THERE’S a moment in this production when a man, played by a woman, sings a lullaby to a rasher of bacon in a lodging house run by a woman played by a man in drag. It makes Monty Python look normal.

I should also mention that another man, also played by a woman, lives in the same room although the two lodgers never meet because one works days and the other nights. For landlady Mrs Bouncer (Paul Ryan in a hilarious pantomime dame turn) that means double rent for one room.

Sir Arthur Sullivan’s pre- Gilbert partnership operetta Cox & Box is nothing if not complicated and director Chris Monks makes it even more complex with his gender- bending casting.

Monks and musical director Richard Atkinson have written a sequel – set 150 years later in 2016 when the rise of a political party called UZIP has led to all foreigners being sent back to their own country.

The room is now occupied by identical, but illegal Polish twins (Charlotte Harwood and Lara Stubbs), although landlord and UZIP supporter Bob Narks (Ryan again) thinks there’s only one person living there.

The surreal farce of the first piece is replaced by knockabout satire in the second involving caricatured Yorkshiremen, bigots, boxing and chickens.

No bacon song this time, but a tremendous little ditty, a Yorkshire anthem, that Visit Yorkshire might like to borrow sometime.

It’s all tremendous fun in a jolly seaside postcard-withmusic sort of way.

  • To August 30. Box Office: 01723-370541 and com

Steve Pratt