AFTER The Full Monty, the 1997 film, and The Full Monty, The Musical spin-off, here is The Fuller Monty, the new play that goes even further.

Essentially, it is another strip off the old block, but it also marks the first time that original screenwriter Simon Beaufoy has written for the stage.

In revisiting his award-winning, $256 million-grossing debut success, Beaufoy has replayed the film’s greatest bits and greatest hits (Hot Chocolate, Donna Summer Tom Jones) with added social poignancy in our new age of recession and pertinent political punch in the wake of Baroness Thatcher’s dementia demise.

The setting remains the Sheffield of Nineties’ industrial strife, the blade stuck into the heart of the Republic of South Yorkshire’s steel industry, stripping the steelworkers of their jobs, their dignity and their future.

Margaret hangs over Beaufoy’s play both metaphorically and physically: the steelworks crane, dormant since the factory fell cold and silent, was named after our beloved leader. Its former operators, skinny ex-prisoner Gaz (Kenny Doughty) and big Dave (Roger Morlidge), have snuck into their old workplace to nick a girder for scrap.

So begins the familiar story that brings in insecure security guard Lomper (Craig Gazey, the show’s principal comic clown), and Gerald (Simon Rouse), the jumped-up foreman with a sideline in dancing at the Conservative club and a free-spending wife he is yet to tell he has lost his job.

Here come the girls: Mandy (Caroline Carver), Gaz’s ex-wife, now threatening to cut off his links with son Nathan (Travis Caddy/Jack Hollington/Jay Olpin/Ewan Revill) as he falls behind with the maintenance; and Jean (Rachel Lumberg), Dave’s long-suffering yet devoted cleaner wife.

Here come the boys, when Gaz suggests forming a strip act, a kind of DIY Chippendales, amid the ennui of the jobs club. In the line-up are Billy Fisher-esque dreamer Gaz, dance routine teacher Gerald, looning Lomper and lovable lump Dave; plus Londoner Horse (Sidney Cole), with his James Brown moves and ailing body, and Guy (Kieran O’Brien), he of the unfeasibly impressive appendage.

You probably knew all that already, but familiarity makes it even more enjoyable for the female hordes and smattering of men, now that you can see The Full Monty – and the full monty finale – in the flesh.

That is to cheapen the impact of Beaufoy’s play, however. Yes, there is the tease of the strip, but The Full Monty mines its story from impotence, unemployment, despair and suicide attempts and its comedy is rooted in the stuff of life: desperation, resilience, love, community, fighting back; Yorkshire. Just like the best of John Godber’s similarly impassioned works.

Sheffield Theatres’ artistic director Daniel Evans and his cast are in magnificent form. You will laugh, you will cry, you will cheer… and you will remember the moment when Jean makes her simple but eloquent “statement” on a bust of Mrs T.

The Full Monty, Leeds Grand Theatre, until May 18. Box office: 0844 848 2700 or