Surprise Standish Christmas Market pantomime delights virtual crowd

A surprise pantomime delighted a virtual crowd despite the pandemic’s having originally putting a stop to it.
Tom Binns’Tom Binns’
Tom Binns’

And it was further enhanced by cameo appearances from two familiar faces from the telly.

Tom Binns’s comedy show, Buttons - The One-Man Panto, was due to be staged in Standish at its social club - until Covid-19 meant it had to be cancelled, with all ticket money returned to paying customers.

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But Standish Christmas Market, who organised it, decided that the show must go on and asked Standish comedian Jamie Sutherland, who was staging the show for comedian Tom, if they could hold it digitally.

Sian Gibson with Peter Kay in Car ShareSian Gibson with Peter Kay in Car Share
Sian Gibson with Peter Kay in Car Share

He inquired and Standish Voice – which runs the annual market – paid Tom to film his show from his garage - which was shown during their entertainment coverage last Saturday.

There were cameo performances from comedians Sian Gibson, of Peter Kay’s Car Share and Death on the Tyne fame, and Crackerjack and panto legend Bernie Clifton during the 40-minute family show.

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The show was compered by stand-up Jamie.

Standish Voice vice-chairman Paul Ogden said that the virtual show somewhat made up for the sad anti-climax of not being able to stage the usually very popular market in 2020.

He said: “It was disappointing not to be able to stage the market this year but the next best thing was doing it digitally.

“It was great that the Buttons performance was shown in Standish as many people were disappointed when it had to be cancelled.

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“Thanks to Jamie for organising it and being the compere on the day.

“The virtual market brought a bit of early festive cheer to Standish and thanks to everyone who organised it and took part.”

At the market there were also videoed performances from children from St Wilfrid’s and Wood Fold School Primary Schools, the Susan Hayes Music School, singers Neil Dunlop and Liv Forshaw and the bands Decree and Clouded Minds.

There were virtual stalls and a Christmas Clobber competition where the winner of a photo competition wearing Christmas clothing got a £50 Olive Garden Voucher. It is hoped a “live” market will be able to return next Christmas.

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To watch the show, visit

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