IT'S a quadruple celebrity cast in the Cliff's big panto this year, with Lee Mead, Stacey Solomon, Bobby Davro and Robin Askwith playing the starring roles in Jack and the Beanstalk.

You can see them on stage for yourself at the theatre in Station Road, Southend, from Saturday December 16 until Sunday January 7.

Is it an 'oh yes I have' or 'oh no I haven't' as to whether you've already got your tickets?

They are on sale now via from £20.50 with family saver discounts.

Kelly Buckley chats to musical theatre and TV star Lee Mead who will be playing Jack

Can you please tell us a brief bit about your role in Jack and the Beanstalk?

I’m playing Jack Trot, the hero of the panto who lives with his brother Silly Billy, his mum Dame Trot and their family cow, Daisy. We’re very poor and I’m very in love with the Princess who gets stolen by the giant and taken away up into the clouds where he lives. Luckily I’m not very clever so I sell Daisy for a bag of beans which grow a beanstalk, and the rest you’ll have to find out by coming to see the panto!

What are your co-stars like?

The cast we have at the Cliffs are brilliant, a really lovely bunch of people and very funny. I’ve known Bobby Davro for years and he’s a good friend so we’ll have a lot of fun playing brothers, Stacey is brilliant and has the most amazing voice and to work with a legend like Robin Askwith is going to be great fun.

What do you most like about being in panto?

This is my sixth panto now, it’s something that has quickly become part of my Christmas every year and I really look forward to it. Its hard work and we don’t have long to get the show up and running, but it’s amazing how hard everyone works to get the show ready in time and every audience is different so it keeps us on our toes. I remember seeing the panto at the Cliffs when I was a kid, so to be there in the show this year is really exciting.

How will you be spending Christmas day this year?

As a local I’m really lucky that I don’t have far to travel home for Christmas Day so I’ll get to spend time with my family and my daughter Betsy, we’ll have lunch, watch telly then head out for a walk together.

What’s best, giving or receiving gifts?

Obviously it’s nice to receive gifts, but I absolutely love thinking about what to get my daughter and seeing the look on her face when she unwraps it. I’d tell you what I’m getting her this year but she’s seven now and may well read this!

Who’s the most famous person you’ve received a Christmas card, message or gift from?

Probably Andrew Lloyd Webber! When I did Joseph in the West End we got very spoiled with gifts and to have one from a Lord was really cool.

Who will be cooking Christmas dinner and if it’s you, what’s your speciality?

I don’t think we’ve agreed on who is doing the cooking yet, but I’m hoping my busy panto schedule will mean I don’t have to. I’ll help with the washing up afterwards though.

You’re local lad anyway. Will you be able to get out much and see the town in its Christmassy glory this year, and if so, is there anywhere you plan to visit?

I’m hoping so. Being a local I’m really lucky to spend time here whenever I’m not away filming so it’s a really nice opportunity to stay home and be close to my loved ones. It depends on the show schedule but I’ll obviously need to do my Christmas shopping at some point so I’ll be around.