Belfast Telegraph

Happy Mondays hellraiser saved comic Roy Walker from drowning

By Ivan Little

Belfast comedian Roy Walker was deadly serious yesterday as he revealed that the former wild man of music, Shaun Ryder, saved his life during filming for a new TV reality show.

And yesterday morning the ex-Catchphrase host publicly thanked the Happy Mondays singer for rushing to his rescue in Sardinia.

The unlikely pair, who say they are now friends for life, appeared together on ITV's This Morning show to talk about the new series called 100 Years Younger in 21 Days.

In it, celebrities try to turn back their body clocks, reversing the ageing process without undergoing surgery.

Roy (77) said at one point he and Shaun (55) went paddle-boarding. And that's when things started to go wrong with the board tied to Roy's ankle.

Roy told hosts Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby: "The waves were quite high and the board went out to sea on the first wave and pulled me under.

"I came back up and the board came back like a torpedo. It hit me on the leg and burst it open."

Roy said he was under the water again and saw two hands coming down to save him.

Pointing to hellraiser Shaun, he added: "He saved me.

"He said those reassuring words, 'Stop messing around'."

Shaun joked: "In my imagination, I was all bronzed and good looking in my Speedos and I dived into the water, and I saved Roy.

"It looked like Jaws. There was blood everywhere. I just put my hands in. It was summer and it was too cold for me!"

Roy said that before filming started, the celebrities were scientifically tested to assess how healthy they were. He said he was pleasantly surprised at the findings about his heart, liver, body, physicality and brain.

"I went down from my body age of 77 to 59," added Roy, who was reminded on air by Shaun that he was an ex-paratrooper who used to jump from airplanes.

Roy told This Morning how celebrities on 100 Years Younger had to go on a strict diet and exercise routine, and were subjected to enemas and anti-ageing treatments.

He said they had to wash in their own urine and shampooed their hair in cows' urine.

Another treatment involved snails slithering over their faces.

But he and Shaun confessed they had smuggled in drink during their three weeks in Sardinia.

Roy said he felt "absolutely brilliant" after taking part in the series which will be broadcast over four weeks starting tonight at 9pm.

Other celebrities included EastEnders stars June Brown and Sid Owen, and Sherrie Hewson from the series Benidorm.

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