Benny Hill was Britain's biggest ever comedy export, shown in more than 100 countries and adored the world over.
Benny's comedy was marinated in the honest vulgarity of English popular humour. This shy, modest man was genuinely a people's comic, loved by millions.
To his distracters Benny was down-market and perhaps sexist. But there was far more to Hill's comedy than mild smut of seaside postcards (not that there’s anything wrong with that). He was the first comedian of the television age, and the first to use the medium as a target.
A typical Benny Hill TV show mixed parodies of TV hits with visual comedy, clever mime work, comic songs and character comedy. Lisping Fred Scuttle and Ernie the Milkman are remembered with affection to this day.
Benny was a genius and it’s a national scandal that his legacy is unrecognised in his own country. That’s why I'm leading a campaign for a statue to be raised to honour his memory.
Graeme Ibbeson, who sculpted the excellent Eric Morecambe bronze at Morecambe, has designed this wonderful saluting Fred Scuttle and a platoon of showbusiness stars are ready to help us drum up the cash. We even have Southampton council eager to display the statue prominently in their town.
It only takes 600 of Benny’s fans worldwide to donate £10 and we’ll make the dream possible.
Risks and challenges
Graham Ibbeson has successfully raised public statues before, including the Eric Morecambe statue at Morecambe. You can read all about him here http://www.grahamibbeson.com/ We have already raised the funds to pay for Graham to complete a fiberglass version of the statue and we have appeared on BBC TV to speak about it. We also now have the backing of Britain's Daily Star newspaper.
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