Sitcom star announced to replace Lynda Bellingham

Sheila Reid, playing Fairy Bowbells in White Rock Theatre pantomime Dick Whittington.
Sheila Reid, playing Fairy Bowbells in White Rock Theatre pantomime Dick Whittington.

TELEVISION star Sheila Reid, best known to viewers as ‘Madge’ in the ITV sitcom Benidorm, is to play the role of Fairy Bowbells in the White Rock Theatre’s pantomime, Dick Whittington.

It was announced this week that Sheila is to replace Lynda Bellingham in the leading role, after Lynda pulled out of several of her acting commitments following a cancer diagnosis.

Sheila, who will be making her pantomime debut in Dick Whittington, has enjoyed a long career in theatre, television and film.

As well as her role in Benidorm, Sheila’s many television credits include Call the Midwife, Dr Who, Doctors, Casualty, Midsomer Murders, Where the Heart Is, and Monarch of the Glen.

She has appeared on stage in productions including When I Was A Girl I Used To Scream and Shout, Martin Guerre, The Importance of Being Earnest and many productions with the National Theatre and RSC.

Howard Barnes, theatre director said: “We are delighted to have Sheila lead the cast in this year’s pantomime.

“Sheila is a wonderfully-talented actress and singer, and we are thrilled that she has chosen the White Rock Theatre to make her pantomime debut.”

Sheila is joined by a cast that includes Brian Godfrey as Sarah the Cook, Tommy Jones as the superstar all-singing cat, Mark Pearce as King Rat, and Ben Watson as Simple Simon.

Dick Whittington runs at Hastings White Rock Theatre from Friday, December 13 to Saturday, January 4 2014. Tickets can be booked online at whiterocktheatre.co.uk or by calling 01424 462288.