Think Traditional Pantomime and it is unlikely that Peter Pan is the first option that springs to mind.

In a world of Dick Whittingtons, Aladdins and Snow Whites, the story of the boy who never grew up is a path less travelled.

That isn’t to say that the latest production at the Theatre Royal doesn’t have all the hallmarks of a full-fat festive farce, however. Shiny protagonist, comedic sidekick, a gag-a-minute script, all of the bells and whistles are in full force.

Save for the Dame of course. Breaking with the norm, this year there is no bewigged bloke, not that it matters. Panto-regular Jon Monie is back as Smee, and firing on all cylinders, the real engine of the evening. Showing off perfect comic timing and enough vocal range when it was called for, his solo performance riffing off The Greatest Showman (“This is Smee”) got the biggest cheers of the evening.

Special mention too must be given to Paul Nicholas as Captain Hook, snarling and hamming up throughout, and Rachel Grundy as a feisty scene-stealing Tinkerbell.

Not that the production was confined to a handful of performances, for it features an all-singing, all-dancing troupe. From the very game set of Lost Boys, to the swirling dancers and highly acrobatic pirates, no expense has been spared in setting up something special.

With verve and vivacity in abundance this is a treat for kids aged nine through 99 and is another fine entry into the panto pantheon. Roll on 2019! - Marion Sauvebois