Steven is jetting in for Customs House panto - oh yes he is!

Steven Lee Hamilton as the Brave and Bold Sir John (centre) with David John Hopper as Arbuthnot (left) and Ray Spencer as Dame Bella Ballcock (right).
Steven Lee Hamilton as the Brave and Bold Sir John (centre) with David John Hopper as Arbuthnot (left) and Ray Spencer as Dame Bella Ballcock (right).

Steven Lee Hamilton is flying in to save the day in this year’s Customs House panto - oh, yes he is!

The 34-year-old flight attendant will star as The Brave and Bold Sir John in this year’s production of The Lambton Worm.

I saw The Lambton Worm the first time The Customs House did it as a panto when I was very young and I loved it.

Steven Lee Hamilton

The Customs House panto stalwart first appeared in Sleeping Beauty at The Customs House at the age of 19 and recently played the Wolf in Little Red Riding Hood, The Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland and Fleshcreep in Jack and the Beanstalk.

“I have enjoyed three years of character and villain parts, but it is nice to be going back to playing the prince,” he said.

“It is what I have always done.

“I think it is a harder job though, because you are the most real character on stage. It is really hard to compete with a villain or a dame.”

The Lambton Worm panto has been written by Ray Spencer and Graeme Thompson in celebration of the 150th anniversary of the North East folk song, The Lambton Worm, which was written in 1867.

The song tells the story of John Lambton, heir to the Lambton Estate in County Durham, who returns home from the Crusades to do battle with a giant worm that has been terrorising the local villages in his absence.

Like all myths, details of the story change with each telling and The Customs House will be putting its own unique spin on the tale between Tuesday, November 28, and Saturday, January 6, next year.

Steven said: “I saw The Lambton Worm the first time The Customs House did it as a panto when I was very young and I loved it.

“I know the song and I know the story and I live in the area in which it is set, so I’m very aware of its history.

“I think it is good to be doing something different, rather than the usual panto stories. The Lambton Worm is like a fairytale, but some of the characters are actually real, historical people.

“I’m really looking forward to it.”

Panto season comes at a perfect time for Steven, who is a cabin crew member at Jet2.

The holiday season finished in October and he returns to work at the end of January.

The Lambton Worm, sponsored by Hays Travel, sees the return of Ray Spencer as Dame Bella Ballcock and David John Hopper as her hapless son, Arbuthnot and also stars Eleanor Chaganis as the Princess, Natasha Haws as Susie Soothsayer from Southwick, Georgia Nicholson as Poison Pen from Penshaw, Gareth Hunter as The Sultan, Cal Halbert as Lord Larry Lambton and Lewis Jobson as Puddles the Dog.

Tickets, priced from £9.99, are available from the box office on 454 1234 or online at www.customshouse.co.uk. Times vary.