Disabled comedian on stage in a comedy club

Have a laugh this Father’s Day

With Father’s Day just a couple of weeks away, we have the perfect way to treat your dad with this year’s Pun Run Charity Special which is raising funds in aid of Scope. An evening of fun and laughter, the Southbank event will feature some top-rated comedians including Lost Voice Guy, Andy Zaltzman, Felicity Ward and many more, all in the name of charity.

Below we caught up with Bec Hill, founder of Pun Run, who told us a little more about the event, what the audience can expect and why the organisers chose Scope as their charity to support this year.

Can you tell us a bit about Pun Run? How long has it been going on?

Pun Run started in 2011. It was supposed to be a one-off show where myself and other comics could purge all of their pun-based material which never worked in normal comedy clubs. But then the show sold out and I was inundated with requests by audience members wanting another one and comedians wanting a spot. I’ve been putting on Pun Runs throughout the UK, Ireland and Australia ever since!

What can the audience expect at one of your events?

The clue is in the name. We love wordplay and actively encourage it. I found that often, if you’re at a normal comedy club and a comedian does a pun, it doesn’t get the love it deserves. But if you are in a big room full of people who want to hear puns, there is a comradery everyone has. The atmosphere becomes giddy. Our motto is, “A groan is as good as a laugh!”

Why have you chosen to host your next Pun Run in aid of Scope?

We’ve been putting on special Pun Runs in aid of Scope once a year since 2012. We usually do it in Edinburgh, during the Fringe, but due to other commitments, it made more sense to hold it in London this year, at the Udderbelly on Southbank. The co-creator of Pun Run, Gavin Innes, is the brother of ex-Paralympian Caroline Baird. He mentioned how supportive Scope had been with her Cerebral Palsy throughout her life and we thought it was important to show some support in return.

As Scope continues to exist to make this country a place where disabled people have the same opportunities as everyone else, the visibility of disabled ambassadors in the public eye is of great importance as we work towards this objective.

Scope supporter and one of Pun Run’s comedians for this year’s charity special, Lost Voice Guy believes that “the visibility of disabled comedians has improved over the last few years. A lot of this being down to programmes such as The Last Leg and the last Paralympics which raised the profile of disability issues within mainstream media.”

He also adds that “most people’s perceptions of disabled people have changed because of media developments and they don’t feel as awkward any more. I think that has helped disabled comedians a lot. There’s still a long way to go though. It might help if every comedy club wasn’t so inaccessible!”

The Pun Run Charity special is on 19 June at the Southbank Centre, London. Book your place on the Pun Run Charity special today!