Did you know that two of Britain’s great TV entertainers hail from the New Forest?

Some interesting heritage from the New Forest Comedy Festival:

Tommy Cooper

Tommy Cooper & New Forest ComedyPerhaps Britain’s greatest natural clown, Tommy Cooper was born in Wales but spent much of his childhood in Langley before working in Hythe as a shipwright.

It’s here he stumbled upon his unique style, combining stand-up with magic tricks gone wrong, with an early performance in the British Power Boat Company canteen.

Tribute act to Tommy Cooper at New Forest Comedy Festival

Cooper’s catchphrase ‘Just Like That’ is the name of a special tribute show featuring as part of the New Forest Comedy Festival, performed by John Hewer.

See it at Forest Arts Centre, New Milton (15 Jun), and Forest Forge Theatre, Ringwood (16 Jun).

Keith Harris

Keith Harris & New Forest Comedy“I wish I could fly but I can’t” is a phrase sure to bring back memories for anyone who remembers primetime TV in the 1980s. But while Orville the Duck lamented his inability to take to the skies, his Lyndhurst-born creator, Keith Harris, became a massive star in light entertainment.

Together with their orangutan friend cuddles, Orville and Harris were also huge in pantomime, delighting thousands of families in Festive shows.

Explore comedy heritage in the Museum of Comedy’s touring exhibition as it visits Forest Arts Centre, Forest Forge Theatre and Hangar Farm Arts Centre. Explore comedy history through dozens of iconic objects and curiosities, including props used by Tommy Cooper himself.

Have a venue and want to host a New Forest Comedy Festival event?

If you have a venue and would like to host a comedy event at New Forest Comedy Festival then please complete the following details and one of our festival organisers will contact you shortly. Thank you!