Norman Wisdom named the ultimate Legend of Comedy by Leicester Mercury readers
After giving us almost six decades of laughter, it is no surprise Norman Wisdom has been named the ultimate Legend of Comedy.
Throughout this year's Dave's Leicester Comedy Festival, the Mercury asked readers to vote for their favourite of 20 comedy greats who have performed at the event in its 20-year history.
Mercury editor Richard Bettsworth announced the Legend of Comedy winner during the festival's annual awards ceremony last night.
He said: "This was a very popular public vote and I'm very grateful to all our readers who got involved. It's a terrific result because Norman Wisdom was a patron of the Leicester festival from when it started and his comedy is universal.
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"His work is loved by people of all ages and appeals to people all over the world, so it's very fitting to be able to honour him in this way."
The late Sir Norman's manager, Johnny Mans, was present at the awards ceremony, which was held at The City Rooms, in the city centre.
Other award recipients included Romesh Ranganathan, who picked up the gong for the best show of the festival.
The former maths teacher, who was chosen by a judging panel, also claimed the title of Leicester Mercury Comedian of the Year this year.
Festival organisers have a panel of comedy fans who rated almost 500 shows throughout the two-week event.
The Make Me Happy award went to comedian Rob Gee for his performance at Leicester Central Library on February 20, while the Best New Show award went to Brett Goldstein who performed at the Belmont Hotel in New Walk on February 12.
De Montfort University received a lifetime contribution award, while its radio station, Demon FM, received an award for its contribution.
Festival founder and director Geoff Rowe said: "I was a student at De Montfort University when I put on the first festival in 1994 and the university was very supportive then.
"It's continued to be a sponsor and remains hugely committed to the festival."
The Criterion, in Millstone Lane, was named best small venue, while Just the Tonic, in Granby Street, was named the best big venue.
Geoff said: "Just the Tonic made a good contribution to the festival this year, bringing in people like Johnny Vegas.
"The Criterion had a varied programme and there was always a great atmosphere there."