Entertainment stars join mourners to say final farewell at funeral of Barry Chuckle

Stars of TV, comedy and entertainment joined hundreds of mourners in applause as they said a final farewell to South Yorkshire veteran entertainer Barry Chuckle.

Friday, 17th August 2018, 3:29 pm
Updated Friday, 17th August 2018, 3:30 pm
Paul 'Chuckle' Elliott wipes away tears. Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe.

The 73-year-old, real name Barry Elliott, died on August 5 after finding fame alongside his brother Paul as the Chuckle Brothers.

Comics Billy Pearce and Roy Chubby Brown, the Nolan Sisters, actor John Altman were among around 200 mourners who attended his funeral at the New York Stadium, home of his beloved Rotherham United on Friday.

The crowds applauded as the funeral procession made its way into the stadium and Paul could be seen wiping away the tears when he saw the crowds.

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John Altman arrives at the funeral. Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe.

Billy Pearce said: "It's a sad day but also to think these two lads from Rotherham have done this - brought this many people out - is quite an accolade really. As we say around here, it's a right feather in his cap.

"It's a celebration of a wonderful life. I always think that as a comic you are only as good as how many people you've made laugh and for Paul and Barry it's millions. People absolutely love them."

The hearse had a floral tribute on which spelled out 'Dad' and mourners wore Rotherham United shirts. The duo were both made honorary life presidents of the club in 2007.

Current Millers manager Paul Warne and his assistant Richie Barker attended the funeral along with club captain Richard Woodand midfielder Will Vaulks

The Nolan sisters. Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe.

Will said: "I speak to Paul Chuckle quite a bit because he's a big Rotherham fan and he message me and asked if I would like to come.

"With them both being such local legends - they're probably the most famous two people from Rotherham - the least we can do is show our respects."

Richard said: "We are here to represent the lads and show our respects. Their TV programmes put Rotherham on the map and everybody loved Chucklevision.

"It's nice that they come and support the club and they also promote it and the town too. It's the least we can do."

Roy Chubby Brown arrives at the New York Stadium.

Barbara Gamston, 86, from Masbrough, turned out to pay her respects having first seen the comedy duo in working men's clubs in Rotherham.

She said: "They were proper Yorkshire lads. They used to perform in the clubs when they first started out and me and my friend once spoke to them afterwards because they always used to meet the audience after.

"They were very funny but I don't know they can be fun without one another now. I think we all need to come together to support Paul."

Rotherham United supporters Colin and Sue Horner wore their Millers scarves for the funeral. The couple, from Kimberworth, said they also wanted to show their respects to a 'Rotherham legend'.

Barry and Paul 'Chuckle' Elliott. Pic: PA.

Colin, 69, said: "They put Rotherham on the map for the right reasons because in the programmes they would do their level best to sneak in a mention about the town or Rotherham United.

"The number of celebrities that are here shows how popular they were and nobody has a bad word to say about either of them."

A number of mourners stayed outside the stadium until the procession left to pay their final respects to Barry, who worked alongside his brother Paul on 21 series of Chucklevision between 1987 and 2009.

The funeral procession makes its way to the New York Stadium. Pic: PA.