John Challis, 79, cancels upcoming tour 'due to secret cancer battle'

Only Fools and Horses star John Challis, 79, cancels upcoming tour ‘due to secret cancer battle’

  • The actor’s 30-date tour was due to take place from September until November
  • Challis, 79, is best known for playing for playing Boycie on hit sitcom Only Fools And Horses
  • He was advised ‘days ago’ by a health professional not to proceed with upcoming tour dates 

Only Fools and Horses star John Challis has been forced to cancel his upcoming speaking tour due to ‘a secret cancer battle’, according to reports.

The star, 79, had completed one date of his 30-date tour, however was told by a medical professional to cancel the run altogether.

A statement from tour promoter A Way With Media told The Sun: ‘Due to ill health, John’s tour is cancelled with immediate effect.

Illness: Only Fools and Horses star John Challis, 79, has been forced to cancel his upcoming speaking tour due to ‘a secret cancer battle’, according to reports 

Best known: The actor is best known for his portrayal of Boycie in the much-loved British comedy series Only Fools And Horses 

‘He completed the first show of his present tour, intending to continue. However, he has been advised to cancel further engagements.’

MailOnline has reached out to Challis’ representatives for comment.  

The paper added that Challis’ tour was supposed to run from September until November and that the actor was told just days ago that he should not perform.  

A Way With Media specialises in helping artists tour their books, and the company was behind Challis’ recent spring tour, which ran from August 2020 to May 2021.

A description for the event reads: ‘Enjoy an intimate evening with John Challis, one of the nation’s greatest comedy actors, best known as Boycie in BBC1’s Only Fools and Horses. In this one-off show the national treasure will reveal secrets from the set with stories and anecdotes from his dazzling career.’  

Citizenship: It comes a day after Challis was granted honorary citizenship in Serbia for his portrayal of Boycie in the much-loved British comedy series

It comes a day after Challis was granted honorary citizenship in Serbia for his portrayal of Boycie in the much-loved British comedy series alongside Sir David Jason and Nicholas Lyndhurst. 

The second-hand car dealer, with his staple nasal twang and mocking laugh, has become somewhat of a household name in the country.

The show has always been popular in the Balkan state but it enjoyed a resurgence last year, causing ‘Boycie mania’ to sweep through the country.  

Statement: A statement from tour promoter A Way With Media told The Sun : ‘Due to ill health, John’s tour is cancelled with immediate effect’ (pictured on Only Fools And Horses set in 2001)

During a visit, Challis was mobbed by fans as he met Serbian Ambassador to Britain Aleksandra Joksimovic.

He even made a documentary called Boycie in Belgrade to explore Serbia’s love affair with the show.

Challis told the Mirror: ‘It’s just as popular out there as it is here. A local DJ said it was the only thing that made them smile during their terrible wars.

Famous role: The actor played Boycie – or Terrance Aubrey Boyce – between 1981 and 2009 (pictured in OFAH in 2001)

‘I think people identify with those characters and the stories.

‘They love Boycie, Trigger, Del Boy, Rodney… they have murals of them all over the place.’

Challis was offered honorary Serbian citizenship by the Deputy Mayor of Belgrade, Goran Vesic, following the release of his documentary.

Mr Vesic said: ‘Prime Minister Ana Brnabic said to me she would give the passport to him personally when he comes to Belgrade.’

Challis added: ‘I was just flabbergasted. It’s the greatest thing that’s ever happened to me really.’

Exploration: Challis in Serbia exploring why the Balkan country’s obsession with Only Fools and Horses and his character Boycie

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