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Stanley Aldenton My first comedy hero

Stanley Aldenton
Stan Aldenton in Snowdonia, 1975
 
 

Stanley Aldenton was my grandfather. He died when I was a young teenager, so I only knew him as a child, but he was one of those people who makes an indelible impact on you.

'Grandpap', as we called him, was a warm and kind man with an infectious sense of humour. He had the quiet dignity of someone who had lived through the war years (he survived the infamous Coventry Blitz), but with his grandchildren he was also a mischievous clown. At a very early age I remember thinking he and Stan Laurel were the same person.

I have fond memories of our regular woodland walks with a neighbour's dog, Opal, and he would often pick me up from school. He would always have a hard boiled sweet in his pocket and - even better - a new joke.

I remember one joke, about a man in a train carriage peeing out the window and getting stuck, being so mind-bogglingly rude and funny to my eight-year-old ears that it seem to warp my entire view of existence.

So, arguably, this whole Mustard magazine thing is all his fault.

- Alex Musson

Stanley Aldenton