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The panto gang are back in town

Rehearsals begin for Corn Exchange's Jack & The Beanstalk

Trish Lee

Trish Lee


01635 886663


The festive season is officially upon us as rehearsals have just begun for this year’s Corn Exchange pantomime Jack and the Beanstalk - opening on Friday, November 30.

N2 spotted some familiar faces arriving for a read-through yesterday, including Matthew Grace, who plays Newbury favourite Billy Bumpkin, and Joshua Coley - nominated for Best Double Act at last year’s Great British Pantomime Awards - as Pickle Onion. Joining them are Emma Fraser, who made her debut appearance here last year, as Fairy Alfalfa, and Danny Stokes, who returns for his third Corn Exchange pantomime, playing the villain Sir Dastardly.

Making their Corn Exchange debuts are Harry Downes as Jack, Hannah Ponting as Jill the Giant Tamer and experienced pantomime dame Eamonn Fleming as Dame Betty Bumpkin. Completing the cast are Lauren Anderson-Oakley, Danny Chesworth, Eva Ross-Davie and Mikulas Urbanek. 

Written and directed by Corn Exchange favourite Phil Willmott, Jack and the Beanstalk is packed with catchy songs, high-energy dance routines, comic thrills and outrageous silliness.

Will the gang save Newbury Bottom from the giant?  Will they rid the village of the evil Sir Dastardly?  Will they be reunited with their beloved cow?

As the cast prepares for the opening night on Friday 30 November, tickets are selling fast and are limited for some shows. Jack and the Beanstalk runs to Sunday, January 6. Ticket prices and booking details online, visit

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