LEE HURST became a household name thanks to his regular panelist role alongside David Gower on sports quiz comedy They Think It’s All Over.
People still recognize him thanks to the show which also featured Gary Lineker and Jonathan Ross – it’s a staggering 15 years since Lee left.
“The reason I decided to leave was because I felt that by the fourth series the quality had really slid,” he says, frankly admitting what many viewers thought too.
He later returned twice as a guest and for the Comic Relief 24 Hour Panel People Special in 2012 – but spent most of the intervening years in semi-retirement, just acting as resident compere at his own comedy club in London’s east end.
The club was revamped in 2010 after being razed to the ground and replaced by a seven-storey hotel, including a bar and club on the groundfloor.
This led to Lee heading out on the road last year for the first time in more than a decade and he loved it so much he’s lined up a mammoth tour for 2014 – kicking-off in Surrey.
As the title suggests, his Things That Make You Go AAARGH! Tour will see him turning his quick fire wit on things that annoy him – and everybody who comes along.
The subjects will depend on what the audience throws out but rest assured Lee has plenty of material in hand based on what winds him up personally – from global warming to roadworks.
“I’m very sceptical about a lot the stuff they throw at you,” he says of global warming.
“If they can find a way to make money out of it I start to believe it’s not true. World governments create solutions and then they find the problem.”
He is incredulous about carbon credits. “As I understand it, you can buy them from a Third World country that doesn’t pollute as much,” he says. “So in order for somebody like me to watch an HD television all night long I’m basically paying for a guy to sit in a hut in Africa.
“Morally that stinks. Anyway, why are we bothering with any of it here when we’re being told the light’s going to go out unless we go nuclear; we can’t have any more coal fire power stations because they’re poisonous but China is building a coal fire power station a week!” Roadworks are another thing that drives him, ahem, around the bend.
“The local road department here, they put speed bumps in, and two years later they take them back out,” rants Lee.
“They’ll put a roundabout in, they’ll take it back out, they’ll put traffic lights in, they’ll take them back out and put a roundabout back. What’s going on? Is it to keep people in work?”
One thing is for definite though, Lee will have plenty of work in the coming weeks.
Things That Make You Go AAAArgh! Tour kicks-off at the Electric Theatre in Guildford on Friday, January 24.