Theatre by the Lake welcomes back regulars Sandra Hunt and Rachel Laurence, better known by their surnames, as they première Mapp & Lucia Ahoy! - a brand new adaption of the novels of E.F. Benson in the Studio Theatre. Directed by Richard Stone, the comic misadventures of the arch rivals Emmeline ‘Lucia’ Lucas and Elizabeth Mapp will be shown from Monday 6 until Wednesday 8 June at 8pm with a 2pm matinée on Wednesday 8 June.

E.F. Benson, an English author who wrote over a hundred books from ghost stories to plays and biographies, is best remembered for his Mapp & Lucia comedies written between 1920 and 1939. The stories are a battle between the strong-minded women for social status and have proved timeless with adaptions appearing again and again in different forms; from television in the 80s to radio in the last few years and now, Rachel Laurence, known for her writing as well as acting skills, has brought Mapp, Lucia and friends to glorious life on stage.

Whether swept out to sea on a kitchen table, dabbling in the paranormal or re-enacting the defeat of the Spanish Armada, the eccentric residents of Tilling by the Sea are guaranteed to shiver your timbers and warm your cockles. The productionis sedcribed as 'an exuberant celebration of the very English art of one-up(wo)manship.'
 
Hunt & Laurence have been performing sell-out shows regularly at Theatre by the Lake and their adaptation of The Ladies of Cranford was such a hit that they were invited back to perform Alan Bennett’s Talking Heads, their world premières of Lady Molly of Scotland Yard and their two one-woman plays - Sandra’s Fast Woman and Rachel’s The Key to the Garden.

On their forthcoming return visit, Sandra and Rachel said: “It is always a delight to play at the Theatre by the Lake – the staff, the audiences and the people of the town are so welcoming that it feels like coming home.”