Edinburgh Fringe

Raymond Mearns cancels Fringe shows following stroke

Tuesday 8th August 2023, 1:25pm by Ian Wolf

Raymond Mearns and his partner Annie McKeown pictured in hospital after he suffered a stroke. Image shows left to right: Annie McKeown, Raymond Mearns

Raymond Mearns has been forced to cancel his Edinburgh Fringe shows after suffering a stroke.

Mearns, who is in his mid-50s and comes from Glasgow, was performing two shows at this year's festival, Alive in the Hive and the Old Town Comedy Walking Tour, but both shows has had to been cancelled following the medical emergency.

Alive in the Hive had its first performance the previous evening, whilst the Walking Tour was supposed to have begun the next day. Posting on social media yesterday (Monday), he said he hoped to resume shows from Friday (11th August), but has cancelled the remaining runs of both shows following further medical advice.

Not counting the covid-cancelled Fringe festival of 2020, it is the first time Mearns has been forced to cancel Fringe performances since his debut in 2011.

Mearns has since posted a photo of himself in hospital and written that his partner Annie McKeown is currently looking after him. On Facebook he wrote: "Some clarity regarding my situation. I suffered a stroke last Friday morning [5th August] and was admitted to hospital yesterday and upon advice from the doctors I had no option but to cancel this year's show and the comedy walk. Apologies if you bought tickets but these will now be refunded by the Fringe office."

Following the news of the stroke, a GoFundMe fundraising drive has been created to help Mearns recover his lost Fringe revenue. Originally launched with a target of £2,500, at the time of writing it is almost at the £5,000 mark.

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