Nominees announced for inaugural comedy award named after Sir Billy Connolly

Comedians including Janey Godley and Paul Black have been shortlisted for an inaugural award named after Sir Billy Connolly.

The Sir Billy Connolly Spirit of Glasgow Award will be presented to the comedian judged to best represent the spirit of the city, with this year’s winner announced at the Glasgow International Comedy Festival’s closing gala on Sunday.

Alongside Godley and Black, the shortlisted nominees are: Scott Agnew, Craig Hill, Kieran Hodgson and Susie McCabe.

Sir Billy said: “Glasgow defies description. Many great men and women have tried to describe its spirit and failed miserably.

“What do you say about a town that dances, sings, plays and jokes differently from everybody else? The winner of this award will have to be a nutter like me.”

An independent panel of judges makes a recommendation to Sir Billy, who ultimately decides the overall winner.

The panel this year comprises comedians Sanjeev Kohli, Greg Hemphill, Elaine C Smith and Karen Dunbar, as well as Glasgow Lord Provost Jacqueline McLaren; Herald editor Catherine Salmond; broadcasters Janice Forsyth and Laura Boyd; radio presenter and podcaster Aarti Joshi; Lost Glasgow historian Norry Wilson; and Channel 4’s Laura Marks.

Festival director Krista MacDonald said: “It is so exciting to be able to announce the nominees for the inaugural Sir Billy Connolly Spirit of Glasgow Award. We are so proud that we have the opportunity to celebrate the spirit of our city shown in the Glasgow International Comedy Festival and in the name of the Big Yin.

“The judges have been wonderful and we are so grateful for their time and help in shortlisting the nominees – the strength of whom really prove that no-one does comedy like Glasgow.”