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British Comedy

Humph update
23/04/2008 00:00 GMT

Posted by lisa

The following is from Humph's official website (

Humph was admitted to Barnet Hospital on Wednesday 16th April and has undergone major surgery. He is currently in a stable condition.

We would like to thank everyone for their Get-Well Messages which kept him in sparkling form up until the op.

To send Humph a Get Well Message please click on

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Terrible news tonight - the BBC website has reported that Humph has passed away

Veteran jazz musician and radio host Humphrey Lyttelton has died aged 86.

The chairman of BBC Radio 4's comedy panel show I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue recently had surgery in an attempt to repair an aortic aneurysm.

The latest series of the quiz programme was cancelled after Lyttelton was admitted to Barnet Hospital in north London on 16 April.

BBC Director General Mark Thompson described "Humph" as "a unique, irreplaceable talent".

'Towering figure'

Lyttelton retired from hosting Radio 2's The Best of Jazz last month after more than 40 years presenting the show.

He hosted I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue - the "self-styled antidote to panel games" - since 1972, appearing alongside regulars Graeme Garden, Barry Cryer and Tim Brooke-Taylor.

In 1993, he received a Sony Gold Award for services to broadcasting.

Lyttelton began playing the trumpet in 1936 and was still touring with his band up until his admission to hospital.

Best known for the song Bad Penny Blues, they became the first British jazz act to enter the top 20 in 1956.

He was honoured with a lifetime achievement award at both the Post Office British Jazz Awards in 2000 and at the first BBC Jazz Awards in 2001.
The BBC's Mark Thompson said Lyttelton would leave an "enormous gap" in British cultural life as a whole and in the lives of many millions of listeners.

"One of the towering figures of British jazz, he excelled too as a writer, cartoonist, humorist and of course as a broadcaster on television and radio," he said.

"On "I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue" all of his gifts were on show, his warmth and conviviality, his wit, his mischievousness.

"He was a unique, irreplaceable talent. Like his many fans, we owe him an enormous debt of gratitude. Like them, all of us at the BBC feel a tremendous sense of loss."

The controller of Radio Four, Mark Damazer, said Lyttelton encompassed "so many" of the virtues people wanted from Radio Four comedy.

"He's just a colossally good broadcaster and possessed of this fantastic sense of timing," he said.

"It's a very, very sad day but we should celebrate and be very grateful for how much he did for Radio Four because he really was one of the giants over the last 40 years, really terrific. "
Posted by:Kay


date: 25/04/2008 22:59 GMT
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