Felixstowe: Comedian Roy Hudd makes flying visit to the seaside

TOP comedian Roy Hudd made a flying visit to Felixstowe – and received a very special souvenir.

Mr Hudd was in town as part of his preparations for a special event next month, when he will be returning to be the guest speaker at the Felixstowe Freight Club lunch.

To mark his visit, Evening Star editor Nigel Pickover presented him with a new I Love Felixstowe mug to add to his collection from shows, societies and places with which he has enjoyed connections.

Mr Hudd, who started in showbiz 51 years ago as a Butlins’ Redcoat, said he wanted to see the venue, the Orwell Hotel, and find out a bit more about the freight club and the plans for the event on December 8.

“It’s going to be rather a serious event,” he joked.

“Sometimes I will just turn up at an event and do it, but if I can I like to go along before and meet the people involved and see the venue.

“It helps me to prepare and if I know a bit about the people and the place, it will be a lot more fun for me and a lot more fun for the audience at the lunch.”

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He was accompanied by his wife, Debbie Flitcroft, who directs pantomime and will this year be directing Jack and the Beanstalk at the Marina Theatre, Lowestoft.

It will mean a much more relaxed Christmas than usual for the couple, who live in Suffolk, and will also be away from any commitments in the West End.

“The last five years Debbie has been directing panto at theatres up and down the country and I’ve had to get Christmas ready!” he said.

Mr Hudd, 75, who for many years has been the president of Felixstowe Musical Theatre, couldn’t remember visiting Felixstowe before and felt the Spa Pavilion may be missing from the list of places he has played.

During his illustrious career, the performer has acted on stage and on TV in everything from panto to Coronation Street to Shakespeare, was host of the long-running radio favourite The News Huddlines for 26 years, and has also written shows and books.