The Cotswolds will have a new venue to enjoy live music, theatre and comedy this summer.

The Amphitheatre at Berybank Park, in Oddington just outside Stow, will open for a new performing arts season in June.

The 500-seater venue was created in memory of Janet Cockell, a local woman with a passion for storytelling, the performing arts and the Cotswolds.

Janet’s daughter Judy Reaves, a former West End theatre designer, heads the creative programme with her husband, David Hamblett.

She said: “It really is incredibly exciting, particularly after the two years we have all had with the pandemic.

“It is very much a homegrown, family, project, with a little bit of outside help along the way, and we hope that spirit will rub off on the audience.”

Cotswold Journal: The amphitheatre has been sculpted into the land and features views of the Evenlode ValleyThe amphitheatre has been sculpted into the land and features views of the Evenlode Valley

Mrs Greaves added: “I don’t want it to feel like a spaceship that’s landed in the Cotswolds.

“It is going to be a community venue, a place for everyone.

“It is so lovely that people can gather outside again and it is the most beautiful, breath-taking, location.

“I hope that it offers something different to other venues in the area and I believe we have something for everyone.”

The project was the vision of Mrs Reaves’ father, Keith Cockell, with local farmer Jono Dudfield helping to sculpt the venue, boasting views across the Evenlode Valley.

There is also a pavilion equipped with a bar and restaurant celebrating local produce, as well as an alternative performance space in case of bad weather.

It will host a wide range of performances, including the Cotswold Comedy Festival which launches this year.

The festival will feature some of comedy’s biggest names including Marcus Brigstocke, Hal Cruttenden and Shaparak Khorsandi.

There will also be jazz nights, opera, outdoor cinema, cabaret, and the Real Garden Festival.

Cotswold Journal: The venue will host the first-ever Cotswold Comedy FestivalThe venue will host the first-ever Cotswold Comedy Festival

However, the event Mrs Reaves is most excited by is the performance of As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning, which tells the tale of Gloucestershire-born writer Laurie Lee.

The show, a concert by Orchestra of the Swan, will star her son Charlie Hamblett, who many will recognise from Killing Eve, and Anton Lesser, who has starred in such shows as Game of Thrones and The Crown.

Before all that though, the theatre will open with Shakespeare’s Globe on Tour’s production of Julius Caesar on Tuesday, June 14.

The Amphitheatre’s first season will then close with a Picnic in the Park Proms, in aid of Kate’s Home Nursing.