Alison Hammond, Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford to star alongside Sheridan Smith in This Morning panto

ALISON Hammond, Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford will take part in a special This Morning panto, alongside Sheridan Smith.

The daytime TV trio will also be joined by Holly Willoughby, Phillip Schofield, Lisa Snowdon and Joanna Lumley for the festive spectacular.

The star-studded show will put the spotlight firmly on the ailing theatre industry, which has been devastated by the coronavirus pandemic.

It will feature a mash-up of classic tales such as Snow White, Aladdin, Peter Pan and Dick Whittington.

Jolly Eamonn will play the role of Father Christmas, while Ruth will be Mrs Claus.

New Friday morning host Alison will be the Fairy Godmother, Holly will play Cinderella, Phil will be her sidekick Buttons and fashion guru Lisa will play Tinkerbell.

Sheridan, who is starring as Peter Pan, told the Mirror: “The whole theatre and creative industries have been devastated by the virus and lockdown.

“Hopefully doing this Panto with This Morning will provide some of these people much needed work and give everyone some hope and laughter for better times to come."

While Wicked Stepmother Joanna said: "To be able to help them in any small way is a privilege and a pleasure; and I am thrilled that we shall be paying tribute to them in this sensational one-off pantomime."

Other celebs taking part include Christopher Biggins as Dame Sarah the Cook, Dr Ranj Singh as the Genie, Gyles Brandreth as Widow Twankey and Matthew Wright as Captain Hook.

It will also prove to be a jubilant farewell for Eamonn and Ruth as the curtain falls on their time as Friday morning hosts.

Last month Alison and Dermot O'Leary were confirmed as This Morning's new Friday hosts, beginning on January 8.

The married pair, who have presented This Morning for 14 years, are being bumped down to hosting the show during holidays.

Eamonn and Ruth, both 60, wished the new hosts good luck in an emotional tweet where they said: "It's a changing of the guard on Fridays from January.

"We hope you make Alison and Dermot as welcome as you’ve made us over the years. Have a Ball you two!

"It’s not Goodbye from us, it’s simply Au Revoir until the next half term."

Dermot and Alison also released statements with the X Factor presenter saying they had "big shoes to fill".

Alison, 45, said: "I never dreamt that when I first joined This Morning – initially for a few months – that I would still be there 19 years later.

"I genuinely care about the show and the viewers who watch, so it’s a huge privilege and honour to be hosting a show I adore so much.

"I’m just really excited to be doing even more of what I love alongside the lovely Dermot.”

Dermot added: "I'm deeply thrilled and honoured to be joining the This Morning team next year.

"We have huge shoes to fill and we are well aware what a privilege it is to be stepping into them.

"Above all, we want to have fun and for you to be able to kick your weekend off with a smile, especially given the year we've all had.

"I'm delighted to be co-hosting with the living embodiment of sunshine on a rainy day. I can't wait to get started.”

It was revealed in November that the long-standing TV couple were being replaced with Alison Hammond and Dermot O'Leary on the daytime show after 14 years.

In an interview with New magazine the previous week, Ruth insisted she didn't know anything about a line-up change on This Morning – and that she wasn't worried about losing her job.

When asked if the show was headed for a shake-up, Ruth told the publication: "There's always talk, I don't know. Not that anybody's told me."

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