Tag Archives: st vincent’s

Liz Dawn: Corrie star had ‘courage and a big heart’

Jimmy Cricket paid tribute in his Lancashire Evening Post column to Liz Dawn, who played Vera Duckworth in Coronation Street

Jimmy Cricket has paid a warm tribute to the late Liz Dawn in his  monthly newspaper column.

In the Lancashire Evening Post, Jimmy said Liz, who played Vera Duckworth in Coronation Street for more than 30 years, was “a great actress with a big heart who had the common touch”.

The soap legend died aged 77 in September following a long battle with emphysema, a disease of the lungs that primarily causes shortness of breath.

“It was when she landed the role of a factory worker in Coronation Street that Liz came to everyone’s attention,” recalled famous Northern Irish comedian Jimmy, 72.

“Her natural acting ability won the hearts of viewers and her on-screen relationship with Bill Tarmey as the bickering husband and wife Jack and Vera Duckworth captivated the nation.

“She raised incredible amounts of money for such worthy causes as the Manchester Children’s Hospital, the Genesis Appeal, and the Liz Dawn Cancer Appeal, and was awarded the MBE in the 2000 Queen’s Birthday Honours for her extraordinary fund-raising achievements.”

Jimmy said he first met Leeds-born Liz while working on the QE2, adding she was a  “huge hit”, with large audiences attending her ‘An Audience With Show’ where she talked about her life.

“At the height of her success on Corrie, she did a ‘Christmas Special’ from her home, and I played a postman who delivered her Christmas cards,” reminisced Jimmy.

Liz Dawn (who played Vera Duckworth in Coronation Street) talks to Frankie's friend Liz Creagh after the service. Liz was at both the ordination and the First Mass and Frankie was really thrilled she came to both events

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“However, it was my son who formed a strong friendship with Liz and her husband, Don.

“When our Frank was training for the priesthood, he politely enquired if Liz could put in an appearance at a fund-raising concert which would help to send some young people to Lourdes.

“Without hesitation, Liz not only turned up to that event but became a regular guest artiste at these shows.

“Our Frank, who was a stand-up comedian before he took up his vocation, would introduce Liz and together they would do a hilarious question-and answer-session.

“They both struck up such a rapport that when when Frank was ordained a priest [in 2013], Liz not only turned up at his ordination in Salford Cathedral but at his very first Mass in St Vincent’s Catholic Church in Rochdale [picture above].

“It took great courage and bravery, for by that time emphysema had taken its toll, but there she was… still laughing and joking with her fans after the service and always with her beloved Don pushing her wheelchair.”

Jimmy added: “I was so proud to be at her Requiem Mass at Salford Cathedral where Father Frankie was a concelebrant.

“Liz, you went from rags to riches and gave so much enjoyment and happiness along the way.”

‘Nobody tells a budgie joke like Freddie’

Jimmy Cricket's latest monthly column in the Lancashire Evening Post

Jimmy Cricket relived his wedding day 40 years on in his latest column for the Preston-based Lancashire Evening Post.

The famous entertainer  is headlining Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at the Charter Theatre in Preston – where he made his pantomime debut in 1981 – over the Christmas and New Year period.

When the Lancashire Evening Post contacted Jimmy through his website editor Martin Hamer – former digital editor at the LEP – about the idea of a monthly feature in the run-up to the panto, he thought it was a “very flattering request”.

And his most recent column recalls the happy memories from 1974 – and how he celebrated his ruby anniversary.

Jimmy also talks about the pantomime, which will be directed by Freddie ‘Parrot Face’ Davies who found fame in the 1960s on Opportunity Knocks when it was watched by an astonishing 20 million people.

“Nobody tells a budgie joke like Freddie,” laughs Jimmy in his column.

Renewing wedding vows 40 years on

Jimmy and May Cricket celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary with all the family

It was a family occasion in more ways than one when Jimmy Cricket and his wife May celebrated their ruby wedding anniversary recently.

Jimmy and May Cricket got married at St Joseph’s Catholic church in Bury on 25 September 1974They got married at St Joseph’s Catholic church in Bury on 25 September 1974 (photo right) and, 40 years and three days later, they renewed their vows at St Mary’s, Sabden in East Lancashire (below left).

And the priest who took the Sabden service was none other than the couple’s younger son, Fr Frankie Mulgrew.

Close family (above) attended the service, which was followed by a special celebratory dinner at the nearby Spread Eagle Inn, Sawley in the Ribble Valley.

Jimmy and May Cricket renewed their vows on Saturday 27 September at St Mary’s, Sabden in East LancashireJoining both Jimmy and May for their special day of celebrations were all four of their children: Dale, Frankie, Jamie and Katie.

Also present were daughter-in-law, Philippa, and son-in-law, Lee.

Jimmy and May’s grandchildren made their presence known during the day as both Tristan and Lorelai participated in this joyous occasion.

Special thanks at Fr Frankie’s first Mass

Fr Frankie hugs his dad Jimmy Cricket after dedicating his book, Does God LOL?, to himFather Frankie Mulgrew had a special present for his dad Jimmy Cricket, the famous entertainer, when he celebrated his first Mass as a Roman Catholic priest.

Fr Frankie Mulgrew celebrates his first Mass

Having been ordained at Salford Cathedral the previous day, Fr Frankie said his first Mass at St Vincent’s RC Church in Norden, Rochdale, where has been based for several years.

During the Mass, Fr Frankie – hugging his dad and thanking him for all he has done for him (picture above) – presented him with a special gift as a token of his gratitude… a copy of the book entitled Does God LOL?

Liz Dawn (who played Vera Duckworth in Coronation Street) talks to Frankie's friend Liz Creagh after the service. Liz was at both the ordination and the First Mass and Frankie was really thrilled she came to both eventsFrankie has compiled the book, which develops a theme around whether God has a sense of humour with the help of well-known contributors including Tim Vine, Ricky Tomlinson and Jo Brand.

He dedicated it to his father who said he had no idea this was going to happen.

Among the hundreds of people who attended the packed service at St Vincent’s was Liz Dawn, Lord David Alton, who has been a great guiding light for Frankie Mulgrew, reads the first reading at the Masswho played Vera Duckworth in Coronation Street.

Above, she is pictured talking to another of Frankie’s friends, Liz Creagh, after the service.

Liz Dawn was at both the ordination and the first Mass, and Frankie said he was really thrilled she had attended both events.

Lord David AltonFr Frankie Mulgrew leaves church after saying his first Mass as a Catholic priest, who has been a great guiding light for Frankie, read the first reading at the Mass (above).

A buffet was held after Fr Frankie’s first Mass at St Vincent’s Parish Centre, which is just yards from the church.

The ordination service, on Saturday 13 July, was presided over by the Rt Rev Bishop Terence Brain – Bishop of Salford – and in the presence of the Rt Rev Mark Davis, Bishop of Shrewsbury.

It was a joint ordination as Frankie’s friend, Nathan Horne, was also ordained to the priesthood and so the cathedral was packed with nearly 800 people in attendance.

* All photos courtesy of Graham Sivills from Norden Studio

View more photos from this special occasion here

Fr Frankie Mulgrew celebrates his first Mass