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Last Updated: Thursday, 2 September, 2004, 15:28 GMT 16:28 UK
Illness forces Dibnah to cancel
Fred Dibnah
Fred Dibnah was awarded an MBE in the 2004 Honours list
The TV personality, Fred Dibnah, has pulled out of all public appearances as he battles against cancer.

The former steeplejack was due to appear in a sell-out show at the Palace Theatre in Mansfield on 8 September.

His agent Martin Nazaruk said the MBE was taken ill on Tuesday whilst filming his new series for the BBC.

Theatre staff are contacting around 600 people who bought tickets to offer a refund. Bolton-born Dibnah, 66, was diagnosed with cancer three years ago.

'Amazing raconteur'

Mr Nazaruk said: "Sadly, he is extremely unwell and in a serious condition so will therefore not be continuing with any other public appearances.

"Fred sends his most sincere apologies for any inconvenience caused."

Mansfield Palace Theatre manager Andrew Tucker said: "Fred is an amazing raconteur and he can talk about a variety of subjects from steam engines to chimneys to beautiful old buildings and how they were constructed.

"And he makes something which could be boring if told by somebody else extremely interesting when told by him.

"So the show was really going to be a scaled down version of what he'd do on TV, and talk about his life, which is, I think, amazingly interesting."

Mr Dibnah was awarded the MBE for services to heritage and broadcasting in the 2004 New Years Honours list.

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