A CEO of a theatre company has hit out at a "bizarre" complaint over Yorkshire accents in a recent production in York.

The Northern Broadsides Theatre Company, based in Halifax, was staging Shakespeare's As You Like It at York Theatre Royal theatre between March 23 and 26.

But, it would seem the performance wasn't to everyone's taste after an audience members left the performance as they had an issue with the cast using Yorkshire accents.

Laurie Sansom, artistic director and CEO of Northern Broadsides, said he finds it "bizarre" that some people still feel it’s inappropriate for northern actors to deign to speak Shakespeare’s words.

He said: "We’re all about making bold irreverent work and celebrating northern talent and Shakespeare’s language. Funnily enough no one was speaking like a 1940s BBC radio presenter when his plays were written and we’re proud to be continuing our 30 year mission of liberating these plays from received notions of what’s proper.

"The company’s work has captured the imagination of many new theatre goers and artists by making the lyricism and muscularity of Shakespeare’s words available to everyone. If that still ruffles a few feathers, it’s evidence that our job is far from done.

"It was interesting to me that they didn’t mention any of the much more outlandish additions we’ve made - such us badly behaved goats or a drag queen fool. Rest assured, we will continue to revel in our Yorkshire-ness."

Tom Bird, chief executive of York Theatre Royal, took to Twitter on Monday to vent his disbelief at the complaint from the audience member.

Mr Bird tweeted: "We've got a complaint this morning from someone who left after an hour of Northern Broadside's As You Like It last week, because it had 'Yorkshire accents' in it.

"That's Yorkshire accents, right here in Yorkshire. They want a refund."

Mr Bird's tweet on the complaint sparked more than 1,200 likes and dozens of comments in reply. When asked on Twitter if they would be offering a refund, Mr Bird replied "no chance".

As You Like, the company's 30th anniversary production, was the first full production for the company since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic - and featured a multi-cultural, gender diverse cast.