Billy Connolly works to 'stay positive' during Parkinson's battle

Billy Connolly.
Billy Connolly.

Billy Connolly goes to work to "stay positive" about his battle with Parkinson's disease.

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies actor was diagnosed with the progressive disease in 2013 - in the same week he was told he had prostate cancer and had two hearing aids fitted - and after the initial shock at receiving the news, he was reminded by his agent that he still had a job to do.

Billy, 73, recalled: "I don't fancy sitting in a church hall on a Wednesday night talking about it... I stay positive just by getting on and going to work. When I was first told, I didn't know what to do about it. I had no intention of retiring. My agent said, 'When am I booking you for a tour? I said, 'I don't know if I can.' He said, 'Of course you can.' He nudged me over the cliff."

Parkinson's is a disease of the nervous system, but it didn't stop the legendary comedian from making the film What We Did On Our Holiday with David Tennant last year, when he also toured Canada and New Zealand before returning to his native Scotland for a run of shows.

Meanwhile, Billy - who has three children with wife Pamela Stephenson and two with his first wife Iris Pressagh - also revealed he isn't afraid of his own death.

The Mrs Brown actor told The Daily Mirror newspaper: "I learnt Buddhist meditation some years ago and to take away fear of death, when you see roadkill, you say to yourself, 'That is the way of all things and it will be the way with me.' All things pass. What is dying? It is just a light going out."

- Bang! Showbiz

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