Little Ern. The authorised biography of Ernie Wise. Robert Sellers and James Hogg/ Sidgwick and Jackson. £18.99.
THE man with the short, fat, hairy legs kept generations amused with the ‘plays what he wrote’ and now his own story can be told.
From a tough childhood in Leeds, where he supported his family by dancing, singing and cracking jokes on stage, to being left to fend for himself in London, the book traces his roots in comedy and the music halls.
Then came the fateful meeting with Eric Morecambe and the book describes how the pair became friends but also suffered many setbacks on their road to fame and fortune.
Based on interviews with Ernie’s widow Doreen as well as fellow entertainers, the book fully explores the often-overlooked contribution Ernie made to the act and to comedy in general.