A woman from Middleton near Corby has paid tribute to her ‘great friend’ Sir Ken Dodd.
Brought up in Kettering and attending Kingswood Grammar School in Corby, Liz Morris made her mark in her adopted city of Liverpool.
It was in Liverpool where she became a hugely successful fundraiser with the help of the comedian, who died aged 90 yesterday (Sunday).
Liz asked Sir Ken to take on the role of chairman of Alder Hey Children’s Hospital’s 75th birthday appeal, to raise £1.75m to build a hydrotherapy pool for badly burned children, provide parent accommodation and help fund the bereavement counselling centre.
Sir Ken then launched the appeal with his Diddymen and starred in a wonderful variety show at Liverpool’s Empire Theatre.
Liz would collect him in her car from his home in Knotty Ash and take him to various events which always guaranteed much welcome publicity.
Liz, who has since moved back to Northamptonshire, said if they stopped at traffic lights people would surround her car, he was that well-loved.
When she agreed to raise £1m for a much-needed MRI scanner for Arrowe Hospital, once again Sir Ken became chairman of the appeal and put on a show.
It was this show that he brought along ‘a lad who could sing and play the piano’ - Gary Barlow, who went on to great success with Take That.
Just a few months ago Liz received a handwritten letter from Sir Ken who had heard of her own health challenges, another testament to their friendship.
Liz said: “There will never be another like Ken - a true gentleman, charity fundraiser and friend.”