TV star Johnny Vegas makes surprise appearance in Hebburn club

Johnny Vegas poses with Amy Hallett in the Iona Club.
Johnny Vegas poses with Amy Hallett in the Iona Club.

It was a case of Viva Las Vegas for club regulars in Hebburn as a top comedian made a surprise appearance.

TV funnyman Johnny Vegas dropped into the Iona Club, in Station Road, over the weekend.

The star of ITV sitcom Benidorm was in the town as he searched for a suitable location for a future film.

Johnny, 47 – who is also well-known for playing Al in adverts for PG Tips – spent an afternoon in the club as he mixed with regulars.

He enjoyed a day of drinks and bingo, making himself at home before vowing to return next month.

Johnny, from St Helens, Lancashire, later tweeted: “What a top afternoon in the Iona Club, Hebburn.

Johnny Vegas with barmaid Wendy Pick at the Iona Club.

Johnny Vegas with barmaid Wendy Pick at the Iona Club.

“Went location scouting, ended up with top craic, beautiful stout and bingo into the bargain.

“Such a friendly gaff, see you in January lads for the zombie apocalypse, cheers!”

Johnny posed for selfies with those in the club and proved to be a ‘real gentleman’.

Stewardess Ruth Archer was delighted to welcome him for the afternoon.

It was a real surprise to see Johnny – we weren’t expecting it at all

Ruth Archer

She said: “It was a real surprise to see Johnny – we weren’t expecting it at all.

“He said he was looking at locations for a film, and while he was in the area, he just popped in and spent quite a bit of time here.

“He was absolutely lovely and seemed to really enjoy his visit.

“He was a real gentleman.”

Johnny, who is also an actor, has appeared in many films and TV programmes.

He is a regular panellist on shows including Celebrity Juice, 8 Out of 10 Cats and QI, often leaving audiences in stitches of laughter with his surreal humour.

Despite his high-profile status, staff at the Iona Club described him as ‘down to earth’ and friendly as he accommodated all requests for pictures and autographs.

Ruth added: “He just had a drink and had a bit of patter with the locals.

“He took selfies with people, and was very accommodating with all requests.

“He was very down to earth and friendly, and we’d welcome him back any time.

“He even joined in a game of bingo.

“He said to one of the customers that he would be back in January, so we’d be more than happy to see him in again.

“I don’t know whether he found what he was looking for this time.”

It appears, though, that Johnny did not have much luck with the bingo.

He tweeted: “Didn’t have me lucky dabber.”