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Page last updated at 10:17 GMT, Friday, 25 March 2011
South Cumbria hosts Stan Laurel film
Stan Laurel
Stan Laurel was born Arthur Stanley Jefferson in 1890 at Ulverston

A life-long fan of comedy double act Laurel and Hardy is making a film in south Cumbria.

Stan Laurel was born in Argyll Street, Ulverston, in June 1890, the son of a showman, before going on to star in 106 films with his partner Oliver Hardy.

Now Brian Worthington, a filmmaker from Wigan, is shooting the story of Stan's early life.

He has written the script and will bring a small crew to the town on 26 and 27 March, 2011.

Much-loved double act

In a career spanning 31 years, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy become one of the most popular double-acts in show business.

Stan Laurel was born Arthur Stanley Jefferson in Ulverston, the second of five children of theatre owner Arthur Jefferson and actress Margaret Jefferson in a small terraced house.

He lived in the town with his grandparents until he was six before going away to school in County Durham.

At 16 he got his big break on stage, but he had to wait another 14 years before teaming up with Oliver Hardy.

Ulverston has never forgotten its ties to Stan Laurel - he returned to his home town in 1947 when the duo waved to a crowd of fans from the balcony of Coronation Hall.

But for years it was thought Stan was born in North Shields in the north east. Then in 1976 the then mayor of Ulverston, Bill Cubin, discovered his birth certificate proving he was born in Argyll Street.

Bill had collected memorabilia about the duo since childhood - then in 1983 the town opened the Laurel and Hardy Museum.

In 2009, after a decade of fundraising, a bronze statue of Laurel and Hardy was unveiled in Ulverston by Ken Dodd.

Super-fan filming

Now the story of Stan Laurel's early life in Ulverston is being told on film - by Laurel and Hardy super-fan Brian Worthington.

Brian started watching the duo with his granddad when he was aged just five and has carried on ever since.

They're clean, good humour and really good uplifting stories - I don't think they'll ever die out.
Brian Worthington

He only realised how close he lived to Laurel's birthplace in 1989 and has since fallen in love with Ulverston, visiting many times a year.

Brian told BBC Radio Cumbria: "It all started when I was about five when my granddad got me introduced to the Laurel and Hardy films.

Timeless appeal

"No matter who you are, what race you come from, what kind of age-group you are, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy films just appeal to everyone.

"They're clean, good humour and really good uplifting stories - timeless but I don't think they'll ever die out.

"But I don't think there's anything ever been covered about Stan's childhood."

He will be shooting older Victorian scenes for the film in the summer and eventually release it on DVD and enter it into the British Independent Film Awards.

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