A MINISTER from Bromsgrove is losing his beard and swapping his dog collar for a dress as he steps out of the pulpit and on to the stage in an upcoming pantomime.

Rev. Stephen Levett, minister of Bromsgrove Methodist Church, is taking on the role of Dame Granny Annie in The Snow Queen, based on the Hans Christian Andersen classic of the same name.

The show is being performed by Jigsaw Players, a Bromsgrove-based community theatre group which welcomes people of all ages and abilities.

Rev. Levett said: "It is a real community effort which audiences enjoy. A particular joy for me is I’m getting to perform with my son Nathan which makes it a bit of a family affair.

"Last year, (director) Maggie Bishton persuaded me to take on the role of the Dame.

"Efforts on my part to be allowed me to keep my facial hair and be a bearded lady were vetoed so I had to shave off the beard for the first time in over a decade.

"It felt quite strange, more so than wearing a dress!

"I must have performed well enough last year because once more I’m getting to be the Dame and again the beard will have to go.

"I’m sure I’ll grow it back, but whether congregational members coming to the show will ever be able to take me seriously again remains to be seen!"

Performances will take place over two weekends at The Trinity Centre, 411 Old Birmingham Road, Lickey B45 8ES.

Tickets are £11 each. For more information or to purchase tickets, call 07919 505764 or 07772 645722 or email jigsawplayers15@gmail.com

Performances start from Friday, November 29 at 7pm, Saturday, November 30 at 1.30pm and 7pm, and Sunday, December 1 at 4pm.

They continue the following week on Thursday, December 5 at 7pm, Friday, December 6 at 7pm, Saturday, December 7 at 4pm and Sunday, December 8 at 2pm.