Punch and Judy Jimmy Savile Fringe show man hurt

A PUNCH and Judy performer has been punched in the face for impersonating Jimmy Savile.

The Jimmy Savile puppet. Picture: Complimentary

Gareth Ellis, who is performing at this years Edinburgh Fringe Festival, was walking down a city centre street in the early hours of Wednesday morning when the attack happened.

Mr Ellis, who was with his fellow performer, Rich Rose, were stopped in their tracks by a drunken reveller asking if they were the controversial Jimmy Savile: Punch and Judy stars.

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The duo had hoped to remain anonymous to prevent any trouble but their identities were leaked by show reviewers just days before.

And now the pair believe their safety has been compromised.

The 23 year old said: “We were walking down South College Street when we were approached by a drunk looking man.

“He asked if we were the Savile comedians and when we confirmed that we are he started calling us both sick and saying we must be ‘f***** up in the head’.”

“I asked him if he had seen the show, which he replied ‘of course I haven’t’ and then he punched me in the face. It was all a bit strange really.”

The duo had wanted to keep their identities secret as they knew the show would cause some controversy but Mr Ellis said he never expected to be attacked.

The native Londoner said: “We wanted our identities to be kept secret because although the show is about the people and institutions who were complicit in the Savile scandal, people who don’t see the show will jump to their own conclusions about what the show is.

“This is exactly what has happened and it has compromised our safety as a result.”

But the comedian, who has not reported the matter to police, insists he has not been put off the festival and would like to invite his attacker to come see the show.

He said: “We’re performing at Venue 212, Bob’s Bookshop, so if this guy wants to come along and see what the show is really all about, he would be more than welcome.”

The risque show has been blasted by reviewers however and comedy review site, Chortle has referred to their performance as “an insult to every comic who’s poured their heart and soul into their Edinburgh show that this atrocity shares space in the same programme.”

The controversial act is based loosely around the original script of showing short sketches of a somewhat violent nature.

The popular puppet show, featuring Mr. Punch and his wife, Judy, is often associated with traditional seaside culture.

Jimmy Savile, the shamed BBC broadcaster, was embroiled in a child sex abuse scandal after he died in 2011, when more than 400 allegations came to light.