Pantomime now a Panto-Crime...

Rudolph and Santa take a break during rehearsals at Coppers Tea Rooms in Leyland with owner Pam Campbell
Rudolph and Santa take a break during rehearsals at Coppers Tea Rooms in Leyland with owner Pam Campbell

Leyland’s St Ambrose Players are getting into the festive spirit by preparing for their Christmas performance, entitled Sherlock Holmes: The Panto-Crime.

Cast members met at Coppers Tea Rooms in the town centre this week, to get inspiration for the detective play by visiting the old police station cells.

Father Christmas, played by Tony Stevens, and Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, played by Rosa Bowe and Sophie Charleston, also enjoyed being served tea and cake by the cafe’s owner, Pam Campbell.

Sarah White, from the St Ambrose Players, said: “The pantomime is a new one this year, written and directed by one of our own members, David White, who has written several successful pantomimes for us before, including A Christmas Carol, Snow White and Cinderella.

“Despite the different concept, this is a highly traditional pantomime in format with all the usual slapstick comedy such as ‘it’s behind you’ sequences, a pantomime animal in the form of Rudolph, and a Dame, so it’s the perfect family event for Christmas.”

The show is about Rudolph being kidnapped by the evil Mrs Moriarty from Toyland just a few days before Christmas

Father Christmas is persuaded to ask world-famous detective Sherlock Holmes, and his faithful companion Dr Watson, to find him, or Christmas will have to be cancelled.

Their investigations lead them through the Alps and the realm of the Ice Queen to a mysterious Castle in Switzerland.

Sarah added: “Following the traditional pantomime formula of audience participation, as well as singing and dancing and laugh-out-loud humour for audience members both young and old, this pantomime is guaranteed to put everyone in the mood for a very Merry Christmas – assuming Holmes and Watson succeed.”

Sherlock Holmes is played by John Sangster, David Hughes is Dr Watson, Matt Clark is the Dame, Joan Watkinson is Mrs Moriarty and Kath Green is the Ice Queen.

There are other characters involved, including the Abominable Snowman and Mrs Busy and Mrs Body, plus a full chorus and dancers.

It runs at St Ambrose Church Hall, Moss Lane, from December 4 to December 8, at 7.30pm each night (including a matinee on December 8 at 2.30pm).

Tickets can be bought by calling 07432432586 or 01772 452296.