WE all have our own individual ways of counting down to Christmas.

Mine first starts when I see the Coca Cola advert on TV, continues with the culmination of I’m A Celebrity and then completely intensifies by seeing a pantomime.

The last of those traditions has been rekindled in recent years since becoming an uncle and now forms a big part of my family’s festivities.

As such, I was excited to watch Peter Pan at the Cliffs Pavilion and went in to it with high expectations.

Sometimes when you set the expectation level so high what follows can often be anti climatic.

But I need not have worried here as what transpired was an uplifting, high tempo, feel-good show full of fun, laughter and entertainment.

Joe Pasquale leads the way as Smee and produces a performance that is everything a pantomime should be.

It’s a laugh a second with him on stage as a wide range of jokes – some for children and some definitely for adults – are continually delivered at rapid speed.

His comedic background also means he is able to adlib and adjust when things may not completely go to plan.

And he can also interact with the audience superbly.

Echo: High tempo - the cast make for an uplifting showHigh tempo - the cast make for an uplifting show (Image: RYAN DINHAM)

Alongside the cheeky Smee, Rob Rinder is exceptional as Captain Hook.

He is far more used to judging others than me of course but he was brilliant as was proved by the perfect mix of jeers and cheers throughout the show.

He boasts a fine singing voice and was actually so good I will even forgive him for telling a joke at the expense of Southend United!

But it is also important to highlight other members of the cast.

David Robbins as Mrs Smee probably made me laugh more than anyone else on the night, with the variation of costumes particularly impressive and entertaining.

Michelle Francis as Wendy Darling and Ciara Ford as Tinker Bell are also impressive, as too is Morgan Jackson as Peter Pan.

The energy of the show is something else that makes it special and means it is impossible to lose focus or interest at any point.

Teddy Marsh and Parker Pearson were just perfect as the Darling Boys while a special mention goes to Federico Bianchetti, Ellie Messenger, Lewis Mitchell, Hetty Moss, Callum Quinnen and Bonnie Wiles for their flexibility and energy throughout the show too.

It is a production of Peter Pan which will fittingly never get old and provides fun for all the family.

You will leave the theatre feeling better than when you entered and for me that says everything about this pantomime which is well worth going to see.