King wears Billy’s crown

The Billy Fury Years.
The Billy Fury Years.

A rock ‘n’ roll heartthrob of the ‘50s and ‘60s famed for his hip-swivelling who suffered an untimely death aged just 42.

We could easily be talking about Elvis Presley. But in Britain during those swinging times, Billy Fury had many similarities to The King.

A touring show is dedicated to keeping Fury’s name alive and stops off at the Lancaster Grand this Sunday, March 1.

The Billy Fury Years stars Michael King and his musicians.

King, who bears an uncanny resemblance to the late singer, will perform Fury’s biggest hits including Jealousy, I Will, In Thoughts of You and Halfway to Paradise.

Born Ronald Wycherley in 1940 in Liverpool, Fury was a contemporary of The Beatles.

Although he never had a chart-topping single or album, he spent 332 weeks on the UK charts in the 1960s and had the same number of hit singles as The Fab Four.

In fact, in the 1960s Billy had more top 20 hits in the UK than anyone except The Beatles, Cliff Richard and Elvis Presley.

He was spotted by impresario Larry Parnes as an 18-year-old at the Birkenhead Essoldo, where he sang five of his songs privately to Parnes and Marty Wilde, then was shoved up onto stage to perform unscheduled. He later said he was so nervous his knees were knocking but the crowd thought it was part of the act.

As a child he suffered bouts of rheumatic fever, which weakened his heart and contributed to his early death in 1983.

The show starts at 7.30pm. Tickets cost £18.50, available by calling 01524 64695.