SHOWBIZ legend Anita Harris is returning to her home town of Bournemouth this weekend to back a talent contest organised by local teenagers.
The star is urging people to attend the event, which will raise money to help young people with Down’s Syndrome.
“I’m going to be there and support it and it would be lovely if Bournemouth came out and supported all of these youngsters. It would be very exciting,” she said.
Anita will chair the judges of the Scouting For Talent bank holiday family variety show final on Sunday May 4, 7pm, at the Pavilion Theatre, to be compered by local entertainer and CBeebies star Chris Jarvis.
The event comes three days before Anita celebrates the 41st anniversary of her wedding, which drew crowds of fans to Bournemouth register office.
Anita’s family moved to Bournemouth when she was small and she has fond memories of skating at the Westover Ice Rink. It was her skating which led to her being spotted by a talent scout in London and joining a dance troupe which went to Las Vegas.
Sunday’s show is being put on by Team Dragon, a group of local 14-year-olds, and is their entry for Shore Ideas – an entrepreneurial competition run by the YMCA and raising money for good causes.
Anita’s 50-year career includes a string of hit singles, two Carry On films, co-hosting The David Nixon Magic Show on TV and a successful one-woman show.
She said: “I can’t live my life now without thinking of people like Harry Secombe and Clive Dunne and Tommy Cooper and David Nixon, all these wonderful people that I’ve worked with. They sit at my shoulder when I sing. They were my mentors.
“It’s like a good teacher – you never forget them. If I can pass a little bit of that on then I think the magic of theatre can be absolutely wonderful.”
n Anita will be joined in judging the competition by Wave 105 presenter Kate Weston; choreographer and director David Morgan; and the manager of Bournemouth’s former Pier Theatre, Ian Goode. Details are at shoreideas.co.uk/tickets and discounted tickets are available via groupon.co.uk and liveelite.co.uk