Our Patrons

We are very lucky here at the Gorleston Pavilion to have a number of Patrons associated with us and the work that we do to keep this building alive.


Jimmy Tarbuck OBE

Tarby, as he is known to millions of TV viewers, is one of the country’s most evergreen performers and a master of light entertainment.

Having successful spent more than 50 years in the notoriously fickle world of show business, Jimmy Tarbuck has hosted numerous television shows, variety shows, chat shows and games shows and his cheeky grin and boy-next-door charms have won him fans far away from his native Liverpool.

However, Tarby is at his best in front of a live audience . In his show he will be sharing anecdotes, demonstrating his quickfire wit and thoroughly entertaining the audience in a show which promises

comedy for grown-ups rather than adult comedy.


During the evening, Tarby will be using photos and video footage to take audiences on a nostalgic

Trip down memory lane with a wealth of hugely funny stories and anecdotes ranging from being at

school and in the same class as John Lennon to playing golf with Bing Crosby.


The Liverpool born comic and entertainer was spotted by the late Val Parnell while working as a

Butlins  Redcoat, and made his TV debut aged 22 on Comedy Bandbox. Soon afterwards he made several guest appearances on Sunday Night Live At The London Palladium for Val Parnell  until he became the resident compere in September 1965 aged just 25 years old.


After this fabulous start to his career, Jimmy was soon in great demand headlining top variety shows, and soon his own TV series. During the 1970s and 1980s, Tarby was rarely off the screen as programmes such as The Jimmy Tarbuck Show, Winner Takes All, Tarby and Friends and the LiveFrom….series attracted millions on TV viewers each week.


Following the decline of variety on television Jimmy is much in demand as one of Britain’s top cabaret artistes and after-dinner speakers, and he regularly hosted many of the top award and business events. When he is not entertaining his corporate, television and theatre audiences he can be found on the golf course or supporting his beloved Liverpool Football Club.


During  his illustrious career, Jimmy Tarbuck, has achieved many awards as both an entertainer and  a charity fundraiser. He has received the top Varity Club of Great Britain award of Show Business Personality of the Year and he has been made an Officer of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem for his charity work. He was also been honoured by an hour-long special of This Is Your Life and in 1994, was awarded the OBE for his services to show business and charity.  Jimmy is President of Diabetes UK.

Desmond Barrit

Desmond Barrit

Olivier Award Winning Stage and Screen Actor

Des is an Olivier Award Winning Stage and Screen Actor, best known for his stage work but can often be found gracing our TV screens, appearing in productions ranging from Agatha Christie's Poirot to his annual outing as the Ghost of Christmas Present in 'A Christmas Carol' alongside Patrick Stewart.

Des has been associated with the Gorleston Pavilion for many years, writing, producing and directing the Theatre's pantomime as well as taking time to appear in productions such as The History Boys to help with our fundraising efforts.

Helen McDermott

Helen McDermott

TV, Radio & Stage

Helen was always destined for a show business career – but it could just as easily have been in music, theatre or even ballet. She had training as a ballet dancer and made her first professional appearance at the age of 12 with the Royal Festival Ballet, followed by summer seasons and pantomime, including a season with Tommy Trinder at Plymouth.

From early 1988 until late 2001 she was one of the regular presenters of Anglia News, and her friendly, easy-going style endeared her to thousands of viewers across Norfolk. Later came A Date with Helen, which took her the length and breadth of the region, as did Boot Sale Challenge.

Helen has been a regular at the Gorleston Pavilion for a number of years working alongside Des Barrit, producing and often starring in the Theatre's annual Pantomime.


Helen Fraser

TV, Film, Radio & Stage

Helen Fraser has appeared in many television series since her TV Debut the early 1960s. Her credits include Z-Cars, Dixon of Dock Green, The Likely Lads, Doctor in the House,The Dustbinmen, On the Buses, Rising Damp, Tales of the Unexpected, Duty Free, One Foot in the Grave and Casualty.

She is very well known for portraying the role of miserable warder Sylvia (BodyBag) Hollamby in her long-running role in the award winning prison drama series Bad Girls.

In 2011 she joined the tour of Calendar Girls. ’Calendar Girls’ which became the most successful play to ever tour the UK and grossed more at the box office than the smash hit film with ticket sales in excess of £25 million.

Helen is appearing on stage at the Gorleston Pavilion with her touring show 'An Evening With Helen Fraser.

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