Can you help make original Aylesbury panto star Gordon’s final stage appearance a memorable one?

Gordon Bishop during one of his many appearances as the pantomime Dame in Aylesbury
Gordon Bishop during one of his many appearances as the pantomime Dame in Aylesbury

The daughter of a much-loved former Aylesbury panto star says she has been overwhelmed by the response as she aims to put on a show to celebrate the life of her ‘incredible’ father.

Grace Bishop said it was ‘a big shock’ when she found out a couple of weeks ago that her dad Gordon’s cancer had spread to his brain.

She explained: “He was first diagnosed in 2010 and told he had three years to live.

“He fought it hard and was in a position where he was comfortable.

“I was at work a couple of weeks ago when I had a message to say he had got worse and when we saw the doctor he said Dad might not live for very long.”

Upon receiving the diagnosis and finding out that he may only have a matter of months to live, the family set about planning ‘a good time’ for Gordon over the next six months.

Gordon, now aged 82, played the role of Fagin during Oliver when the old Aylesbury Civic Centre opened, before playing that same role again 25 years later just before it closed.

He is probably best known in the town for appearing as the pantomime dame in the shows at the Civic Centre.

One of his big wishes was to perform his ‘Max Miller act’ one last time and after posting a message on Facebook asking for support Grace said she had been overwhelmed by the number of people offering to help in any way they could.

She said: “I always knew Dad had a lot of supporters but it has been amazing how many people have come forward, offering either money or services.

“His performances always went down a storm because of his very vibrant personality - loveable but impish at the same time.

“I have great memories of performing with him as Annie when he played Daddy Warbucks in the show here in Aylesbury.”

A variety show is being held at Pendley Court Theatre in Tring on Sunday February 18 to celebrate Gordon’s life.

It will feature performances from musicians, actors, singers and dancers - some amateur and some professional.

Gordon plans to perform his Max Miller act plus alongside his daughter Grace in a piece from Annie during the night.

To find out more visit www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/gordonsbigshow

If you would like to get involved with the show in any way you can e-mail Grace at gracebishop48@yahoo.co.uk.