Student hits the Agatha Christie half million mark

20:45 08 May 2014

Victoria Bishop is presented with her show ticket and programme on the stage set of The Mousetrap by cast members Chris Gilling and Anne Kavanagh.

Victoria Bishop is presented with her show ticket and programme on the stage set of The Mousetrap by cast members Chris Gilling and Anne Kavanagh.


Drama student becomes the 500,000th person to see the Diamond Jubilee tour of The Mousetrap when it arrives in Barnstaple.

A drama student won a theatrical treat when she became the 500,000 member of the audience as Agatha Christie’s enduring whodunit The Mousetrap arrived in Barnstaple.

Victoria Bishop, 20, won a prime seat for the show at the Queen’s Theatre, a signed programme and a rare opportunity to meet the cast backstage after going along to enjoy the matinee showing today (Thursday).

For more than 50 years, Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap has played in the West End and become been the world’s longest running stage production.

This, its Diamond Anniversary, tour is the first time it has gone on the road, opening in September 2012.

The Barnstaple run continues until Saturday, with shows tomorrow (Friday) at 7.45pm and two on Saturday, at 2.30 and 7.45pm.

Victoria, who is studying drama at Exeter University, was delighted and more than a little surprised to learn she was the 500,000th to see the current tour.

“I’ve never seen a show like this before, so that was great, but I’ve also never met anyone who has been a professional actor, so it was fantastic to meet them and especially on such an elaborate set,” she said.

The scene is set when a group of people at a country house cut off by snow discover to their horror there is a murderer in their midst…

One by one the suspicious characters reveal their sordid pasts until at the last, nerve-shredding moment the identity and the motive are finally revealed.

In her own inimitable style, Dame Agatha Christie has created an atmosphere of shuddering suspense and a brilliantly intricate plot where murder lurks around every corner.

The play has a particularly twisting ending, and a tradition where the audience is asked not to reveal the identity of the murderer when they leave the theatre.

Anne Kavanagh, who plays Mrs Boyle, was with the show for 10 months in the West End, with a further seven on tour.

“We have had a great week here in Barnstaple,” she said.

“We are getting used to playing full houses, which I think demonstrates how people love Agatha Christie and that cosy English murder genre.”

Chris Gilling, who plays Major Metcalfe, added: “This is really the genesis of a lot of modern murder mysteries – people love it because they are familiar with Poirot and Miss Marple, and the play has humour as well as murder, mystery and suspense, so it is very good family entertainment and a good period piece.”

* Tickets to see The Mousetrap at the Queen’s Theatre are available from the box office on 01271 324242 or visit


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other North Devon Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by North Devon Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique North Devon Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Other Entertainment Stories

Thu, 09:00
Why not Mad Max your 'wheels' and join the Rolle Road Rally?

Soup up your wacky transport and join the big parade on Saturday, October 10 at Taddiport

Read more
Wed, 16:59
Combe Martin Wildlife & Dinosaur Park.

North Devonians can get in to the attraction for £5 on Saturday and Sunday, October 10-11.

Read more
Wed, 15:20
Father & Son by Carole Evans,

New international showcase of artists Project AfterBirth arrives in North Devon

Read more
Wed, 14:38
Join Tree Fu Tom and friends in Ilfracombe on Saturday, October 17.

Tree Fu Tom at the Landmark Theatre on Saturday, October 17

Read more
Thursday, September 24, 2015
Devon Youth Orchestra is recruiting for the new season

Young musicians invited to join popular orchestra

Read more
Wednesday, September 23, 2015
Lee Mead is at the Queen's Theatre in Barnstaple on Sunday, October 4.

Casualty star presents Some Enchanted Evening with musical film and theatre songs from the 1940s and 50s

Read more
Wednesday, September 23, 2015
Join Ryan. Downes at Shammick Acoustic in Combe Martin on Saturday.

Join two of England’s best folk performers on Saturday, September 26 in Combe Martin

Read more
Wednesday, September 23, 2015

North Devon events from 24/09/15 to 29/09/15

Read more
Wednesday, September 23, 2015
Pat St Clement

Dom Joly, Pam St Clement, Vince Cable, Elkie Brookes, Nicholas Parsons and Satish Kumar are among famous speakers who will be talking at Appledore Book Festival.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 16°C

min temp: 13°C

Most Read Entertainment

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Search for a job in Devon

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications