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15th July 2006: Hello everyone,

And welcome to a, so far, glorious Summer

May I extend a thousand apologies for such a late missive. A lot of which can be attributed to the recent passing of my beloved dad. I'm sure those of you who have experienced the same situation will understand perfectly the tide of emotions one feels. Added to that the huge practicalities involved. The paperwork! Help! My sister, Jeannie, has been an absolute star in that department, whilst I've been involved in clearing wardrobes, etc; organising relatives, and generally helping to run a smooth ship.

Now that dad has had his official "send off", things will no doubt gel into their usual places.

I would like to thank everyone for being so kind and supportive during this time. It is so much appreciated.

My dad left me a marvellous legacy of positiveness. His stock phrase was "get on with it...", so I'm doing just that.

Thanx for everything, dad.

Well, I think it's catch-up time now! Where to start! I guess it's as far back as panto in Rhyl. I had a really luvly season there, made all the more enjoyable because I stayed in a marvellous place - The Pier Hotel, run by two great guys; Richard and Wayne. They really looked after us, as most of the cast were there.

Apart from the early morning performances, breakfast was sometimes as late as Midday. What luxury is that! The whole aspect of the Pier was a joy, especially the social side! Let's just say there was many a jovial early morning tipple!

We really had a lot of fun, and a cast who all joined in with each other. A highlight was a girl and guys night, where the genders were swapped. Can't tell you how gorge some of the fellers looked. It's amazing what a bit of imagination and a few bits of lippy can do! The guys all agreed, tho, that high heels were not good for the balance.

Thanx to everyone involved in that luvly season.

No sooner had I arrived back home, the next I embarked on another theatrical adventure...

My first foray into Shakespeare. It was pretty weird to be a Panto Queen on Saturday and a nurse on Monday! But the variety of work that is showbiz makes it such a great vocation.

Luckily, I was given the script of Romeo & Juliet several weeks before. I had to read it on a daily basis to familiarise myself with the dialogue. I came to realise that Shakespeare's language is quite decipherable once you get the gist of it. Like any script really. It's just that his is more thorough and beautifully written - more flowery than the Botanical Gardens!

What a fabulous experience, tho. Once I'd really got to grips with the play I enjoyed every moment. It was a joy to see the audience enjoying themselves, especially the younger students giggling nervously at the double entendre!

We had quite a few sex Gods in the cast, who certainly gave the girls something amounting to palpitations. 

Once again, we had a great camaraderie between us. Nearly every week it was someone's birthday, and each one was celebrated. In fact, Jane, our Company Manager, carried with her boxes of compulsory party poppers and paper plates!

With a play as long as Romeo & Juliet you really need a release, especially after a matinee day. So it was great to have parties and visit clubs, etc. My ethos has always been "work hard, play hard" as you feel you've earned your leisure time.

I tell you what, tho', the concentration required for 'Speare is phenomenal, especially because the dialogue is so well-known, so if you get your thou's and thee's in the wrong place, the rhythm goes, along with the text.

Despite that, I would definitely do the "Bard" again. Thanx to luvly Jenny King, the Producer, for the chance to do it.

Caught up with loads of mates after and had a great night watching Footloose. Fab energy. Was out of my seat in a flash. As was everyone else. Luvly to be so well entertained.

Next night went to the 'Annual Quiz' at the Grovesnor House for the cancer charity "Children with Lukemia", always hosted by the fabulous Jeremy Beadle. Caught up with showbiz pals from Corrie, Eastenders and The Bill. A great night. I won an enormous bottle of champagne for dancing. A cross between Noddy Holder and Freddie Mercury!

Had a great time at Langham Hilton. A very camp tea dance, organised by my pal Gloria (Hunniford) to raise funds for the Caron Keating Foundation. Caron, as you may know, died from breast cancer, so it was a fitting fundraiser, as well as fun. Cliff Richard sang a song, acapella, dedicated to Caron. Superb! Every note was perfect. He even took off his belt and signed it for an auction item. Unfortunately, everything else stayed on. He's such a good sport.

Chris Biggins made a great job of the auction, and everyone entered into the spirits - not the alcohol type, as there was only tea from the Orient.

We were treated to a stunning dance cabaret, provided by the professional participants of Strictly Come Dancing. And we got to dance with them. Make no mistake - they were fit!! How fab to be samba'd to death!

I was wearing a tiara that promptly left my head after a particularly energetic move, whereupon I trod on it. Well, it's now become a necklace, as I squashed it flat!

It was great to see people I've worked, premiered, and partied with... Robert Powell, Victor Spinetti, Lionel Blair, Guitar legend Bert Weedon, Paul and Debbie Daniels, Zoe Lucker, and members of the public who had bought tickets to have a chat with everyone, and to contribute to a great cause.

