Britain was bleak in these austere days and the end of all food rationing was still a year away. Stratford was a smokey, dirty place, full of railway and industry, much of which poisoned the air with unpleasant smells. British theatre, and the drama it supported was staid and conservative.
If you haven't already worked it out, i'm a bit of a scrooge. I don't do Christmas fever. I don't do standing around warming my cold hands on cups of mulled wine. And I certainly don't do stupid bloody Santa hats. So you can imagine my horror at being threatened with a pantomime?