Paul Daniels has been forced to cancel a much-anticipated show in Hindley after he was diagnosed with an incurable brain tumour.
The 77-year-old magician who had been taken into hospital for tests, only learned the news last week and has now asked doctors if he can go home to spend time with his family.
His wife and children, which includes his son Paul Jnr who runs the Paul Daniels Magic Party Shop in Mesnes Street, Wigan, have asked to be left alone to spend time with him.
Paul and spouse Debbie McGee, 57, had only recently announced their Intimate Magic Tour and were set to perform at Hindley’s Rose Club on May 21 but following the devastating news, the whole run has been cancelled.
Gaz Ronan, organiser, said: “It is sad news and such a shame.”
Paul’s son, Martin, 52, who is also a magician, flew home from Brazil at the weekend to be with his father. He said: “I just need to get back to be with my dad. The family’s focus is now on being there for Paul and supporting him through this time.”
A statement that appeared on his official website read: “We can confirm that one of our greatest magicians and entertainers of all time, Paul Daniels, has sadly been diagnosed with an incurable brain tumour. On behalf of Paul, Debbie and their families, we thank you for your kind concerns and support at this sad time and ask that their privacy continues to be respected. There will be no further comments at this time.”
His agent later told the Evening Post: “It’s an awful time, He is still with us and we look forward to the time we have with him.”
Those who spent time with Paul in the past few months say there were telling signs that all was not well. A colleague who worked with him on the pantomime revealed that he appeared to be having memory problems during rehearsals.
In an interview last year, Paul hinted that he was having health problems — but refused to let them stop him, He said: “Yes, things suddenly slam you down, but you’ve got to get up and fight again.”
Paul was one of Britain’s biggest TV stars in the 1980s and 1990s, alongside wife and glamorous assistant Debbie McGee.
The couple have been regular visitors to the borough since the shop opened and could often be seen enjoying a meal at Le Frog in Swinley.