cast will need access to a secure place to change and leave personal belongings.
12. What do I expect from you, the National Production Company?
We will perform our shows and workshops with reasonable care and skill as expected of a theatre company.
We will supply the performers, set and props.
We will have Public Liability Insurance for up to £5 million and Employers Liability Insurance for up to £10 million. Just ask us if you want to see the certificates.
We will get in touch within around four weeks to check the finer details.
13. Can I take photos and videos?
Yes, you can take photos and videos of sections but, unfortunately, not the whole performance because of copyright. However, some pictures and videos are a great way to help students remember what they learned and get the word out to parents. So we actively encourage you to grab a phone, tablet or camera and snap away.
Our performers can get distracted by flash photography, so we politely ask that the flash on devices is turned off.
14. Are there any hidden fees?
No, we will make the total amount due known in our engagement letter.