PANTOMIMES have been entertaining audiences for hundreds of years and are part of Christmas just as much as turkey and tinsel. 

And anyone who pops along to the Hereford's last offering will not be disappointed.

The Courtyard has chosen Dick Whittington as its production, and I was delighted to be invited as one of its guests to watch one of the shows. 


The story surrounds the historical figure of Richard Whittington and how he made his fortune, eventually becoming the Lord Mayor of London. 

Callum Henderson plays the leading role and his relationship with his cat, Tiddles, played by Andrew Franklin, will pull at your heartstrings.

Hereford Times: The cast of Dick WhittingtonThe cast of Dick Whittington (Image: Mark Douet)

But with every panto, you have to have a dame and a villain. 

Dion Davies plays Dame Penny Drops perfectly and there are plenty of innuendos to have you laughing in your seat. Although, if you're in the front two rows, be prepared to play an active role, like Andy did when I visited. 

There are also plenty of local references, such as Dick explaining that he's from Hereford, 'near Leominster'. 

The villain, meanwhile, is King Rat, played Chris Chandler, who tries his damnedest to prevent Dick from becoming Lord Mayor, a role that he says he should have. 

Every time he came on stage there was the customary booing from the audience and of course the 'he's behind you' chants. 

As much as I enjoyed all of their performances, for me, the standout character was Maisie, a robot played perfectly by Madeleine Macmahon. Her accent and mannerisms were outstanding, and without giving anything away, she is involved in a sweet moment at the end of the show. 

Hereford Times: From left: Dick Whittington, Tiddles the Cat, Maisie and AliceFrom left: Dick Whittington, Tiddles the Cat, Maisie and Alice (Image: Mark Douet)

The other main character is Alice Fitzwarren. Played by Sian Gentle-Green, she is the daughter of Alderman Fitzwarren and the love interest of Dick.

As well as fantastic acting, there is plenty of singing and dancing, with Dani Hardy, Elliott Brady, Alicia Ally and Matty Tortice showcasing their skills.

Dick Whittington is being shown at The Courtyard up until January 6.

Ticket prices vary depending on what day you book. Some cost as little as £12 per adult, rising to £28. 

You can also book you seats for next year's pantomime, which is Sleeping Beauty.

Visit or call 01432 340555.