Roy 'Chubby' Brown: Lancaster City Council accused of censorship as thousands sign counter petition to reinstate comedian's show

More than 2,000 people have signed a petition demanding a Roy ‘Chubby’ Brown show be reinstated after it was cancelled by Lancaster City Council – with many accusing the authority of censorship.

The controversial comedian, 77, was due to perform at the council-run Platform theatre in Morecambe in August but the show was cancelled after 59 people signed a petition calling for the council to ban the performance.

Those supporting the petition accused Mr Brown of being “racist, homophobic, and misogynistic”, and Lancaster City Council chief executive Mike Davies was in agreement.

Announcing his decision to ban Mr Brown, he said: “We understand this decision will disappoint some people, but we are proud to be a fair, diverse and inclusive organisation and do not believe Mr Brown’s shows are compatible with these values.”

Roy 'Chubby' Brown's show scheduled for Friday, August 19 at The Platform in Morecambe was axed by Lancaster City Council after it became aware of a petition opposing his visit

The move has led to a furious backlash among some residents, with many – including those who say they don’t personally enjoy Chubby Brown’s humour – taking to social media to accuse the Council of censorship.

"I’m not a fan of this comedian but I also don’t buy into this cancel culture,” said one resident. “Don’t like him don’t buy a ticket. We live in a democracy not a dictatorship.”

Mandy Butterworth said: “It’s terrible taking away people’s choice. I’d never choose to see Chubby Brown as I personally don’t like his material and do find him offensive, my choice for me, but I’d never want to stop someone else from going if it was their choice to do so.”

Lucy Clare agreed, saying: “By being ‘inclusive’ you’ve just ‘excluded the people who want to go to the show? I personally don’t like Chubby Brown therefore I won’t buy a ticket however I like having the choice to decide if I want to go or not. I think it’s time people started fighting back now or where will this stop?”

Mark Davies, chief executive of Lancaster City Council, said the authority is "proud to be a fair, diverse and inclusive organisation and do not believe Mr Brown’s shows are compatible with these values"

“You are not being fair, diverse or inclusive by cancelling him,” said Sue Heartfield. “You are contradicting your values. Censorship is wrong.”

But the Council boss, who was appointed to the £121,800-a-year role in March, is not backing down and has refused to discuss the matter with the press.

When asked about the accusations of censorship, a spokesman for Lancaster City Council said: "We don’t have anything to add to the statement which was provided yesterday.”

Mr Brown’s tour manager Ritchie Hoyle took to the comedian's Facebook page to express his frustration with Lancaster City Council and hit out at ‘snowflake/woke culture’

The Council also declined to explain why it booked the famously offensive comedian to perform at its theatre in the first place.

But others have defended the Council boss and welcomed his decision to axe the show.

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Lizzi Collinge, County Councillor for Lancaster East, said: "I welcome Lancaster City Council's decision to not host Royston Vasey, aka Roy Chubby Brown, at the Platform in Morecambe.

"He uses foul racist and sexist language and uses humour to normalise these racist and sexist ideas, which contribute to people actually feeling unsafe in our community.

"Mr Vasey and his management seem to confuse the right to free speech with the right to be given a stage to speak from.

"This performer is happy to make a living by attacking whole groups of people in his performances but cries foul and acts like a victim when he's challenged on what he says.

"The City Council is well within its rights to withdraw the use of the Platform when a performer so clearly contradicts its values.”