Peter Kay makes rare TV appearance on BBC's coronavirus fundraiser

Peter Kay (BBC)
Peter Kay (BBC)

Comedian Peter Kay made his first television appearance in two years on The Big Night In charity fundraiser.

The Phoenix Nights star has kept a low profile in recent years but stepped back into the limelight on the BBC telethon, which is being held by Children In Need and Comic Relief to raise money in the fight against coronavirus.

Read more: Peter Kay making TV comeback

He appeared on screen in a sun hat and licking an ice lolly as he introduced a recreation of his and Tony Christie’s 2005 Amarillo video.

Peter Kay (BBC)
Peter Kay (BBC)

Kay, 46, told fans he had decided it was “the perfect time” to recreate it.

The star had asked people to send in clips of themselves marching along to the song, and the end result featured key workers such as medical staff and firefighters.

The comedian recently said he was moved by the response to his request, posting on Twitter: “I wanted to say a huge heartfelt thanks to everybody who’s took the time to film themselves marching to Amarillo. We’ve literally received thousands.

“Lots of very emotional clips from nurses & care workers & key workers & shoe repairers.”

Fans said it was wonderful to see the star back on the small screen.

One called Kay a “legend” in a post on Twitter while others praised him for always being able to reunite the nation for a laugh.

The comedian has been out of the spotlight since cancelling his last stand up tour three years ago.

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Peter Kay Live: Have Gags, Will Travel was scheduled to begin touring in 2018, but he cancelled all future work, including the tour, in December 2017, citing “unforeseen family circumstances”.

Peter Kay (BBC)
Peter Kay (BBC)

Money raised from The Big Night In is being split between Children In Need and Comic Relief to provide support to projects and programmes across the UK.

Read more: Peter Kay brings back Car Share

The telethon featured a string of presenters including Davina McCall, Lenny Henry and Matt Baker and a host of stars took part, including Dawn French who returned in a Vicar Of Dibley sketch and Miranda Hart, who resurrected her Miranda character.

Cast members from EastEnders appeared and a special tribute to the NHS included an array of Doctor Who Time Lords.