Two actors, three classic episodes and 25 different characters - the Dad’s Army Radio Show heads to The Lowry, Salford Quays on Sunday with afternoon and evening performances.

The stars of the show David Benson and Jack Lane talk about the enduring appeal of one of the great comedy series.

Which of the main characters do you each play?

JACK: I play Mainwaring, Jones, Pike and other incidental characters.

DAVID: An assortment of platoon regulars: Wilson, Frazer, Godfrey, Walker. I also get to play some of the less-frequently seen but equally loved stalwarts like The Vicar, The Verger, Hodges and Mrs Fox.

Who’s your favourite character to play and why?

JACK: Captain Mainwaring. He’s a tricky voice to get right but Arthur Lowe’s timing is second to none, my main objective is to nail that. His exasperated reactions to Jones and lofty responses to Wilson are heaven for any actor. I have a great deal of fun with them.

DAVID: I love playing Sergeant Wilson – which means playing John Le Mesurier, of course: utterly charming and elegant in his self-characterisation. I used to impersonate Le Mesurier when I was a schoolboy for my own secret pleasure.

Do any characters pose you particular problems?

JACK: The only problem is the sheer speed of changes in tone, body language and character – but it’s all about breath control and vocal choreography. s.

DAVID: Godfrey is a very tricky voice to get right. When the line before might have been in Frazer’s ferocious brogue, it can be a little difficult to adjust to Godfrey’s frail and faltering delivery.

Growing up were you a fan of the original TV series?

JACK: I was a huge fan! Listening to the cassettes of the radio series when I was eight, I would fall asleep to them, so those characters are burnt into my memory. I wore out my VHS copies. I knew it line-for-line, so the job was half done when the opportunity of playing them came up!

DAVID: I remember the words Dad’s Army being spoken by a schoolfriend when I was seven and I wanted to know what it was as it sounded very interesting.

So, I must have been watching it from the age of seven which means I saw it from the second series onwards. It is deeply entrenched in my life and I like most of the nation I adore it and somehow believe that it was all done especially for me.

How do the radio scripts differ - if at all - from the TV show?

DAVID: The brilliant adaptations of the telly scripts by Harold Snoad and Michael Knowles for Radio Four sometimes left out exchanges, one-liners and even whole scenes. On comparing the published Dad’s Army scripts with the broadcast versions against the radio transcripts we made – we tried all the versions out, and then line-by-line selected the best of each to come up with our own versions for show.

JACK: They differ greatly at times, depending on how visual the TV episode had been. Some dialogue was clearly removed for running time issues, as the narrative on radio has to allow for more descriptive dialogue to be added. We’ve replaced many original lines from TV episodes simply because they were too funny to lose.

What age group does your show appeal to and attract?

DAVID: Dad’s Army seems to be totally universal in its appeal. We have many elderly people coming to see us, who feel included and connected to our work, and to very young people indeed.

We had one wonderful matinee in Bury St Edmunds, when half the audience was a large party of elderly people from a local care-home and the rest were 15-year-old drama students on an outing. They all seemed to be equally engaged and the theatre rocked with their combined laughter.

Dad’s Army Radio Show, The Lowry, Salford Quays, Sunday, January 20. Details from 0843 208 6005 or