2,000 celebrate Secombe

Prince and comics pay tribute

More than 2,000 friends and family have paid trubte to Sir Harry Secombe in a memorial service at Westminster Abbey.

Prince Charles were among those at the moving event, alongside a tring of comedians, including Ronnie Corbett, Eric Sykes and Paul Merton.

Sir Harry, who died of prostate cancer in April, at the age of 79, had summarised his life in a short note, which was read by Michael Parkinson, as "records, books, telly, hymns, peritonitis, diabetes, knighthood".

Parkinson described Sir Harry and his Goon Show colleagues, Michael Bentine, Peter Sellers and Spike Milligan, as "the godfathers of post-war British comedy".

And Jimmy Tarbuck said: "If he was looking down now, I know what he would say - 'don't let Ken Dodd take the collection'."

The only surviving Goon, Sir Spike Milligan, was too ill to unable to attend the event, but sent a note saying: "Harry was sweetness of Wales, he really was."

Paul Merton said of the Goons: "It will last as long as recorded humour lasts."

Published: 27 Oct 2001

We see you are using AdBlocker software. Chortle relies on advertisers to fund this website so it’s free for you, so we would ask that you disable it for this site. Our ads are non-intrusive and relevant. Help keep Chortle viable.