There were golden eggs everywhere as the Selborne Players performed the pantomime Mother Goose.

Mother Goose lived in a small cottage with her son Jack. They were poor and had to work hard to make a living, but Jack was an idle lad. His mother despaired of him and worried about his future.

As the curtains opened to reveal a colourful backdrop of rural scenery, Mother Goose appeared in a fabulous dress of red and green but was a bit concerned Jack was more interested in collecting frogs than meeting local girls.

Girls, in Jack’s opinion, didn’t know one end of a slow worm from the other, so his mum decided to give him some responsibility and sent him to market with all their savings, £100, to buy some livestock for the farm. “And some frogs?” he asked hopefully. 

“No frogs!” yelled Mother Goose, and off Jack went.

He found it difficult to concentrate on the task in hand. He was not so much buying lambs as counting sheep. He was tempted to buy turtles, a unicorn, rabbits or pigs. He met a girl, Maisie, but was intercepted by Bugsy B, whose favourite way to get people to part with money was to tickle their feet so they paid him to stop.

Children danced to the song An English Country Garden before a chase began to the soundtrack of Robbers and Thieves. There was a switcheroo to be settled, it was all about money, money, money and Bugsy B gave it his all singing about how misunderstood he was.

The Squire mesmerised the audience with his shenanigans, Maisie went out with Jack, the Squire appeared again, a right know-it-all, budgies went “cheep” and Maisie introduced the magnificent giant goose on a giant tether. The Old Lady was wise and mysterious.

The interval was a very sociable time when junior members of the audience had a chance to chat, do press-ups and discuss the morning’s colts football match.

After that there was a riot of singing and dancing to Taylor Swift’s Shake It Off and Let It Go from Frozen, cleverly choreographed and very well danced. And Mother Goose sang Gilly Gilly Ossenfeffer Katzenellen Bogen by the Sea, getting the audience to join in and leaving us with an extra tune to hum.

Cast: Nicholas James (Mother Goose), Simone Knoll (Jack), Simon Collis (Goose), Emily Carter (Maisie), Steve Scott (Bugsy B), Aphra Collis (Blewitt), Scarlett Bainton (Botchit), Elsa Donovan (Old Woman), Sean Quinn (Squire), Emily Bourne, Juno Collis, Mia Bradshaw, Grace Bradshaw, Shach Quinn (market traders), Jan Earney (narrator).