A DRAMA group has been rewarded for its community work.

Members of Dramatic Action, which is Bolton at Home’s customer drama group, have earned AQA accredited qualifications for their production of Woody’s Story — a play about a tenant who encounters social isolation and depression.

The play, which has been released on DVD, is based on a former member’s real story and was performed on location in Queens Park.

The 19 volunteers, aged from 16 to 69, were presented with the AQA Using the Drama Process certificates by Bolton Wanderers’ mascot, Lofty the Lion, at the Reebok Stadium.

The qualification recognises the use of still images, hot seating and role play.

Su Draper, aged 45, from Bolton, who has been a Dramatic Action member for two years and plays the lead role in Woody’s Story, said: “Because we’ve experienced struggles in our own lives, we’re in a position to put them on the stage or on film to encourage people to stay clear of trouble.

“I felt exhilarated after gaining the certificate.

“It’s really important to me because I’ve turned something bad into something good.”

Val Hulme, customer engagement officer for Bolton at Home, said this was the first qualification for some group members and stressed how important the group is for boosting people’s confidence.

She added: “People who find it hard to express themselves verbally can do so through the drama.

“It’s nice to see such a diverse group learning together and guiding each other.”

Dramatic Action, which aims to raise awareness of topical issues such as illegal money-lending and stranger danger, have produced and performed eight stories based on their life experiences.

They have performed at schools and public events, and have created radio theatre with Bolton FM.

The Woody’s Story DVD will be used by Bolton at Home as part of a training programme for new tenants.