COMEDIAN and Hollywood actor Russell Brand was the talk of the town in Bury St Edmunds this week.
The kind-hearted star was in town to visit Focus12, the drink and drugs rehabilitation that helped him kick him habit and launch his glittering career.
As part of that he organised a last minute fundraising show at the Theatre Royal on Wednesday with proceeds going to the charity.
Chip Somers who runs Focus12 said it was ‘fantastic’ of Russell.
The theatre performance was only announced on Monday afternoon but word quickly spread via social media sites and the Bury Free Press, and the tickets were all sold out by that evening.
Russell also took time to have a look around the town, to pose for pictures with fans and joined in with a morris dance outside the Angel Hotel where he was rumoured to be staying.
Ella Sullivan and her friends were in the Abbey Gardens when they spotted the star. “It was great meeting him, he was lovely,” she said.
Russell also took time on Tuesday to go meet and apologise to Peter Webb who together with his brother, runs Ernest Webb jewellers in Risbygate Street.
The two men first met 10-years-ago when Peter found Russell climbing over his electronic gate.
“I remember there was a lot of noise. It was the middle of the night and I thought I was being raided and so grabbed my son’s baseball bat,” said Peter.
“I went downstairs, saw him on my gates and told him to get off.
He was a bit awkward and so I said ‘If you don’t get off I am going to stick this bat where the sun doesn’t shine.’”
With that Russell got off and left. It later emerged that he had been trying to cut across Peter’s property get to Chip Somers from Focus12.
“A few months later Chip said to me, remember that young man, well he has got his own TV show. I’ve followed his career ever since,” Peter said.
“He is a very likeable, genuine young man, who seems to appreciate what has been done for him and who wants to give something back,” Peter said.
Russell was snapped by The Sun with a mystery woman, while Scarlet Shoes tweeted that Russell had ‘swaggered past her shop.
See page 10 for Russell’s charity show.