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Billy Connolly Has Lost The Ability To Write Amid Parkinson’s Battle

Jess Hardiman

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Billy Connolly Has Lost The Ability To Write Amid Parkinson’s Battle

Billy Connolly has revealed he is no longer able to write and now walks 'like a drunk man' due to his Parkinson's disease, which he says is 'creeping up' on him and 'never lets go'.

The 78-year-old comedian was diagnosed with the disease in 2013, and retired from live performances five years later - admitting earlier this year that his condition was 'getting worse'.

In a new interview, Connolly said he has 'good days and bad days', and now requires help with walking - having also lost the ability to write.

However, he said that while life feels 'different', it is still 'good'.

Appearing on the latest episode of The Graham Norton Show, which airs tonight on BBC One, Connolly talked about autobiography Windswept & Interesting, explaining that the process of putting pen to paper hadn't been easy.

Connolly said he has 'good days and bad days', joking that he now walks 'like a drunk man'
Connolly said he has 'good days and bad days', joking that he now walks 'like a drunk man'

Speaking from his home in Florida, he said: "I have lost the ability to write, and it breaks my heart as I used to love writing letters to people.

"My writing went down the Swanny and is totally illegible, so I had to find a way to record everything, but then the recorder didn't understand my accent so it kept collapsing and my family would have to sort it - it was a club effort!"

Talking about living with Parkinson's, he continued: "I'm doing okay and have good days and bad days. It's creeping up on me and it never lets go.

"I walk like a drunk man and have to have help. So, life is different, but it is good."

In another recent interview, Connolly slammed 'cancel culture', saying he would never make it as a comedian today as things have 'changed forever' in terms of what can and can't be said in the name of humour.

Billy Connolly performing in 1977. Credit: Alamy
Billy Connolly performing in 1977. Credit: Alamy

Speaking to a New Zealand radio station Newstalk ZB about his memoir, he urged TV executives to be 'braver', saying: "Because of political correctness people have pulled in the horns. I couldn't have started today with the talent I had then.

"There's a show here in America with all Black comedians, men and women, and they are totally ruthless, they are totally without political correctness and they have always got me on the floor howling with laughter.

"There was a comedian who had a series on television and the suits involved were going to take it off at the first commercial break. They have got no bravery."

Watch The Graham Norton Show tonight (Friday 15 October) at 10.35pm on BBC One. It will also be available to stream on BBC iPlayer.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Entertainment, Celebrity, the graham norton show

Jess Hardiman
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