Sir Billy Connolly steps out for a stroll near his Florida home

Sir Billy Connolly, 78, enjoys a stroll near his Florida home as he prepares to bid farewell to 50 year stand-up career amid Parkinson’s battle

  • He prepared for his withdrawal from the stage – which will be documented in a one-off ITV special – by venturing out for a walk with his pet dog on Sunday 
  • The celebrated Scottish comedian, 78, was seen outside the Florida home he shares with wife Pamela Stephenson little more than a day before farewell show Billy Connolly: It’s Been A Pleasure, airs on December 28th 

He is poised to draw the curtains on an illustrious, decades-spanning stand-up career as he continues his battle with Parkinson’s disease. 

And Sir Billy Connolly prepared for his withdrawal from the stage – which will be documented in a one-off ITV special – by venturing out for a walk with his pet dog on Sunday.   

The celebrated Scottish comedian, 78, was seen outside the Florida home he shares with wife Pamela Stephenson little more than a day before farewell show Billy Connolly: It’s Been A Pleasure, airs on December 28th. 

Main man: Sir Billy Connolly emerged from his Florida home on Sunday as he prepares to bid farewell to his strand-up career in a new one-off ITV special 

In keeping with current safety guidelines Connolly wore a protective face covering as he walked his dog outside the Key West property. 

The comedian still wore his pajama bottoms beneath a black T-shirt while keeping the family pet firmly on its leash as they ventured out onto the street. 

The appearance comes after Connolly insisted that  ‘quitting’ his 50-year stand-up career is ‘the right thing to do’.

Precautions: In keeping with current safety guidelines Connolly wore a protective face covering as he walked his dog outside the Key West property

He told The Mirror: ‘Since the Parkinson’s I’m still the same in many ways, but I don’t think as sharply as I need to to be a stand-up, I’ve done 50 years and that’s plenty. Quitting is the right thing to do.’

Connolly went on to explain that he has ‘no regrets’ or complaints about his incredible career, saying that he has been ‘damn lucky’ in everything that he has achieved.

He continued: ‘I achieved everything I wanted, played everywhere I wanted to… I did it all.’ 

Connolly, referred to as the Big Yin throughout his career, also said his Parkinson’s has given him life-affirming lessons about people, as strangers are always quick to offer him help if he needs it. 

Casual: The comedian still wore his pajama bottoms beneath a black T-shirt while keeping the family pet tied to its leash as they ventured out onto the street

The comedian was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2013 and revealed he was retiring from stand-up comedy earlier this year because of the degenerative disease.

Parkinson’s disease is a condition in which parts of the brain become progressively damaged over many years. 

One-off show Billy Connolly: It’s Been A Pleasure will feature the comedian’s ‘greatest stand-up moments, unseen performance footage and exclusive chats with some of Billy’s biggest famous fans’.

All over: Connolly will draw the curtains on an illustrious, decades-spanning stand-up career in new one-off ITV special Billy Connolly: It’s Been A Pleasure on Monday evening (pictured onstage in the 1980s)

Appearing from his home in Florida, he will be joined by guests including Sir Paul McCartney, Sir Elton John, Sir Lenny Henry, Dustin Hoffman and Russell Brand.

Whoopi Goldberg, Aisling Bea and Sheridan Smith are also set to appear in the documentary to reminisce about Billy’s legendary career on stage.

ITV producers said: ‘Sir Billy Connolly recently announced that he was officially stepping back from live stand-up performance.

Star-studded:  He will be joined by guests including Sir Paul McCartney, Sir Elton John, Sir Lenny Henry, Dustin Hoffman and Russell Brand 

WHAT IS PARKINSON’S DISEASE? 

Parkinson’s disease affects one in 500 people, and around 127,000 people in the UK live with the condition.

Figures also suggest one million Americans also suffer.

It causes muscle stiffness, slowness of movement, tremors, sleep disturbance, chronic fatigue, an impaired quality of life and can lead to severe disability.

It is a progressive neurological condition that destroys cells in the part of the brain that controls movement.

Sufferers are known to have diminished supplies of dopamine because nerve cells that make it have died.

There is currently no cure and no way of stopping the progression of the disease, but hundreds of scientific trials are underway to try and change that.  

‘To mark this major moment in comedy history, this star-studded one-hour special celebrates Billy’s anarchic genius and life-affirming brand of humour.

‘There are also unique new insights from the woman who knows Billy best – his wife and soulmate, Pamela Stephenson.’

‘His A-list fans will share their memories of Billy, send him personal messages and pick their all-time highlights from his glorious comedy catalogue. The man himself will react to their choices and reveal his own favourites.’

‘Billy Connolly: It’s Been A Pleasure is a definitive celebration of an all-time great. An uplifting, emotional and hilarious hour in the company of the legendary Big Yin at his entertaining best. It will make you laugh. It may even make you cry. A fitting send-off for a stand-up megastar.’ 

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