THE Scouts and Guides of Christchurch will present their Gang Show at the town's Regent Centre on Friday, February 21 and Saturday, February 22.

With a cast of 78 locals, the show will celebrate the Diamond Jubilee of the Christchurch Gang Show, in an extravaganza of songs, dance routines, sketches, skits, slapstick and stand-up comedy.

The performance will also include a selection of songs by the Gang Show's original producer, Ralph Reader, such as Strolling and On the Crest of a Wave. Other tunes will be performed from hit West End and Broadway shows, as well as musical film blockbusters, including The Greatest Showman and Mary Poppins.

Classic campfire skits and sketches will be guaranteed to raise a chuckle, as they take a look at all aspects of everyday life.

Mr Reader was the man behind the very first Gang Show in Great Britain, back in 1932. The theatrical performance, involving youth members of Scouts and Guides, is now a worldwide tradition, providing youngsters with stage experience, team building skills, the discipline of learning and rehearsing scripts, and the fun of entertaining others.

In 1966, Mr Reader presented the Christchurch Scouts and Guides with their special Gang Show Red Scarf, when he attended a performance of theirs in Pontins Ballroom. The scarf continues to be worn with pride.

The Christchurch Scout and Guide Gang Show is one of the longest-running in the country, having begun life in April 1960 at the Priory Church Hall. The group moved to the Old Town Hall in 1963 before taking up residence at the Regent in 1998.

It is now the only remaining Gang Show in Dorset and one of only 125 still being produced in the UK. Taking place every two years, 2020 will see the 41st performance from the Christchurch-based group.

*Gang Show from the scouts and guides of Christchurch, Regent Centre, Friday, February 21 and Saturday, February 22, 7.30pm, plus a Saturday matinee at 2.15pm. Tickets are £12 for adults and £7.50 for children, available from the Regent Centre website or box office.