IT's no secret Yorkshire is a great place for cycling ­— but lesser well-known is that it is also the birthplace of one of the, if not the, country's greatest ever cyclist Beryl Burton.

And the timing could not have been better for the Octagon's celebration of the extraordinary life of cycling champ and housewife, Beryl ­— who smashed records and beat top competitors of both genders ­— as top-level cycling returns to Yorkshire with the UCI Road World Championships.

Bolton actor and playwright Maxine Peake penned the play about this incredible woman to shine a light on this unsung hero of the sporting world.

And the bar has been set high with the telling of this awe-inspiring story of a Yorkshire lass, who in defiance of medical experts was determined to make her mark ­— which she did after a chance meeting with a man who would become her husband.

A talented and hugely enthusiastic ensemble cast bring Beryl's remarkable story to life in Bolton Library and Museum's theatre.

The whole of the intimate theatre space is effectively utilised for the staging of this production with races played out in and around the audience.

What follows is a high-octane production.

Actors, who play a number of a parts, also take on the role of the narrator, in which they reflect the audience's awe at Beryl's achievement and incredulity that her story seems to have been largely forgotten. And it is for this reason why for this reason this brilliant production works so well.

The laughs, the groans ­— whenever Lancashire is mentioned ­— and the incredible poignancy of this production is cleverly played out.

Tottington actor Vicky Binns, plays Beryl as an adult ­— housewife, mother and champ ­— and her outstanding performance brings to life the extraordinary woman's passion and grit showing why Beryl's story needs to be celebrated and spoken about every time cycling greats are spoken about.

It is hard to believe that this is Matthew Heywood's professional stage debut, with such ease does he command the stage and move effortlessly from character to character.

Chris Jack gives a strong performance as Charlie Burton, emotionally portraying the love he has for Beryl and the sacrifices he made for her love of cycling.

Flora Spencer-Longhurst portrayal of Young Beryl sets the stage for Beryl's story, her drive, her motivation.

It is hard to imagine a better cast pulling-off this heartwarming feel-good production ­— they seemed to enjoy performing it as much as the audience did watching it.

So get on your bikes and enjoy the ride of this smash-hit fast paced production for cycling and non-cycling fans alike.

The play runs until Saturday, October 19.

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