Twitter users have flooded Reverend Richard Coles with heartwarming birthday messages to help lift the star’s mood.
Coles, 58, has had a tough few months after his husband David Coles died in December following a long illness.
On Thursday morning the former Strictly Come Dancing contestant shared a photo of his birthday breakfast on social media.
“It’s my birthday: Fifty-eight, widowed, lonely, locked-down, straitened and fat - but NO ONE can take my kippers,” he wrote.
It’s my birthday: fifty-eight, widowed, lonely, locked-down, straitened, and fat - but NO ONE can take my kippers. pic.twitter.com/D6WWwpaWIM— Richard Coles (@RevRichardColes)March 26, 2020
Coles, who first rose to fame as one half of 80s pop duo The Communards, was then inundated with celebratory messages on Twitter as the phrase “Happy birthday Richard” began to trend.
Famous faces and fans alike sent cheerful posts to mark Coles’ special day, with Rylan Clark-Neal writing: “Happy birthday Richard hope you have a lovely day @RevRichardColes x.”
Happy birthday lovely. Let’s meet up on a train when this is all over xxx— Susan Calman (@SusanCalman)March 26, 2020
Happy Birthday you lovely man xx— Tracey Thorn (@tracey_thorn)March 26, 2020
Happy birthday? X— Bruno Tonioli (@BrunoTonioli)March 26, 2020
Susan Calman, who appeared on Strictly Come Dancing in 2017 alongside the Reverend, said: “Happy birthday lovely. Let’s meet up on a train when this is all over.”
Broadcaster James O’Brien added: “Happy Birthday Richard. You bring comfort & happiness to many, many people & we all hope you find a bit of both today.”
And no one ever shall take your kippers. Big hugs, my brother. And happy birthday. xx— Samira Ahmed (@SamiraAhmedUK)March 26, 2020
Happy Birthday, Richard! 😘— Mark Gatiss (@Markgatiss)March 26, 2020
BBC Front Row presenter Samira Ahmed replied: “And no one shall take your kippers. Big hugs, my brother. And happy birthday xx.”
Happy Birthday, Richard - I hope that the coming year brings you every good thing.— Paul Chahidi (@PaulChahidi)March 26, 2020
Paul Chahidi, who is best known for playing the vicar in BBC Three mockumentary This Country, wrote: “Happy Birthday, Richard - I hope the coming year brings you every good thing.”
In a candid interview with The Guardian earlier this month, Coles opened up about struggling to face the future without his partner.
“I’ve had to subtract David from the future and that has taken all the future with it,” he told the paper.
“It’s a bit blank. I think: ‘What the f*** am I going to do? Play the accordion and go to bed at 10 past six, I guess. Of course, it’s not the end of my life.
“But it feels like it’s over sometimes.”