Two-time Oscar winner Dame Emma Thompson has become the new patron of local performance company District64.

The theatrical company was originally created by BAFTA award-winning actor Jane Trainer, alongside Josh Barrow, Anthony Mackey and Leanne Molloy, is based in Maidenhead and Marlow and works with 9 to 20-year-olds with the hope of creating theatre for younger people.

Famed for her roles in The Remains of the Day, Nanny McPhee and Harry Potter, Mrs Thompson was drawn to the company due to their commitment to encourage young performers to champion issues they are passionate about.

Dame Emma Thompson said: “I am delighted to be District64's Patron and to support their work and purpose. It's such a joy to see young people using their creativity within the Arts in such a powerful and positive way - to elicit change and inspire conversation - about the important issues we all face in the world. District64 is such an exciting, innovative and talented young company and I am proud to be District!”

Staff and performers at the company are thrilled at the recognition her patronage brings to their work and productions, the latest of which is heading to the famed Edinburgh Festival this summer.

Co-Artistic Director Anthony Mackey said: “We are beyond honored and thrilled to have such an iconic Patron of District64. To have her affirmation and endorsement of the work we do and what we stand for means so much to all District64 members.

“Emma is not only a wonderful actor and outstanding role model, but also an activist and passionate voice for many incredible causes which are also dear to D64's hearts. We can't wait to welcome her to our performances at the Edinburgh Festival in August and are excited about our future work together.”