The dancing, expertly and imaginatively choreographed by Bridget Buckley and Claire Swarbrick, complements the dynamic direction by Carol Buckley, which makes this a first-class family show.
Add to this the accomplished live band, beautiful scenery and some of the best costumes I have seen in an amateur production and you have all the ingredients for a joyous evening (or afternoon) out.
Songs are sung with confidence and someone’s ingenious idea enables the audience to see what goes on inside the Soothsayer’s crystal ball and in the Sheriff’s dreams.
Harriet Buckley gives a lovely, self-assured performance in the eponymous role as she takes control of her band of merry men – adults as well as delightful children – and Emma Redmond is perfect as Maid Marion.
John Nickson enjoys the booing – strutting through his role as the evil Sheriff of Nottingham – and Dominic Swarbrick is delightfully outrageous as Nanny Nora Tittle-Tattle.
Leading us through the story is the likeable Simon Bentham as Much Miller who handles the comedy superbly with the help of hapless Nickit (Nigel Parsons) and Scarper (Tom Armitt).
What I particularly liked about the comedy was that there was just enough daftness without resorting to stupidity. Well done.
Space does not allow me to name everyone but I must congratulate the cast on their diction, timing and stage presence, all of which helped make the characters believable.
There is a very funny schoolroom scene, a camping trip to Sherwood Forest and a visit to Nottingham Goose Fair where a golden marrow is the prize for Nottingham’s Got Talent.
This panto has it all – and there’s even a reference to the Lancashire Evening Post!