Burnham-On-Sea, Somerset


April 7, 2005
Burnham-On-Sea RNLI to benefit from raffle of Frankie Howerd's OBE

Frankie Howerd in the classic film Up Pompeii [BBC Photo]The OBE awarded to Frankie Howerd is to be raffled in order to raise money for Burnham-On-Sea RNLI and other charities in the region which were close to the late comic’s heart, it has emerged.

The Up Pompeii star, who died aged 70 in 1992, left the award to his manager Dennis Heymer. Mr Heymer and his adopted son Chris O’Byrne are now raffling the medal to raise money for good causes near his Somerset home.

Mr O’Byrne said this week: “The OBE meant a great deal to Frankie. He would be over the moon to know that it can still do some good for others.”

Mr O’Byrne said the historic house, Wavering Down, will be open to the public on various days during the summer. Fans of the comedian will be able to see the gardens and the house, still kept as it was when Howerd lived there.

Frankie Howerd's grave at St.Gregory's Church, Weare, SomersetMr O’Byrne, 38, said: “We don’t know how much the award will bring but we hope we do the best we can. People still remember Frankie very fondly. He was a deep-thinking man and he brought the best out in many people’s lives.”

The money raised will be used to help a number of local projects, including Burnham-On-Sea's lifeboat, the brain injury charity Headway and St Gregory’s Church in Weare.

The Carry On star, awarded the OBE in 1977, had dedicated his life to charity, said Mr O’Byrne. He added: “The charities he helped were very important to him.”

The house and gardens will be open on April 19, the anniversary of the comic’s death, and various weekends through the summer. The raffle will be drawn on the final day the house is open, September 18. Tickets for the raffle will be sold at Howerd’s former country home in Cross, Somerset.

RELATED LINKS:

Burnham-On-Sea RNLI

Frankie Howerd Tribute Web site

 



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