It was particularly good to have a luvly chat with Michael Barrymore. He looked great. He is undoubtedly a fab talent, and whatever his past troubles, it was good to see him again.

Later, my friend, Mario and I ventured to a pub in Islington - well, more a hi-tech bar, actually. There I was in my long, sequinned frock, squashed tiara, feather boa, silver shoes and a sparkling handbag. Unfortunately I got mistaken for that night's drag act!

Still hungry for entertainment, I went to Malaga - not that evening, a week later. Two friends own an apartment in a luvly place in Calahonda. Fabulous. An old type, Spanish dwelling, still with original fittings and a superb balcony view of the luvly aquamarine sea. 

I should be doing A Place In The Sun!

Nightlife was ten minutes away. Met loads of ex-pats. All luvly. And just one or two "Dodgy Daves", with broad noses!

A fab night was had at 'Bunny's', a drag cabaret club. Just my type of stuff. I luv a bot of camp! Never! Of course, most of the audience was British, so we all had a good old knees up.

I luv foraging around in the local supermarkets. Everything seems so much better than our stuff. It's just pshychological, really. Although I couldn't get enough of Spanish tomatoes. I'm mad about tomatoes in general. I'm coming back as one so I can spend my whole life in a greenhouse.

Just before I went to Malaga, or Malager as I call it, I appeared on Loose Women. I just luv that show. They look after you extremely well, sending cars, which often these days is a bonus. Pity, really. Most programmes have a "limited" budget these days, which usually means "not much money in it, but you'll get lunch!".

The show is very tightly run. Staff know exactly what they're doing and most importantly, it's fun and informative. I just hate working on, what I consider, sub-standard stuff. Anyway, that was all good.

Saw an extremely good production of a new muscial entitled Enchanted. Written, acted and produced entirely by ex-students of Guildford School of Acting. I must salute their endeavours. I was royally entertained. The performances were excellent, script very good, if too long, but first-timers very often are, I wish them all well.

Had a great, but hectic, time appearing on the Prince's Trust 30th Anniversary. So many mates were there, plus people I've seen but don't really know. So, it was a nice adventure. A difficult thing to organise. Live stuff really does have to stick to the itinerary. Especially on ITV, with the advertising input.

I've never seen so many walky-talkies!

Had a great catch-up with my mate Les Dennis. Great to chat with Ronnie Corbett. I had my heels on, so he appeared to look like an inhabitant of Lilliput! He's enjoying a real rennaisance at the moment. It's great. What marvellous work he did with Ronnie Barker.

Jonathan Ross and I had some banter about who was wearing the loudest outfit. I think it was a draw.

The only downside to functions like the Trust is that one is always asked to repair to the bar for "canapes and conviviality". Nothing wrong with that, but actors luvingly refer to this as "hostility in the crush bar", so called, as the clamour for drinks is 20-deep and the canapes usually consist of pastry-based ingredients. So every time you have a chat. you choke on the puff! Not conducive to witty conversation.

Luvly Duncan, ex-Blue band was there. Ant and Dec hosting. So many people you would all know.

Also, a few days later, a very nice acknowledgment from HRS Charles, thanking us for our participation. You know, I've always liked him, especially when Hi-De-Hi! was at its peak and he came to the Blue Peter studio to do something with plastic, and as he passed our dressing rooms he gracefully shouted "Ho-De-Hi!". Obviously, totally wrong, but he said it with spirit!

Am doing a programme called Destination Lunch with Judith Chalmers and Peter Purves. Luv them. Due to be broadcast on Sky TV. It's a new lunchtime chat show, hence the title, and will go out live on Sky, Monday 7th August.

Will be in Nottingham, week-commencing 28th August, for another stint of Vagina Monologues. Just luv that show.

By the time you read this, I will have done the Press Launch for panto. Mansfield Palace Theatre, being wicked again. It's a luvly theatre. I've played it before and was lucky enough to see my mate, Ray Meagher, there two years ago doing his King Rat.

Have been offered a really good play - one performer and 18 characters! A challenge, eh? We're looking to do it after panto, so I'll keep you posted.

Off to Regents Park Theatre to see my luvly mate, Joshua Dallas, in The Boyfriend. Hoping for a good night, as the show, although quite trite and cute, offers good characters and tunes. What I call "a bit of trivia" but sending you home with a feel-good glow. And nothing wrong with that.

I've decided my New Year Resolution starts now, ie; my efforts to keep you informed on a more regular basis will be implemented forthwith. Thanx John, who sent an email to nudge me in that direction.

My thanx to all of you who are loyal and supportive, older and newer, especially, too, to Davie who manages and indeed, controls my site and is very valued, especially by professionals who wish to engage in on-going developments. Thanx Davie,  I so appreciate what you do.

Special thanx, too, to Rob Cope, who's input is invaluable.

Hope we've caught up now - look forward to monthly missives!

Much luv to you all - and don't burn!