Comedy legend Ronnie was a towering talent

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Fylde coast entertainers have paid tribute to comedy legend Ronnie Corbett.

The funnyman, famous for his long partnership with Ronnie Barker, died yesterday at the age of 85.

Today Fleetwood comedian Syd Little, half of the popular 1970s double act Little and Large, said Corbett’s shining career would live on forever.

He said: “We met Ronnie Corbett quite often at the BBC because The Two Ronnies was running at around the same time as Little and Large. He was a very lovely fellow.

“He was a real pro. Ronnie Barker was the comedy actor but Ronnie Corbett was the true stage actor – a true vaudeville.

“He was always talking about work and asking who we were working with at the moment.

“He loved the life and really enjoyed showbusiness, and it showed.”

The Two Ronnies had their big break in 1970 when they landed a show with the BBC.

The two went on to become national treasures with their famous comic sketches, including the ever-popular Fork Handles, where Corbett plays a frustrated shop keeper who believes his customer is asking for ‘four candles’.

Following Barker’s death in 2005, Corbett continued working as a TV comedian until his retirement in 2014.

In 1989 he topped the bill at the North Pier and posed for a Gazette photographer pitting his short stature against the Tower.

Anne Nolan, the eldest member of Blackpool favourites the Nolan Sisters who performed with The Two Ronnies in the 1970s, described Corbett as “a lovely man”.

She said: “We did a whole series with The Two Ronnies and we met him and his wife and daughters.

“He was a lovely man and very funny.

“He was fabulous.

“He was very supportive because it was our first ever summer season with him. He didn’t let the fame go to his head at all. He was very helpful.

“He was one of the good guys in showbusiness.”

Blackpool regular Darren Day said on Twitter: “RIP Ronnie Corbett. True legend. He gave me a pair of his glasses to use for a sketch I was doing on the Royal Variety.”

Syd Little added: “The Two Ronnies made their mark as one of the best double acts in the country next to Morecambe and Wise, and they always will be. Put them together, and they were geniuses.

“His batteries may have run out but his career will live on forever.”

Resort favourite Ken Dodd described Ronnie Corbett as a “brilliant little man” who he “admired greatly” 
and “shall miss very, very much”.

He said: “He excelled in all different branches of show business, he was a brilliant actor, an excellent comedian, a wonderful storyteller.

“His timing was superb.”