Brighton comedy night remembers tragic ‘special talent’ stand-up who died aged 42

Phil Jerrod

Angela Barnes, Carl Donnelly, Joe Foster, Kerry Godliman, Mark Steel, Michael Fabbri, Romesh Ranganathan, Seann Walsh and Tom Allen will all take the stage on Sunday, September 18 at 7:30 p.m.

And as Angela says, each of them was truly a friend of Phil’s—and not just in the showbiz sense of “an airy friend you’ve never met.”

Angela, who lives in Brighton, as does Phil, said: “It will be just over a year since we lost Phil and it’s still very difficult.

“I always expect him to show up or if I see something funny or want to talk about he’s always the first person I want to text.

“Of course you know it’s gone, but your subconscious still takes a while to catch up.

“And of course the night will be sad because of that, but it’s a comedy night and we want it to be a joyful occasion. Raising money for Sarcoma UK is so important and it’s something Phil started to do in his lifetime. You can’t just wallow. You want to do something positive. Phil was very positive.

“He didn’t start doing stand-up until he was 30. I think he was kind of like the eternal student, masters, doctorate and then work for a publisher.

“Honestly, I don’t know why he hasn’t done it before, but I guess you just hit your thirties and realize this isn’t going to last forever and it was something he wanted really do.

“Of course he wasn’t done with acting, but I just think thank God he did, he followed that dream.

“He was something very rare in comedy and I mean 100%. But I’ve never met a person who had a bad word to say about Phil.

“We all have huge egos. We can all hurt our backs in different ways, but I’ve never heard anyone say anything against Phil.

“He never did showboating and he always helped other comedians. He was a very generous performer. I always thought working with him was a collaboration. He was my supporting number but I always felt that it was our show, that we worked together.

“He was really a collaborator.

“You can see that when you watch what he’s done. When you’re doing current affairs shows like Mock The Week, it’s pretty quick and you have to write with someone.

“It’s very difficult to write in isolation, and Phil was brilliant at it.

“He was a really good editor. Sometimes you’d write something but you just couldn’t see the wood for the trees, and Phil was great at looking at something you’re struggling with and saying ‘Why don’t you do it? you not this this and that?’ and then all of a sudden it would work and it would be great.

“It was really a very special talent.”