This year brings the panto back to the Wyvern theatre after Christmas crowds missed the traditional festive show last year because of the pandemic.

And the cast of Jack and The Beanstalk could not be more thrilled to be heralding the return of family friendly entertainment to the Swindon stage.

Meeting for the first time at Swindon's newest venue Boom Battle Bar for a press event several of the cast hit it off posing in front of a giant inflatable bean stalk.

The general feeling among the cast members was excitement for being able to perform in front of an audience again as it'll be the first time for all of them in eighteen months.

This Is Wiltshire: Louie Spence after nailing an axe throwLouie Spence after nailing an axe throw

Rebecca Jardine who is playing Jill graduated in 2020 and hasn't been able to perform on a stage since, so this will be her first panto.

"I just graduated in 2020 during the pandemic so it's quite nice to come back and be on a stage, it's really lovely to get back to it.

"Yeah, it's my first panto, I'm really excited, it's a long time since I've been on a stage since the whole pandemic so I'm really excited to get back on a stage and do what I love"

Zack Guest, Jill's love interest and star of the show Jack, also graduated in 2020

"Me and Rebecca actually graduated in the same year, different schools, but it's my first panto playing a character, I've been in the ensemble before, but now I'm very fortunate to be able to speak and sing, but it's my first real professional panto I'd probably say.

The Spirit of the Beans himself Louie Spence, now a panto regular in the UK, said he quite enjoyed the opportunity to spend time with his family that the pandemic brought, but can't wait to get back on the stage again,

"The time's right now to get back, have fun, especially with panto. I'm very excited to do this. I've done a few other little things, but only small things, so this is my first proper show since lockdown. It's always fun, panto is always fun."

Matt Rixon is a panto regular and his role as Dame Trot will be his 18th panto appearance

"We've all had a weird two years, the last theatre job I did was panto here two years ago, so I'm really excited to be back. I'm thrilled the Wyvern is reopen. I'm hoping that we'll all be up for it, and the audiences will be up for it.

"We deserve a good Christmas."

The choice of venue was more than apt as attendees were treated to the sight of all four cast members in full costume having a go at axe throwing, which they'll need if they want to chop that beanstalk down.