Are Cheshire pantomimes going ahead as Covid cases rise?

The pantomime season is in full swing, with productions taking place right across Cheshire.

Unfortunately, Covid cases have been rising across the UK and in Cheshire, which has left many theatre-goers wondering if their visit to the pantomime will be going ahead.

At present, in England, there’s no major lockdown restrictions in place, which means that shows have legally been able to go ahead as planned.

Read more of the top stories from across Cheshire here.

Earlier this month, CheshireLive put together a round-up of some of the pantomimes taking place across the county this festive season.

With the recent surge in Covid cases across Cheshire, and with Omicron starting to account for more and more cases, we decided to revisit the story and see if pantomimes are still going ahead.

Oliver Twist at Storyhouse in Chester

The Storyhouse has confirmed that it’s production of Oliver Twist is going ahead as planned at present.

If there’s any changes to any of the shows, an email or text message will be sent as soon as a decision is made.

The show, which has adapted Charles Dickens’ famous novel, has proved highly popular with visitors.

The production has taken place at the city centre venue since December 4 and will finish on January 16.

Ellesmere Port Civic Centre, Ellesmere Port: Jack and the Beanstalk

Ellesmere Port Civic Centre has been hosting Anton Benson Productions Jack and the Beanstalk this festive season.

The much loved production has seen Crissy Rock take up the role as ‘Fairy ‘Cross the Mersey’.

The production is still going ahead, with the last show taking place on December 24.

Lyceum Theatre, Crewe: Sleeping Beauty

The production of Sleeping Beauty will be taking place at the Crewe Lyceum
The production of Sleeping Beauty will be taking place at the Crewe Lyceum
(Image: Stoke Sentinel)

This festive season, the Lyceum Theatre has been hosting Crossroads Pantomimes production of Sleeping Beauty.

The show features comedian and TV personality Bobby Davro, X Factor finalist Amelia Lily along with Malcolm Lord.

According to the Theatre’s Covid protocol, which is found by calling their phone number, all scheduled events are going ahead.

The message states: “All scheduled events will be going ahead as planned, and any updates will be communicated by email.

“Following the government’s Plan B announcement, all visitors aged 11+ are required to wear face coverings throughout this visit unless exempt or eating or drinking.

“If you are exempt, please let a member of the team know when you arrive.”

The production will run until January 2, with tickets available from the Crewe Lyceum website or by calling the box office.

Northwich Memorial Court, Northwich: Sleeping Beauty

Anton Benson Productions Sleeping Beauty has also been taking place at Northwich Memorial Court this festive season.

The next showing of Sleeping Beauty is on Boxing Day after one of the cast tested positive for Covid.

An update on the Northwich Memorial Court Facebook page read: “We’re sorry but due to a positive Covid test for one of our cast members, we have taken the difficult decision to cancel performances of Sleeping Beauty at Northwich Memorial Court on the 23rd and 24th December.

“Whilst we have stand by cast ready to perform, delays in accessing testing for other cast members means that we must take this precautionary measure.

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“We’ll be in touch with anyone who has tickets for these performances in the next couple of days to arrange transfers or refunds so you won’t need to do anything until you hear from us.

“We would ask that you don’t contact Ticketsource or the Box Office until we’ve made contact with you. If we’re not able to make contact by 11am on the 24th December, your tickets will automatically be refunded. We will post further updates regarding performances after 24th as soon as they are available.

“We’re really sorry for any disappointment and thank you for your patience and understanding at this difficult time. The Brio Entertainment Team”

Parr Hall, Warrington: Snow White

Parr Hall in Warrington
(Image: Google Street View)

Tony Peers Productions will be staging their take on the pantomime classic Snow White in January 2022.

The family favourite fairy tale, which will take place between January 7 and January 16, is set to be a hit with kids and adults alike.

Tickets for the show are on sale now, with the production, at present, still going ahead.

Theatr Clwyd, Mold: Beauty and the Beast

Although not in Cheshire, the Theatr Clwyd is always a hit with residents who travel to see the pantomime productions held there.

The acclaimed rock ’n’ roll panto, which is written by Christian Patterson, was back this year with Beauty and the Beast.

Sadly, due to Covid restrictions, any shows from December 25 onwards have been cancelled.

A post on the theatres social media page said: “Sadly, due to the recent announcement introducing social distancing to help reduce the spread of Covid and the Omicron variant we have been forced to cancel the following upcoming events: Beauty & The Beast from 25 Dec.

“We’re very sorry for the disappointment, this is an incredibly busy time for the theatre and with such a huge number of people to get in touch with we’re asking your patience while we process all bookings.

“There is no need to contact our box office – please bear with us, we’ll be in touch as soon as we can. Thank you for your continued support and love for the arts.”

The Grange Theatre, Hartford: Cinderella

The Grange Theatre in Hartford, Cheshire, has been hosting KD Theatre Productions version of family favourite Cinderella since December 11.

The show stars Northwich favourites Rob Stevens as Fairy Godmother and Oliver Scott as Buttons.

The show is set to run until January 2, 2022, and looks set to do so, pending any government restrictions.

The theatre recently confirmed via their Facebook page that their Christmas Eve performance was sold out.

A post on their page this afternoon (December 23) read: “We are getting a lot of calls about Christmas eve performances asking if there is a waiting list which there isn’t sorry.

“Whilst we are so humbled by the demand, but both shows are sold out tomorrow. There is availability tonight at 6pm and on other shows.

“Any returns are automatically put back onto sale via the online box office. Keep checking back. “All shows are selling extremely fast due to so many local venues now either closed or closing.”

Cheshire Live – Cheshire