THE family of the late John Comer – who played cafe-owner Sid in the long-running BBC series Last of the Summer Wine – is to donate £245,000 to a cancer hospice.

John, who was from Stretford, died of throat cancer in 1983 aged 59, but his estate has only recently been finalised following the death of his wife Mollie three years ago.

The couple settled in Blackpool in later life and John was treated at the Trinity Hospice, Blackpool, which is why the family will be handing over a cheque to the hospice on Saturday, April 13.

John first rose to fame in 1959 as part of double act, The Comer Brothers, when he and his younger brother Tony won first prize in the Butlin’s National Talent Contest – receiving a £1,000 and a film contract as a prize.

That year the brothers were then cast in the film I’m Alright Jack, alongside Peter Sellers and Richard Attenborough and in 1961 they starred in groundbreaking kitchen sink drama A Taste of Honey.

Many members of John and Tony’s family starred as extras in the film including their parents and Tony’s wife, Margaret, all receiving £5 for their efforts.

Margaret Comer, said her late husband, who died in December 2011, “chose a different way of life” following the film’s release, choosing a career as a menswear sales rep, while Tony continued in show business and was eventually cast in Last of the Summer Wine in 1973.

Margaret said: “John was a comedian and my husband was a singer and they worked as a double act, they were well known actors.

“John was comical and the instigator, but my husband was comical too in his private life.”

John was so affected by his illness by the time of his final television appearance in 1983, that his voice had to be dubbed in the Last of the Summer Wine Christmas film, Getting Sam Home.