Following a brief career in teaching, during which he organised a school trip and got left behind, Paul Mayhew-Archer has spent the last 40 years trying to make us laugh.
He is a multi-award-winning writer whose credits include 'The Vicar of Dibley’, “Mrs Brown’s Boys” and the screen version of “Roald Dahl’s Esio Trot” starring Judi Dench and Dustin Hoffman. He also produced the much loved Radio 4 shows ‘I'm Sorry I haven’t A Clue’ and ‘Old Harry’s Game’, and as a script editor he has worked on everything from ‘Spitting Image’ to ‘Miranda’.
In 2011 he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s. It’s an incurable illness that gets progressively worse and has over 50 symptoms. It is also - as Paul quickly found out - funny.
Since then he’s had some of the best times of his life.
In 2016 he made his first documentary, “Parkinson’s: The funny Side”, for which he won the Grierson Award for Best Documentary Presenter.
In 2017 he started doing stand-up about Parkinson’s, first at the Royal Albert Hall then at The Comedy Store.
In 2018 he took part in his first podcast, sitting next to The Archbishop of Canterbury and performed his first ever One Man show, "Incurable Optimist”, at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
In 2019 following the hugely successful run at Edinburgh, he is now touring the UK.
Paul can scarcely believe his luck. “I'm 66 and I’ve got the chance to travel the country making people laugh. On a bus pass.”
"Incurable Optimist” is an inspiring show about the therapeutic power of comedy and laughter from a man who is not contagious but is well worth catching.