IN 1955 all the newspapers gave accounts of the execution of Ruth Ellis, 38, the last woman in Britain to be hanged.

Amanda Whittington’s play, The Thrill of Love, presented by Dunham Thespians, concentrates on events leading to Ruth’s trial or killing her brutal and unfaithful lover, David Blakely.

As Ruth, Laura Kinsella doesn’t quite capture her brassiness, apparent toughness and underlying fragility.

But her uninhibited display of terror in the miscarriage scene proves how good she can be.

Her character makes no attempt to defend herself which leaves her helpless when mitigating circumstances such as Blakely’s violence are not taken into consideration.

There is one man in this heart-tugging play. He is Chris Matthews as Detective Inspector Jack Gale who, alone, understands Ruth’s motive and effectively conveys his opinion.

Men have damaged her life so night club hostess Ruth, turns to the camaraderie of female friends.

The bond between her and night club manager Sylvia (Kath Phillips), model Vicky (Rachael Gallagher) and charlady Doris (Sally-Marianne Hatton) brings stability to her short life.

The special effects are exceptional especially the snow scene.

The saddest scene comes at the end.

It is brave of the Thespians to tackle such a raw subject but, under Martin Clare's direction, they face it head on.

• The Thrill of Love is at Dunham Massey Village Hall until Saturday, November 26. For tickets, book on line or call 07942 823 600. Star rating: * * *