Those who found following the complicated plot of Gilbert and Sullivan’s Yeomen of the Guard difficult were recommended to go to see Barrow Savoyards’ production in February 1993.

The Mail’s reviewer said that the twists and turns were clearly laid out before the audience so there was no confusion as the story unfolded about who was whose son, whose sister, who was dead and who wasn’t.

Superb performances by Eileen Lithgow and Linda Marshall as Elsie Maynard and Phoebe Meryll gave the show all the drama and pathos it needed.

Eileen’s first entrance as a strolling player was a delight and she was sincere and moving as the pretty young Elsie, said the reviewer.

Linda, too, portrayed love and loss in a touching, unaffected manner, while her comedy scenes with Russell Palmer as Wilfred Shadbolt were the highlights of the night.

Russell, inevitably stole the show, said the reviewer. Looking like a giant out of a fairy story book, he shambled along like a great brown bear, creating a wonderful character that audiences were guaranteed to love.

Bill Springthorpe injected a natural charm as Sergeant Meryll and John Brice was in fine voice as Colonel Fairfax.

The reviewer concluded: “Lots of lovely music sung and played to the Savoyards’ usual standard and gorgeous costumes ensure plenty to savour on a cold February night.”

In February 1989, Barrow Savoyards’ production of Patience at the Civic Hall featured unrequited love, dandies devoted to poetry, a milkmaid and a company of dragoon guards.

The production was directed by David Marcus, who brought out every ounce of humour in the script.

David also filled the role of the poet Bunthorne. His character fell in love with Patience (Eileen Lithgow) but found a rival for her affections in the form of Grosvenor, played by Neil Metcalfe.