Hugh Grant was reason Benny Hill theme got played during Boris Johnson resignation broadcast

Hugh Grant was the reason why the Benny Hill theme music was played over a broadcast about Boris Johnson’s resignation.

On Thursday (7 July), Johnson announced he would step down as prime minister following an onslaught of resignations in protest over his leadership.

He will remain in power until a successor is named, which is expected to be by the time of the Conservative Party conference in October.

During a Sky News broadcast at around 11.30am, that soon went viral, the chipper track “Yakety Sax” could be heard playing while the broadcaster’s reporter kept a straight face as he spoke about the situation.

Twitter users then unearthed a tweet Grant had written hours earlier at approximately 9am: “Morning @snb19692 Glad you have your speakers back. Do you by any chance have the Benny Hill music to hand?”

Grant’s tweet was sent to political activist Steve Bray, from Port Talbot in south Wales, who is known for his musical protests outside the House of Commons in Westminster.

Hugh Grant was behind the viral clip of the Benny Hill theme being played outside parliament (Twitter)
Hugh Grant was behind the viral clip of the Benny Hill theme being played outside parliament (Twitter)

Bray has gained a following in recent years due to his repeated protests against Brexit and the Conservative government on news broadcasts. He revealed in June 2022 that police had removed his amplifiers, and instead decided to perform famous songs with politically themed lyrics.

On Wednesday (6 July), he could be heard interrupting Susanna Reid and Ed Balls during a live broadcast of Good Morning Britain with a rendition of Bay City Rollers’ “Bye Bye Baby”, with the lyrics changed to “bye bye Boris”.

“I suppose if you’re no longer allowed to shout, there are other ways of making your voice heard,” Reid told viewers after realising what she was hearing.

However, it seems Bray evidently had his speakers returned overnight and decided to fulfill Grant’s request after seeing his tweet.

After the broadcast went viral, Bray tweeted: “Just for @HackedOffHugh as requested here today at the media circus… College Green. The Benny Hill theme tune.”

The music was composed by James Q"Spider" Rich and Boots Randolph in 1963, and gained popoularity after comedian Hill used it as the closing theme of his TV series The Benny Hill Show.

The Independent has contacted Grant for comment.

Grant has been praised for his request, with one person branding it “perfection”.

“Your wish, his command,” they added, with another wading in: “Did you see that Hugh Grant made it happen?!”

Writer Tara Dublin wrote: “Hugh Grant is a legend.”

Celebrites have been reacting to Johnson’s resignation – find a compilation of all the comments here.