Stars pay tribute to Norman Wisdom at 90

The stars turned out to celebrate funnyman Sir Norman Wisdom’s 90th birthday today.

The stars turned out to celebrate funnyman Sir Norman Wisdom’s 90th birthday today.

Sir Norman, who recently announced his retirement, was guest of honour at a reception organised by showbusiness charity, The Grand Order of Water Rats.

Guests included Dame Vera Lynn, broadcaster Angela Rippon, magician Paul Daniels and former Coronation Street actress Denise Welch.

Comic Ken Dodd, who also attended the party, said: “He’s fabulous, The little giant, a wonderful, wonderful man.

“It just proves to you that falling over is good for you. He puts his heart and soul into being a funnyman, a clown.”

Auf Wiedersehen, Pet actor Tim Healy said: “I’m honoured and flattered and delighted to be here.

“He’s a legend in my eyes. He’s got a heart of gold.”

Absolutely Fabulous star June Whitfield, who was also at the do at London’s Royal Lancaster Hotel, added: “I’m delighted. It’s a great thing today.”

Coronation Street actor Bill Tarmey, who plays Jack Duckworth, said: “I had the great joy of working with him.

“He’s brilliant. It’s just something that the man has that affects everybody, all over the world.”

Entertainer Bobby Davro joked: “He’s getting so old now that apparently Norman’s national insurance number is one.”

The comic legend announced he was going to retire last year after his 90th birthday on February 4.

The decision ends a stage and screen career which has spanned well over 50 years.

Sir Norman, whose film career began in 1948, has described his childhood as “straight out of a Charles Dickens novel”.

His mother left home, and his “brutal” and drunken father put his boys into care.

In his youth, he went from job to job, and learnt how to box as a cabin boy on a boat bound for Argentina.

Despite his diminutive stature, Sir Norman, who has been divorced twice, joined the Army, where he discovered, by chance, that he could make people laugh.

More in this section

img MPU


Join our host Irish Examiner Life/Style Editor, Esther McCarthy with guests Caroline Casey, Emer O'Neill, Edel Coffey and Dr. Tara Shine as we make a call to action for accelerating women's equality.

ieFood pic
ieFood Logo

In the Kitchen with

 Video Series

Join Colm O'Gorman in his kitchen as he makes flatbreads in minutes and crispy air fryer chicken. Explore why he thinks chilli is the spice of life, and find out why his 50-year-old food mixer is his most important piece of kitchen equipment.

Puzzles logo

Puzzles hub

Visit our brain gym where you will find simple and cryptic crosswords, sudoku puzzles and much more. Updated at midnight every day. PS ... We would love to hear your feedback on the section right HERE.


The best food, health, entertainment and lifestyle content from the Irish Examiner, direct to your inbox.

Sign up