AS IS often the case with a British summer, planned outdoor events are often ruined by the rain.

When I visited Shaw House to watch an outdoor performance of the Jungle Book, the dark clouds looming overhead gave a constant threat of a torrential downpour.

We went prepared with a large umbrella, waterproofs, and a change of clothes should the heavens decide to open.

Thankfully, the first half was dry, and we enjoyed a picnic, and ice creams from the cafe, as we watched Immersion Theatre’s production against the stunning backdrop of Shaw House.

My four-year-old son was laughing and joining in throughout as he embraced the panto-style booing and hissing, finding the characters’ comedic interactions hilarious.

The musical adaption of the Rudyard Kipling family favourite had something for everyone, with upbeat songs and dancing, colourful characters and the odd joke thrown in for the adults.

The five cast members had plenty of energy, changing costumes at record speed to play the various characters.

Telling the story of their jungle adventure, the animal characters including Baloo the bear and Bagheera the panther attempted to outwit a slithering snake, some cheeky monkeys, and the fierce tiger, Shere Khan, with plenty of audience participation along the way.

It was wonderful to watch families enjoying live theatre together once again.

In the interval children enjoyed the fabulous grounds of Shaw House, running up the grassy banks and finding secret hiding places.

Unfortunately, my fears became a reality when a downpour lasted for the entire second act.

Waterproofs were unpacked as families huddled under umbrellas to avoid getting soaked.

But in true British spirit, the audience stuck it out to the end, when we were rewarded with glorious summer sun to end the evening.

The cast took the motto ‘the show must go on’ to the extreme, as they continued with the upbeat, energetic performance, despite the deluge.

The rain may have left us all a little soggy, but it failed to dampen anyone’s spirits, and there were huge cheers as the cast took a final bow and thanked everyone for staying to support them to the end.

My son left enthusing over the performance, still laughing on the way home in the car. Despite the weather, it was a memorable evening of entertainment and a joy to watch live theatre again.