‘What a kind and caring man he is’ - Panto star Ben Langley makes surprise visit to superfan

Ben with Niesha and Ione Dunleavy Credit: Paula Dunleavy

Ben with Niesha and Ione Dunleavy Credit: Paula Dunleavy - Credit: Archant

Theatre Royal panto star Ben Langley proved his personality is just as big as his heart as he made a surprise visit to his biggest fan.

Niesha Moss, aged nine, has loved watching Ben since she first saw him in the Norwich Theatre Royal pantomime five years ago.

Whilst Niesha lives in Holmfirth in West Yorkshire, every Christmas she watches the show with her family before spending Christmas with her grandma in Norwich.

Mum Paula Dunleavy said: 'When she was just six years old, she researched Norwich panto online and found out Ben Langley and Richard Gauntlett's names.

'She found lots of clips of Ben and Richard's trailers and watched them over and over and became a superfan.'

Ben Langley made a surprise visit to a super fan Credit: Paula Dunleavy

Ben Langley made a surprise visit to a super fan Credit: Paula Dunleavy - Credit: Archant


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Ahead of watching Aladdin this Christmas, mum Paula wrote to the theatre asking Ben, who plays Wishee Washee, to give Niesha a shoutout on stage.

Unfortunately the letter didn't arrive in time, but afterwards the family received an email from the theatre asking if they could have Niesha's email address.

READ MORE: 7 cheap and free things to do in Norfolk this week - from brewery tour to balletAfter receiving an email from Ben, Niesha was 'so happy and surprised she burst into tears' and was then asked for her grandma's home address.

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Mrs Dunleavy said: 'We had a lovely Christmas and packed up our things on Boxing Day ready to go home and nanny shouted from the kitchen.

Ben Langley with mum Paula, Ione and Niesha Credit: Paula Dunleavy

Ben Langley with mum Paula, Ione and Niesha Credit: Paula Dunleavy - Credit: Archant

'She'd seen Ben walking up the drive to the front door and we all screamed and Niesha froze.

'Ben came in to meet Niesha and the rest of the family and he chatted to each one of us and had photos.

'What a kind, generous and caring man he is. He has made my daughter's dream come true.'

READ MORE: 'A delight of a discovery' - the Norwich pub where the food is worth travelling forThe family has also called for Ben Langley to be reinstated for panto next year, after it was revealed the comic has not been asked to appear in 2019 as the show goes in a 'new direction'.

Norwich Theatre Royal's 2018 pantomime - Aladdin. Ben Langley as Wishee Washee, Richard Gauntlett as

Norwich Theatre Royal's 2018 pantomime - Aladdin. Ben Langley as Wishee Washee, Richard Gauntlett as Widow Twankey and Steven Roberts as Aladdin. Picture: Simon Finlay Photography - Credit: Simon Finlay Photography

Mrs Dunleavy said: 'Norwich Theatre Royal what are you thinking - the people of Norwich can't stand for this - my daughters and my whole family will be devastated if he's not there next year.'

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