LANE End Players staged a lively version of this popular pantomime with a vivacious chorus and some talented principals. Sophie Marshall was impressive as Queen Rat with her entourage of little rats, all superbly made up.

Both Dick and Alice his love interest were well played and comedy was provided by Idle Jack, Captain Cod and the suitably dippy Skate the Mate.

The costumes were gorgeous and credit must go to those in wardrobe.

The superb lighting and sound especially in the storm scene on board ship and the clever use of the smoke machine all added to the general atmosphere.

The set design and painters were as always excellent and I especially liked the perspective in the Highgate Hill backdrop. Musical director was Sarah Westcott who very competently played keyboard with Raymond Medhurst on percussion using his skill to emphasise the usual corny jokes one comes to expect in pantomime.

A lively song before the finale which included the audience was just the right length and everyone joined in enthusiastically. The joyful finale with the audience clapping along sent everyone out feeling better for having braved the cold to attend.