Bill on the bill

Bailey joins festival fundraiser

Bill Bailey has joined the line-up of the fundraising finale of the London Comedy Festival.

The star of Black Books will appear alongside the likes of Jo Brand, Jenny Éclair and Al Murray at the benefit for Breakthrough Breast Cancer.

Others on the bill for the May 26 show at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, are Hattie Hayridge, Men In Coats, Ian Stone, Gina Yashere and Richard Morton. John Moloney and Tim Clark will compere.

Moloney organised the event because of the support the charity gave his sister, Shiela, after was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 30.

Writing in the festival programme, he said: "It was an incredibly cruel blow. Our parents had just retired back to Ireland and an all-round rosy future suddenly seemed incredibly bleak.

"As a family, we tip-toed through years of invasive surgery, a double masectomy - and we could only watch and pray for something positive. Anything.

"Gradually she got 'better'. The cancer was in remission. Check-ups became less frequent.

"Breakthrough gave her support through the cruellest of moments. They helped rebuild her self-esteem as surgeons rebuilt her body.

"But the shadows are back. Pre-cancerous cells have been found in her ovaries.

"Two days before she was due to give her personal testimony at our gala, she will be back in hospital. But please support Breakthrough by buying a ticket."

Tickets for the show, priced from £15 to £30, are available from the box office on 020 7494 5092.

Breakthrough home page

Published: 9 May 2002

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