AS Kat and Alfie in EastEnders they became one of the nation's favourite and most iconic television partnerships.

Now the pair are swapping 'the square' for the stage as the much-loved TV stars Shane Richie and Jessie Wallace star in this year’s pantomime spectacular Robin Hood at the Mayflower Theatre.

Robin Hood marks their first pantomime together with Shane in the title role of Robin Hood and Jessie playing his love interest Maid Marion.

It runs at Mayflower Theatre from 17 December 2016– 8 January 2017.

It already looks like we can expect high jinx from the fun-loving pair who launched the panto outside the theatre yesterday.

Jessie said: "I'm really excited to be working with Shane. We work so well together but to do a completely different genre of act and not know what to expect will be interesting!"

Shane added: "She won't know if she's working with Peter Pan, Buttons or even if I'm going to come on stage at all!

"We have just finished a ten week run together in Peter James' play A Perfect Murder and in comparison to panto there are perimeters of acting you must keep in but with panto you can be anything you want! I enjoy that freedom, just to let go for three weeks and the audience will be a big part of the show."

High spirited Jessica added: "It's going to be fun, fun, fun: we will have fun and so will the audience : it's party time!"

The pair also spent five months working together in Ireland earlier this year filming what some are calling the Kat and Alfie EastEnders 'spin-off' with a working title of 'Redwater'. The six-part drama, set in a sleepy fishing village, is due to air in January.

Shane explained: "It's the story of Kat trying to find one of her children . We follow that and Alfie's brain tumour in this fictitious Irish community with its own dark secrets; we turn up in the middle of this explosive secret that comes out. It’s really dark, but still has the charm of Kat and Alfie. It's kind of Broadchurch meets The Wicker Man!"

Speaking about their special working relationship Shane added: "We have our own shorthand which helps us in EastEnders. We spend so long together off stage too and I still get people intrigued by that but we are just mates. What's interesting in the business we are in is very few actors are pals with fellow actors. I don't hang out with other people in showbiz but I've mates who are musicians. That's sad! I must give Hugh Jackman a ring later!"

Michael Harrison, Managing Director of Qdos Entertainment’s Pantomimes said “We are thrilled to be bringing Shane and Jessie together to star alongside each other in pantomime for the first time. Mayflower Theatre audiences are in for an unmissable production full of laughter, music, special effects and a fantastic 3D sequence.”

Tickets for Robin Hood are on sale from Mayflower Theatre Box Office tel: 02380 711811 or online at

Shane Richie returns to the Mayflower next March starring as Roy Grace in Peter James' play Not Dead Enough.