AN award-winning theatrical group is putting on its first show for two years.

Bocking Theatre Club is staging Dick Whittington as they return to pantomime after a wait.

Rehearsals began virtually on Zoom, with many cast members battling wi-fi problems.

That all changed when Covid restrictions were lifted.

Bocking Theatre Club's Amy Edwards said: “Everyone is really excited to be back.

“Zoom and online work was really tricky at times, so it is lovely to get back on stage properly.

“We managed to squeeze our last performance of Merlin back in February 2020 just before the lockdown, so it is almost two years exactly since our last on-stage show.

“The sets are just about built, the cast are ready, all we need now is an audience.”

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The show, directed by Margaret Surrey, has a cast aged from five up to 75.

Amy said: “Having a range of ages like this is great and makes for a really fun environment for everyone, so we have the little ones playing the rats and then teens playing some of the main characters.”

“It’s a fun-filled panto with all of your favourites – custard pies, songs guaranteed to make you sing along, a dame with larger than life hair and our plucky young hero ready to take on King Rat.”

The show runs from February 16-19, including two extra matinee performances for younger audiences.

The pantomime is at Bocking Village Hall, with tickets available at or by calling 01376 320948.

Tickets are also available at New Image, Church Street, Bocking, and Eatons Tea and Coffee House in George Yard, Braintree.

Bocking Theatre Club is also waiting to see if they will pick up a third prestigious award.

The group has twice won best pantomime in the region by the National Operatic and Dramatic Association, and is looking for a third for Merlin which was put on in 2020.