ICONIC is a word that comes to mind when Hanif Kureishi's screenplay for My Beautiful Launderette is talked about.

It was Oscar-nominated for breaking down barriers in a love story set in the dark and depressing Thatcher era backdrop of 1985.

It has since been a successful play originally directed by Nikolai Foster and toured in 2019 with new music provided by those pop music mould-breakers the Pet Shop Boys.

Now it's on a 2024 UK tour and the issues and social problems it highlights remain as strong as ever.

It's a check-list of subject matters that would dominate a whole series of Question Time debates: culture; gender; class and racism.

This production features impressive design strengths rom Grace Smart.

There is superb lighting throughout - changing scenarios at the flock of a switch from a grey and dismal laundry to a neon-lit welcoming place and it also transforms into a disco.

There is attention to detail with posters advertising Live Aid, Freddie Mercury and Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe (Pet Shop Boys re-surfacing again).

Here director Nicole Behan keeps a steady pace of over two and a half hours (including interval).

A hard working eight-strong cast double up on roles and there are some striking fight scenes showing the violent cloud forever hanging in the air.

It's while being targeted for a race-fuelled attack by a fascist gang that Omar (Luca Chadwick-Patel) rekindles a relationship with school pal Johnny (Sam Mitchell) a National Front sympathiser who, despite a thuggish outer shell, has a sensitive inner-lining.

There is a lot of crisp dialogue as families battle it out for status and financial domination.

The humour stems from family the in-fighting and the power struggles laced with a menacing spectre not far behind.

My Beautiful Laundrette had something relevant to say in the mid 80s . . . it still does thanks to this illuminating, powerful and - at certain times - moving version.

VERDICT: Four stars - a fresh spin

The production is on until Saturday March 30 

Tickets from 0151 709 4776