A new award will be handed out to the most original comedian at the Edinburgh Fringe this year, in honour of the late Malcolm Hardee.
The accolade will be handed out for the next ten years – though in keeping with Hardee’s infamous disregard for money, it comes with no cash prize.
In fact, judge John Fleming, who co-wrote Hardee’s autobiography, said: ‘To honour Malcolm's memory, after the winner is presented with the award, I will ask them if they could lend us a tenner.’
Hardee, whose on and off-stage exploits are the stuff of Fringe legend, ran South London’s notorious Tunnel Club before establishing the Up The Creek club in Greenwich. He drowned in London three years ago after falling drunkenly from his boat.
Hardee’s children Frank and Poppy said: ‘One of our dad's greatest qualities was finding and supporting new talent. This award will hopefully help to continue to promote new, exciting and slightly eccentric comedy acts at one of the world's most famous comedy festivals. We look forward to seeing what the judges choose.’
The other judges are critics Tim Arthur, Kate Copstick and Dominic Maxwell; and the award will be presented at the Gilded Balloon’s Late N Live show on August 22.