by Gillian McDade
COOKSTOWN’S own family-friendly funny man has been presented with an accolade in honour of putting his hometown on the laughter map.
Jimmy Cricket who wears a funny hat and his trademark wellies on the wrong feet, was presented with a plaque by Cookstown District Council chairman Tony Quinn last Thursday night at the Clubsound event in the Burnavon at which he was a special guest.
Jimmy, whose best-known catchphrases include ‘Come closer!’ and ‘...and there’s more!” was touched by the gesture in recognition of his achievements.
Jimmy was born James Mulgrew in 1945 in Cookstown, and in 1972 he went on to work at holiday camps in England.
The former Butlin’s Red Coat won London Weekend Television’s talent contest, ‘Search For A Star’, and was later given his own series on Central Television in the mid-1980s called ‘And There’s More.’
Cookstown District Council chairman Tony Quinn said it was his pleasure to present the accolade and spoke with fondness about his family’s long friendship with the comedian.
“Jimmy, you will remember your next door neighbours on the hill, but don’t know that they were in fact my aunt and uncle. On your last visit you very kindly visited my aunt to catch up on all the local news and she always spoke highly of you,” said Cllr Quinn.
“Indeed, you have been an ambassador for Cookstown at home and abroad throughout your highly successful comedy career. Celebrating the good old days of the music hall and variety, your family friendly comedy was the forerunner for many of today’s ‘Irish mammy’ routines performed by your contemporaries, and appearances on the Royal Variety Show and on BBC’s ‘This Is Your Life’ with Eamonn Andrews show how highly regarded you are in the industry,” he added.
The council chairman wished Jimmy continued success for many years to come which was greeted by a round of applause.