Sheffield club king Peter Stringfellow blasted as tribute to Stephen Hawking goes badly wrong
Sheffield club king Peter Stringfellow has been blasted on Twitter after an attempted tribute to visionary scientist Stephen Hawking went badly wrong.
The flamboyant city-born star took to social media to post a photo of himself alongside the Brief History Of Time author whose death was announced this morning.
But he described the world-renowned British physicist as "Professor Steve Harking" - and was instantly ridiculed by other Twitter users for the embarrassing slip-up.
Even after fans pointed out the mistake, in a later tweet to BBC presenter Victoria Derbyshire he still referred to Professor Hawking as Professor Steven Harking.
The 77-year-old Stringfellows owner, who began his career in Sheffield, wrote: "Here is my most favourite photo of Professor Steve Harking having dinner with me in my club Stringfellows ( 2003 ish) my all time favourite celebrity !!
"A really inspirational man ..Thank you Professor I will see you in the Cosmos one day as like you I believe we are Stardust."
But Twitter users were not too impressed with the club owner's tribute, which has since gone viral, being retweeted hundreds of times.
John Doole wrote: "Stephen Hawking, you ignoramus," while Sarah Westwood responded: "Your ‘all time favourite celebrity’?! You cannot even spell his entire name correctly!"
Stephen Brooks simply wrote: "Steve Harking...," accompanied by a string of 'crying with laughter emojis' while Gill McHugh poked fun, writing: "Peter Stringvest, its Hawking."
However, after criticism flooded in, he returned to Twitter to tell his 7,900 followers the spelling error was down to his dyslexia.
He wrote: "I’ve told you all before that I’m dyslexic and so cock up occasionally when my speller lets me down !! Now RT (retweet) that if you want !! ..Peter."
Professor Hawking died peacefully at his home in Cambridge in the early hours of Wednesday at the age of 76, his family said.
The British scientist was famed for his work with black holes and relativity, and wrote several popular science books including A Brief History of Time.
At the age of 22, Prof Hawking was given only a few years to live after being diagnosed with a rare form of motor neurone disease.
The illness left him in a wheelchair and largely unable to speak except through a voice synthesiser.
Stringfellow was born in Sheffield in 1940 and held a number of jobs before opening his first club in the city in 1962, gradually attracting a host of big name stars to his venues as his empire grew.
His flagship London club, Stringfellows, opened in the city in 1980 and was a haunt of celebrities, international film stars, TV personalities, rock stars and models.
He later went on to open clubs in the United States.