Express & Star

Wolverhampton Grand at 125: Comedy royalty clamour on stage

The Royal Family – that's comedy royalty – paid a visit to Wolverhampton and made their entrance Elizabethan-style.

Comedian Dougie Parker (centre) is 'knighted' by Black Country 'Queen' Mary Ellen with the aid of Yeoman Bill

The VIP appearance took place at the city's Grand Theatre in June 1989.

The Royals, a group of much loved Black Country performers, staged an evening of 'mid-summer madness' at the Lichfield Street venue.

Among the artistes taking part were Tommy Mundon, John Raven, Dolly Allen, Daniel Raven, Doug Parker and Cosmotheka.

The show, otherwise known as The Court of King Cedric, was described as the first live 16th century soap opera in the country.

It was a golden age for Black Country humour and sadly the leading lights of that night's entertainment have now passed on.

Dolly, who was 84 when she died in 1990, is still fondly remembered by thousands of fans. A plaque to 'The Queen of the Black Country', as she was known, was unveiled at Brierley Hill Civic Hall where she made so many people laugh.

Tommy Mundon died five years ago after a long battle against Parkinson's disease. The 80-year-old funnyman, from Halesowen, was a regular on the comedy circuit for 50 years and a campaign has been launched for a blue plaque in his honour.

The image is reproduced here as the Express & Star joins with the Grand to mark the theatre’s milestone 125th anniversary this year.

* If you have memories or pictures, email or write to 125 Memories Project, Wolverhampton Grand Theatre, WV1 1DE.

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