TWENTY four ladies from the Salisbury area trod the boards this month, some for the first time ever, as they took part in the Salisbury Playhouse production of The Ladykillers.

The ladies, some of whom came from as far away as Pewsey, Andover and Warminster, responded to an advert in the Salisbury Journal asking for a group of “elderly ladies” to play the part of a group of women attending a concert given by four “musicians” who were in fact bank robbers.

For most of them, this was a completely new experience. Pam Stoggen from Salisbury said: “I’ve never done anything like this before and I really enjoyed it.

After a selection workshop, each member was allocated between nine and 14 performances during the three week run. Costumes in 1950s style were provided, complete with elegant hats, and the archive room in the Playhouse became their dressing room for the duration.

“It’s a unique opportunity in my old age,” said Sylvie Aitken-Sykes from Salisbury.

And Lynne Sekree, who drove in from Andover for each show, agreed, saying: “I’ve really enjoyed being part of this wonderful production.”

Sheelagh Wurr, who travelled in from Warminster by train each day, said, “Working with professional actors was a great experience. They were very kind to us and really patient when we were a bit slow to move on and off the stage.”

The Ladykillers runs in the Main House at Salisbury Playhouse until Saturday. For tickets call 01722 320 333 or go to