Last week I recorded two radio interviews on the same day and  both were about pantomimes! 

I got to interview  Strictly judge Anton Du Beke on Zoom. He has a joy to chat to and kindly answered questions I had collected from partners at the Sunnybank Trust. 

Anton was talking about being in the panto at Woking’s New Victoria Theatre this Christmas. 

He told me he is no stranger to Woking and is glad that he is in panto local to his home so he can spend time with his family over Christmas.

You can hear the conversation  on Sunny Sessions on Surrey Hills Radio and Radio Woking in the next few weeks. 

After my 15 minutes with Anton I walked up to the Link Able centre in Woking where I met Rachel who runs the drama group Link Actables. I also met Emily who attends the drama sessions.

Link Able is a charity working with the Learning disability community locally supporting them with many things with the aim of  help them become valued in their community and lead a fulfilling life.

The Link Actables drama group will be putting on their annual panto on Sunday (December 3), Cinderella, at the Buzz Theatre in Woking. There are two performances at 2.30pm and 5pm and tickets start at £5. You can get more info and buy tickets at

It was really interesting chatting to Emily and hearing how she has learnt so much through being part of the drama group. She told me She has  learnt about improvisation and it has helped her confidence, skills that are transferable to other areas of her life.  

You can hear my interview with Rachel and Emily on the Sunny Sessions at 11am today (Thursday) on Surrey Hills Community Radio.

All this talk of panto took me back to when I was on stage once in a very small part in Robin Hood at the Cecil Hepworth Playhouse in Walton-on-Thames. This was  many years ago  compete with make up and everything!

Theatre is important  and as  Anton said to me if we don’t use it we will loose it. In Woking we have brilliant so-called amateur theatre groups and groups like Link Actables who really benefit from the community theatre spaces we have locally.

We then have the amazing West End productions that come through our town gracing our stage at the New Victoria Theatre.

On a cold winters night, a trip to the theatre can really lift your spirits and take you away from the rubbish weather and doom and gloom of  life.   

There is something for everyone and I think this is brilliant to have all these facilities in Woking to entertain us and to nurture the next generations of acting talent.

Listen to the Sunny Sessions, the inclusive radio show from The Sunnybank Trust on Surrey Hills Community Radio Mon and Thurs 11am and on the first Monday of each month at 9pm.

Sunny Sessions is also on Radio Woking every Wednesday at 9am.

My Radio Woking shows are Wednesday breakfast 7am to 9am and Sunday mornings 9am to midday. 

If you want to take part in my radio shows you can reach me on email at [email protected]

By Jon Andrews