What a carry on as Bill wrecks his toilet seat
Portly TV star Bill Maynard has been suffering from a slight inconvenience for some time.
The 18-stone actor, known to millions as loveable rogue Claude Greengrass from TV police drama Heartbeat, has not been able to find a toilet seat strong enough to take his weight.
The 83-year-old actor, who lives in Burbage, broke the last seat he bought from B&Q which, until recently, had lasted him for four years.
But when he went to buy a replacement for the £170 seat, he discovered the manufacturer which supplied the DIY store chain no longer made the heavy-duty sit-upon.
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Bill said: "My daughter found the B&Q one for me and I had it for four years, but the company which manufactured them doesn't make them any more.
"Now, I cannot find a replacement anywhere. I've been on to the Red Cross and everything. It's a problem for people like me who are disabled and heavy."
Bill, who suffered a stroke 12 years ago and is paralysed down one side, these days relies on a mobility scooter to get himself around.
Ironically, the star of film, stage and TV appeared in the 1971 film Carry On At Your Convenience based on toilet manufacturer W.C. Boggs and Son, playing crude travelling salesman Fred Moore.
Bill said: "I'm heavily into poker these days and play at a number of casinos in Leicester, Coventry and Nottingham. I've broken the toilet seats in two out of three of them.
"I've broken the ones at Maxim's in Nottingham and Ricoh's in Coventry, but not the Gala in Leicester. Maxim's got a new heavier duty seat as a replacement and I haven't broken that one yet."
Bill said: "I'm operating at home without one at the moment because it's broken, and it's not that easy when you're a big lad."
But there might be help in sight for Bill. When the Leicester Mercury contacted B&Q ,a spokesman said: "We're sorry that Mr Maynard cannot find the same toilet seat that he purchased four years ago from us, so we would like to offer him one of our Cedo toilet seats which comes with a 10-year guarantee, as a gesture of goodwill."