Nic Wright

Frog and Bucket turns 21

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Manchester’s legendary Frog and Bucket comedy club is to celebrate its 21st birthday this month.

To mark the occasion, the club will be unveiling a plaque to commemorate all the comics that have ‘died’ on its stage. The plaque, styled after those seen on buildings of historical significance, will be unveiled at The Frog and Bucket on Monday 11 May, at 6pm.

The Frog and Bucket started life in 1994 at the Britainnia pub on Newton Street, with a capacity of 60. Firstly putting on weekend shows, a few months after opening it began hosting an amateur night.

Three years later the club moved to its current premises on Oldham St, upping its capacity to 200. In it 21 years, the club has been home to regular acts such as Peter Kay, Johnny Vegas, Lee Mack, Dave Gorman, Chris Addison, Ross Noble, Lucy Porter, Jack Whitehall and Jason Manford.

Its amateur night saw the first ever gig from John Bishop, who said this week; “Without the Frog and Bucket, I would not be a professional comedian today. It was a great place for me when I started out and remains just as good.”

Now managed by owner Dave Perkin’s daughter Jessica Toomey, the venue hosts four club nights a week, including gong show Beat the Frog, and Laughing Cows’ all female comedy night, as well touring shows, themed and charity nights.

Speaking about his favourite ‘deaths’ at the club, Perkin said: “One time an open spot took to the stage only said ‘hi’, before dropping the mic, running off stage in tears and straight through the front doors. Never to be seen again.”

“I once had to red light a regular act because he was being so rude to a family in the audience,” he said. “I got on stage to apologise but the grandmother still attacked me at the bar.”