Ken Dodd wins Legend of Comedy award

Arthur Smith, Ken Dodd and Geoff Rowe Ken Dodd was presented with his award by fellow comic Arthur Smith (left) and festival founder and director, Geoff Rowe

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Veteran comedian Ken Dodd has been crowned a Legend of Comedy at this year's Leicester Comedy Festival.

The 86-year-old beat competition from Jasper Carrott, Lenny Henry, Nicholas Parsons, Jennifer Saunders and Victoria Wood to take the title.

Dodd said it was "amazing, wonderful and plumptious" to be voted the winner from a list of such "fabulous funny people and good friends".

The award was voted for by festival-goers and Leicester Mercury readers.

Liverpudlian Dodd, who is famous for his feather duster "tickling stick", Diddy Men and marathon stage shows, told the newspaper: "Nothing tickles me more than an award like this."

"This is my 60th year as a professional entertainer and I am thrilled and honoured that the good people of Leicester have voted for me as their winner."

Last year's prize - which was restricted to comedians who had performed at the festival over the past two decades - was won by the late Norman Wisdom.

This year, it was opened up to include any comedian, alive or dead.

"It's great to have an opportunity to recognise the enormous contribution Ken Dodd has made to the UK comedy scene over the past 60 years," Geoff Rowe, founder of the Leicester Comedy Festival, said.

Dodd is currently touring his Happiness show, which runs until June.

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