Sir Ian McKellen is as pleased as punch after delving into his family tree and learning that he is not the first member of the family to tread the boards.

While his paternal grandmother Alice was a gifted amateur singer, her uncle Frank Lowes had a varied career in Victorian theatre and Ian even gets to recreate one of Frank’s performances.

But he seems even more delighted by Frank’s father, warehouse clerk Robert, who may have originated the idea of the weekend by battling to get Manchester warehouse workers an extra half-day off each week.

Finally, there’s a trip to the Lake District to check out the beautiful engravings made by Robert’s artist father James. What a talented family!