Damien Hirst with his work 'I Am Become Death, Shatterer of Worlds 2006

Damien Hirst to publish autobiography

Controversial artist Damien Hirst is reported to have signed up Rolling Stone Keith Richards' ghost-writer to work on his autobiography.

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Funeral of Rik Mayall takes place in Devon

Some of the biggest names in British comedy came together in a Devon village today for the funeral of Rik Mayall. The pall bearers included his friend Ade Edmondson, who starred with Rik in The Young Ones.

Alan Rickman and Devon-based Peter Richardson, the creator of the Comic Strip, were among those who spoke at the service.

Rik's family asked fans for their 'thoughts and prayers' as his life was remembered. Duncan Sleightholme reports.

Comedians gather to say farewell to Rik Mayall

Dawn French arrives at St George's Church is Dittisham for Rik Mayall's funeral Credit: PA

The funeral of Rik Mayall has taken place at St George's Church in Dittisham in Devon. The star's former colleagues came to say farewell, including Dawn French, Jennifer Saunders, Ade Edmondson, Ben Elton, Ruby Wax, Alan Rickman and Peter Richardson.

The comic and actor, who had a home in Devon, collapsed and died at home in London last week. Today's private funeral is to be followed by a memorial service in September.

A private service was held at St George's Church in Dittisham Credit: PA


Family ask for prayer as they lay Rik Mayall to rest

Rik Mayall's funeral will be held in Devon, where he had a home Credit: PA

Rik Mayall's funeral takes place in Devon this afternoon as his widow Barbara asks fans to "join us in thoughts and prayer at this time".

"Thank you again for all your love and support to all our family, it brings great strength," she said

The comic and actor, who had a home in Devon, collapsed at home in southwest London after what his widow described as an "acute cardiac event".

Mayall shot to fame playing poetry-writing anarchist Rick in The Young Ones and his career also included roles such as Lord Flashheart in Blackadder and the conniving Conservative MP Alan B'Stard in The New Statesman.

West Country (E)

From farm to festival - preparing for the thousands

It's just two weeks until the Glastonbury Festival, when some of the biggest names in music from around the world gather in Somerset under what - we hope - will be sunny skies.

As you might imagine, the site is buzzing with activity as they prepare the farm for the arrival of more than 150,000 people.

Bob Cruwys has been for a look around:


Rik Mayall post-mortem results 'inconclusive'

Comedian and actor Rik Mayall pictured in July 1999. Credit: Matthew Fearn/PA Wire

A post-mortem examination into the death of comedian Rik Mayall have proved inconclusive.

The 56-year-old actor who had a home in Devon received a doctorate at Exeter University in 2008.

He was best known for his role in the sitcoms "The Young Ones" and "Bottom".

He died at his home in London on Tuesday.

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