St Andrew’s Panto opens on Saturday

A cast of 60 amateur performers will take to the stage once again this year as the St Andrew’s Pantomime Group prepares to perform its latest production – Sleeping Beauty.

The Beeston group, which started in 1970, will be doing 13 shows from 16-30 January at St Andrew’s church hall on Old Lane.

Bill Taylor, who plays the Dame ‘Cookie’ and Ian Noble, her son ‘Robert’, in rehearsal
Bill Taylor, who plays the Dame ‘Cookie’ and Ian Noble, her son ‘Robert’, in rehearsal

For those of you not familiar with the Sleeping Beauty story here’s a quick recap: King Stephen and Queen Leah are celebrating the Christening of their baby daughter, the Princess Aurora. All is well until Maleficent, a particularly nasty fairy, turns up uninvited and casts a spell that could spell disaster. Thankfully Aurora has twelve fairy godmothers who are good and kind and a whole host of friends who will stop at nothing to ensure that everyone lives happily ever after.

The action is set in the magical world of Mentopiam and has plenty of interesting characters and questions. Will Dick and Liddy foil Maleficent’s evil plans? Will Cookie accept the help of celebrity cooks Mary Cherry and Paul Jollygood? Will Max and the Moshers finally get their big break and a chance to sing by royal appointment?

Of course, there’s only one way to find out, you’ll have to see the show.

Simon Forster from the group said:

“This is the fifth time that the Group has produced Sleeping Beauty and so it definitely falls under the header of Traditional Pantomime. However, whatever show we produce the Group means so much to everyone involved be they on stage cast, back stage crew, front of house or production team.

“It is not just about the fun, although there is plenty of that to be had, or even about the Charity Donations it is about ‘Keeping Pantomime in The Community’ – and at affordable prices too!”

For the first time this year the performance on Thursday 28 January will include a signer for people with impaired hearing.

“In 2103 we were awarded the Duke of York’s Award for contribution to the Local Community in recognition of the work we have done since our establishment in 1970” explains Simon

“One of the aspects of our Group that we have been working on over the past few years is outreach. We already contribute significant funds to Leeds based charities and in recent years the Group has established a Summer Children’s Theatre Group called Starlight, through which we have started to take our rehearsal performances out to allow children in places such as Hollybank Trust to experience some of our theatre first hand.

“I’m delighted that we have been able to put on a special performance during the run for the Hearing Impaired. This will be supported by a fully qualified BSL signer with a vast experience of signing in theatre environments.”

Tickets for the hearing impaired and their guests are at a special reduced price of £3.


  • Saturday 16 January at 2pm and 7pm
  • Sunday 17 January at 2pm
  • Wednesday January at 7pm
  • Friday 22 January at 7pm
  • Saturday 23 January at 2pm and 7pm
  • Sunday 24 January at 2pm
  • Tuesday 26 January at 7pm
  • Thursday 28 January at 7pm  ** Signed for the hearing impaired **
  • Friday 29 January at 7pm
  • Saturday 30 January at 2pm and 7pm

£5 Adults; £3 Children
Call: 07443 571868; Email: