Comedy classic revived with serious slapstick

On parade: Dad's Army
On parade: Dad's Army
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Dad’s Army

Todmorden Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society

Hippodrome Theatre

TWO original members of Todmorden Home Guard were in the audience on the opening night and a collection was taken afterwards for the British Legion. But that was where serious matters ended.

Otherwise the evening was a delightful excursion to Walmington-on-Sea in 1940 in the company of characters we long ago took to our hearts: Captain Mainwaring, convincingly played by Tony Hiley, who even looked a bit like Arthur Lowe, and Sergeant Wilson, a perfect gentleman in the hands of Malcolm Haywood.

George Priestley as Private Pike brought a local touch to this part – well, the character could have preferred a Burnley scarf!

Early action involved Mainwaring’s intrepid team being called on to capture a U-boat crew, under the efficient Germanic leadership of Sean Kavanagh.

The motley crew was brought back to the church hall only to be involved in serious slapstick involving Pike and a wonky stepladder.

Misunderstandings, “wiffling” sticks and Sergeant Wilson on a pantomime horse brought us to a Floral Dance finale.

Costumes were atmospheric, the music invited community singing and the sets were to the usual Hippodrome high standard.

Roy Greenwood, as Chief Warden Hodges, kept us all in check. The show is staged tonight and tomorrow.

Sheila Tordoff