ENTERTAINERS from across the Black Country have spoken of their shock and sadness at the death of comedian Tommy Mundon.
The much-loved comic lost his battle with Parkinson’s disease aged 80 on Monday July 21, leaving performers to remember his legacy as the king of Black Country comedy.
Mr Mundon, who lived in all his life in Hasbury, was regarded as a master of observation whose routines captured Black Country people’s way of having a laugh at themselves rather than at the expense of others.
Comedienne and old friend, Marlene Watson, said: “He was one on his own, there will never be another, he was someone special. He will never be forgotten.
“He was the best, the funniest. If Tommy Mundon was on the bill you didn’t have to advertise much – the tickets would be gone.”
Tommy Mundon began his showbiz career telling jokes at fundraising shows for his local Methodist church before moving on to perform in clubs and at Rotary Club dinners.
He played a major part in the success of the Black Country Night Out show and the MWM light entertainment troupe during the 1970’s.
Despite his growing fame the comic, who was also known for drinking nothing stronger than orange juice during his shows, carried on in his full-time job working as a lorry driver for Dudley Council.
He was also a regular charity fundraiser who performed shows to raise cash for many good causes including several mayor’s charity appeals.
Cllr Margaret Aston, Mayor of Dudley, said: “He was a wonderful comic and someone who was always proud of his Black Country roots. He will be missed.”
Tommy Mundon continued to play shows despite being diagnosed with Parkinson’s five years ago and only retired in 2012, when his illness made performing difficult.
Black Country entertainer, Emma Rollason, from Gornal, said: “He was the top man of Black Country comedy. This is the end of an era, he was naturally funny - an all round nice guy.”
Deb Nicholls, from the Fizzogs comedy trio, added: “Black Country people have a unique way with their humour and Tommy was very much that way, he picked up on daftness not smut.”
Ironically Mr Mundon died just a week after the region’s first official national day.
Black Country Festival organiser, Garry Sawers, said: “He was a legend who will go down in Black Country history.”