In the very best traditions of pantomine the show must go on, despite almost the entire cast being trapped in their overnight accommodation by a fallen tree.
Most of the cast of Peter Pan at the Princes Theatre in Clacton were staying at a holiday park in St Osyth but the road back to Clacton was blocked by a fallen tree.
The star of the show television presenter Jeff Brazier, who plays Peter Pan, was unaffected because he was staying elsewhere.
He said that he was relieved that the problem was resolved as soon as possible as he would not have wanted to disappoint all those who had booked for Christmas Eve.
The cast made an emergency call to Tendring District Council in the early hours and a team was dispatched at first light to clear Beach Road at St Osyth.
The road was cleared in time for the first show at 11am. More than 1,000 people were due at the two performances on Christmas Eve.
– Jeff Brazier, Peter Pan
“Several of the cast do play multiple parts but I certainly couldn’t have played them all. I was glad to see the rest of the team arrive at the Princes in plenty of time. It was always going to be a hectic day as we only have a 15 minute turnaround between shows.”
Nigel Brown, from Tendring District Council, said that he had told the cast to keep in touch if there were any problems with the weather.
He said: "Rebecca, who plays Nicole the Pirate, sent me a text at around 1.30am to say that they were stuck.
“One car had tried to leave to go back to where they were staying inClacton and could not get past the tree. They were worried they would not be able to get out in time for the first show."
– Paul Honeywood, Interim leader Tendring Council
"Everyone pulls together in a crisis and there is a great team spirit at the Council. At the end of the day the shows had to go on and we made sure that no one missed out on seeing a really great pantomime."
Peter Pan runs at the Princes Theatre in Clacton until New Year's Day.