Take a Walker on the Fylde side

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EVERYONE needs a little laughter in their life.

But for people on the Fylde coast you have to get it from TV.

Unlike the big cities - Manchester, Liverpool, London - there aren’t any comedy clubs in these parts.

The nearest is the Frog and Bucket in Preston, but round here, there’s nowt doing really.

Not for much longer though.

Phil Walker, son of Catchphrase Roy, is launching a monthly comedy night in Lytham and it sounds like it should be good.

Phil has come a long way since starting his career on the holiday park circuit, working for the likes of Butlins and Pontins. He has spent the last couple of decades as a respected stand-up comedian, playing gigs all over Britain and beyond.

He has made a lot of friends on the comedy circuit during that time, and plans to bring some of them to Lytham to ensure the night is a bona fide quality comedy evening as opposed to something just thrown together.

“This is always something I’ve wanted to do locally because I don’t think there has really been anything like it in the area,” said Phil, 44.

“It’s going to be along the lines of what I do every weekend at the Comedy Stores, the Frog and Bucket and Jongleurs (a famous comedy club in London) - and it will be quite nice to have a gig on my own doorstep instead of having to drive 400 miles.”

Phil isn’t lying about that bit. The fella has performed pretty much everywhere - from a scout hut in the Shetlands to a portable cabin on Mount Alice in the Falkland Islands, not to mention entertaining troops in Afghanistan, Kosovo, Iraq and Kuwait.

That’s the life of a stand-up comic - you go where the work is ... which is probably why appearing in Lytham is so appealing.

It also gives Phil a chance to try out new material.

“That’s the way I’m looking at it,” he said. “It’s a good way of working on ideas and seeing what works.

“But the main part of it is just putting on a really good, quality night in this area.

“I’ve got a lot of friends in the comedy world who will come and perform and I also want to bring new talent through.

“Each month I’ll be bringing two new acts from the Manchester area and they’ll get 10 minutes stage-time. You never know, we might unearth the next big thing.”

Phil’s comedy club is called Woofers and will take place at Lytham Cricket Club on the first Thursday of each month.

The first night is March 7 and features Simon Bligh (Perrier Award nominee and former Time Out comedy award winner), Mike Wilkinson (a highly regarded northern comic) and two new comedians.

Phil will compere the night and do stand-up spots in between the acts.

“I’m really looking forward to it and I’m hopeful people in the area will support it,” he said.

“I’ve lived in Lytham for quite a while now so I know plenty of people and the cricket club has got a good membership so I’m hoping they back it too.

“At the end of the day we just want to make people laugh and make sure they have a good night. Hopefully we’ll be able to do that - and if people enjoy it, chances are they’ll come back.”

Call 01253 734137 to reserve a seat for the March 7 show.