Johnny’s degree of success

Comedian and TV star Johnny Vegas
Comedian and TV star Johnny Vegas

He’s already got a masters in mirth ... now Johnny Vegas is set to receive an honorary degree in tribute to his impact on comedy.

The funnyman (pictured) will be honoured by academics at Edge Hill University and is set to don his mortar and gown and accept the accolade under his real name, Michael Pennington.

The honour is the latest to come the way of the Thatto Heath comic, who is also the honorary president of a number of local organiations.

Vice-Chancellor Dr John Cater said: “Born in Lancashire, I’m delighted that Michael Pennington is joining the already exciting roster of honorary doctorate recipients at Edge Hill this year. Michael, or Johnny as most will know him, is a talented writer, producer and artist, has links with the University.”

Johnny, who already has an honours degree in ceramics from Middlesex University, shot to fame in the late 90s, winning prize at the Edinburgh Comedy festival and winning critical acclaim for his volatile stand-up performances.

He has also starred in a number of hit TV shows and films, and has recently returned to the cast of the hit comedy Benidorm.

Another six individuals who are to receive honorary degrees from the University include founding singer of Ultravox John Foxx, women’s rights activist Dr Helen Pankhurst and composer Sir Harrison Birtwistle.