Delighted comedian Lenny Henry revealed his plans to celebrate his home town in a TV series and a film as he was granted the Freedom of Dudley.

The 55-year-old funnyman, a former Blue Coat School pupil, attended a ceremonial dinner at Dudley Town Hall where mayor Coun Alan Finch conferred the honour upon him last night – making him the first person from outside the council or the military to earn the scroll.

The star, who has also helped to raise more than £800m for the needy through his leading role with Comic Relief, was excited to see his name on the Freemen board in the Council House.

He laughed: “Ha, ha – that’s fantastic. I feel very proud. It’s incredibly moving.



 

“I had the freedom of the borough of Dudley when I was a kid, and now it’s been made official!”

Lenny said he was working on Danny And The Human Zoo, a ‘fictional memoir’ about his early teens set in the town, and Nine Nights, a one-off film for the British Film Institute, based in Wolverhampton, Dudley and Brierley Hill.

“We have just as interesting stories here as anywhere else in the world. Dudley is a bubbling place – why wouldn’t you tell stories about that? Dudleians should be proud of who they are.”

He added he wanted to see a community arts facility to inspire young people, and reaffirmed his support for saving an under-threat former theatre building on Castle Hill.

“We’ve got the Hippodrome – why get rid of that?” he said.