AGATHA Christie's most popular novel and stage play And Then There Were None was performed at Christchurch's Regent Centre on Friday.

On a hot August day in 1939, eight disparate people arrive on a small deserted desolate island off the Devon coast...

And so begins another compelling Christie murder mystery, forensically plotted, rich in period detail, hugely entertaining - and featuring ten different murders!

The Regent Rep – the Regent Centre’s acclaimed 'in-house' company – has created an atmospheric stage set with convincing costumes, furniture and social attitudes.

Particularly successful is the creepy lighting and music, the summer storm thunder and lightning effects, and the final scene’s dark and claustrophobic atmosphere.

If the pace occasionally slows and the play seems overly-wordy, Christie, creator of The Mousetrap, Murder On The Orient Express, and A Murder Is Announced, continues to baffle, intrigue, and entertain.

Interestingly, for a woman whose first novel was not published until she was 36, Agatha Christie wrote more than 80 crime novels and short story collections, entertaining the world with million-selling books and long-running stage plays.

Brendan McCusker