The Hound of the Baskervilles promise a spectacular finale as darkness falls at Lytham Hall

Some of the cast of Illyrias Hound Of The Baskervilles
Some of the cast of Illyrias Hound Of The Baskervilles

A spectacular finale as darkness falls is promised as Illyria brings its open air production of The Hound of the Baskervilles to Lytham Hall on Saturday.

Their take on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s spine-chilling murder mystery has been a major hit throughout the country in a tour which visits 33 venues in just 35 days.

Company manager Lee Peck who plays naturalist Jack Stapleton and multiple other roles in traditional open air theatre style believes that the popularity of Sherlock Holmes stories is universal.

“We played to 500 at Castle Drogo on the edge of Dartmoor where the play is set and are looking forward to a similarly sizeable and appreciative audience at Lytham Hall,” he said.

Lee and fellow cast member Nick Taylor both won praise for their performances in the eye-catching production of The Lost World at Lytham Hall last July and theatre organiser Julian Wilde believes that Illyria’s artistic director Oliver Gray will have another surprise up his sleeve to shock the audience.

“Oliver has the reputation for producing a sudden stunning effect which makes the audience gasp and I am looking forward to seeing Illyria produce another rabbit from their theatrical hat,” Julian added.

Assistant organiser at Lytham Hall Julia Munro, 19, is advising the audience to think carefully about their clothing for the performance which starts in daylight and ends in the dark.

“I know many people will be with us, hopefully in the sunshine, at 5.30 pm for picnics and I suggest a rug for later on and a small torch would be useful, as the play will not end till 10pm,” she said.

The double header weekend is a first for Lytham’s Outdoor Theatre season, with The Pirates Of Penzance being staged on Sunday, both coinciding with the 1940s weekend in the town.

The season closes with Dr Dolittle on Sunday, August 26.

The opening two shows of the season, Little Women and The Merchant Of Venice drew record attendance levels at the hall.

Visit www.lythamhall.org.uk or call the hall on 01253 736652 for tickets.