Sir Billy Connolly Says He's 'Near The End' Of His Life But 'Doesn't Fear Death'

Ash Percival

Sir Billy Connolly has said he is “near the end” and life is “slipping away” as he spoke candidly about his health.

The comedian was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2013 while already undergoing surgery for prostate cancer.

In the second part of his BBC documentary series ‘Made In Scotland’, which airs on Friday, Billy claimed he finds it “interesting to see himself slipping away”. 

Sir Billy Connolly

“My life, it’s slipping away and I can feel it and I should,” he said. “I’m 75, I’m near the end. I’m a damn sight nearer the end than I am the beginning. But it doesn’t frighten me.

“It’s an adventure and it is quite interesting to see myself slipping away. As bits slip off and leave me, talents leave and attributes leave. I don’t have the balance I used to have, I don’t have the energy I used to have. I can’t hear the way I used to hear, I can’t see as good as I used to. I can’t remember the way I used to remember.

“And they all came one at a time and they just slipped away, thank you. It is like somebody is in charge of you and they are saying ‘right, I added all these bits when you were a youth, now it is time to subtract’.”

Billy has been living with Parkinson's disease and prostate cancer for five years

According to The Mirror, Billy asked for the programme to stop filming at one point, as he appeared to be struggling with the effects of his Parkinson’s. 

Speaking about the disease, he said: “It takes a certain calm to deal with, and I sometimes don’t have it. I sometimes get angry with it, but that doesn’t last long, I just collapse in laughter.”

Billy’s wife, Pamela Stephenson, was forced to speak out about fears for his health earlier this year, when Billy’s friend Sir Michael Parkinson claimed he had taken a turn for the worse following a “sad and awkward” dinner he shared with Billy in 2016. 

Addressing Michael’s comments in a recent Radio Times interview, Billy revealed he hasn’t spoken to his friend since he made the comments back in August. 

“These Yorkshiremen, I don’t think they apologise much. I wasn’t disappointed, it just made my life a bit difficult,” he said. 

“People feeling sorry for me, I don’t like that. They read about me in the papers and think, ‘Oh, he’s not well.’

“They’re right, but I’m not as bad as they think I am... He should get on with selling funerals and leave me alone.”

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