The children's ward at York Hospital will be awash with laughter at the start of the New Year when Robinson Crusoe puts down anchor among the beds.

Starlight Children's Foundation is staging a special performance of their pop-up pantomime at the hospital on January 2.

Four actors will don the motley and bring the magic of the sea to cheer up the young patients who will get the chance to sing-along, cheer and generally join in the fun. Families and staff will also be invited.

Rachel Wilson, play specialist at York Hospital, said: “We love the activities, fun, and distraction the pantomime brings to the hospital and we can’t wait for the arrival of Robinson Crusoe. We know that play can significantly help to improve a child’s hospital experience and Starlight’s Christmas Pantomime gives our young patients a chance to forget their illness for a short while and simply have some fun.”

The foundation is a national charity that provides entertainment in hospital and hospices across the UK and grants wishes for seriously and terminally ill children.