A fund-raising campaign has been started by the late entertainer Roy Hudd's wife to acquire a permanent memorial outside one of his favorite theaters.
A local of Stowmarket, Suffolk, the actor passed away in March 2020 at the age of 83.
Because the pandemic prevented his wife Debbie from holding a funeral, she came up with the idea for a statue in Bury St. Edmunds.
She said, "Roy would hate that because he was a man of the people. I don't want Roy up on a pedestal.".
So, he's going to be sitting on a bench outside the Theatre Royal in Bury St. Edmunds, fingers crossed.
He adored that theater so much. ".
Sculptor Sean Hedges-Quinn of Suffolk will make the statue, which will cost about £100,000 to produce.
When he unveiled the artist's sculpture of his friend, music hall actress Gracie Fields, in Rochdale, he first got to know Hudd.
Along with the Dad's Army character Captain Mainwaring statue in Thetford, Norfolk, Hedges-Quinn also created statues of Sir Alf Ramsey, Sir Bobby Robson, and Kevin Beattie for the Ipswich Town Football Club.
Hudd, a specialist in the history of music halls, had a long and fruitful career that lasted more than 60 years.
Before transitioning to the stage, screen, and radio, he began his career as a Redcoat at Butlin's entertaining vacationers.
The celebrity was well-known for both his long-running The News Huddlines program on BBC Radio 2 and his portrayal of undertaker Archie Shuttleworth on Coronation Street.
He also made appearances in Benidorm, Holby City, Midsomer Murders, and Call the Midwife toward the end of his acting career.
According to Mrs. Hudd, "He loved working in radio and would then want to jump to Shakespeare or doing Max Miller or his old time music hall.".
He was working with many different age groups of people as well, and he loved performing in pantomime for young audiences. It kept everything interesting for him.
Along with applause, he believed laughter to be the most contagious sound in the world. ".
- On May 14, 2023, the News Huddlines will perform a benefit performance at the Sondheim Theatre in London with Alison Steadman and John Culshaw.