Ian Adams, who again takes on the role of Lichfield 's favourite Dame, has written and directed the Garrick's annual pantomime for the ninth year in succession. And what a fabulous job he makes of it.
As well as the traditional panto ingredients, such as booing the villain, a thigh-slapping hero, and children (and adults) screaming "he's behind you", Ian has also thrown in a number of welcome additions.
Dame Trott with other members of the cast (credit Pamela Raith Photography)
These include a wonderful slapstick take on 'The 12 Days of Christmas' involving a well-known TV shopping channel, an hilarious routine around supermarket name puns, and jokes clearly aimed at adult members of the audience including references to George Osborne and a garlic diet.
Simon and Princess Jill lead dance routine (credit Pamela Raith Photography)
Ian takes on the role of Dame Mary Trott who is faced with losing 'her' dairy farm to the Giant and his evil henchman Hemlock, splendidly played by Graham Cole in a complete change from his previous long-running appearances as PC Tony Stamp in ITV police drama 'The Bill'.
Dame Trott, the evil Hemlock and King Percival
But there are excellent performances all round, including Jordan Ginger as Simon, Jo-Anne Stevens as Jill, Dominic Adam Griffin as Jack, Tony Stansfield as King Percival and Hannah Bennett as Fairy Buttermilk.
But this all-singing show is almost stolen by Daisy the tap dancing cow and a delightful quartet of singing sheep.
Lichfield Garrick playing host to Jack and the Beanstalk
I love it when pantomimes make current political/satirical in-jokes; it means that even if the show has been put on a hundred times before, it is always different, and makes it more appealing to adults.