Adrian Wigley: From Sankeys Club to Blackpool North Pier


Arian Wigley, rest in peace. Image generously supplied by Simon Reeves.

There has been a huge and touching outpouring of sadness and warm-hearted memory since the sad passing of local musician and entertainer Adrian Wigley last weekend.

Adrian was not only a son of Brownhills where he lived all his life, but a record breaker, wit, good guy and friend to the many, many people he met and chatted to on his daily trips to town.

Adrain’s great friend Simon Reeves, who worked with Adrian on the entertainment circuit, yesterday evening asked if I’d post this wonderful tribute to his pal.

I’m happy and honoured to oblige – this is a loyal and beautiful tribute to a good friend.

Simon wrote:

From Sankeys Club on Lichfield Road to Blackpool North Pier, Adrian Wigley performed and entertained all over the country playing his keyboard and singing songs for everyone to enjoy.

Singing and performing were like eating jam to Ade (we will get into that later) but he wasn’t just a solo act, he performed with many talented people such as Chick Bennett, Ronnie Noble and the famous Trevor Rowley, before finishing his entertainment career working with myself, Simon Reeves.

Adrian was a very generous man and would help anyone, which brings me to is charity work – playing keyboard with his nose, tongue and elbow, setting and breaking world records! Adrian also raised funds for hospitals, including Stoke Mandeville and Birmingham Children’s Hospital, work he often achieved working with Reg Morris.

Adrian loved Brownhills and lived in Great Charles Street with his Mom and Dad, dwelling there for 65 years before his passing.

Adrian was loved by many but he had a soft spot for only a few. He adored going round Brownhills and speaking to people, his favourite places being the Star Cafe and Tesco – where he wud buy endless amounts of jam and biscuits!

It was a running joke that Adrian went to Tesco everyday and the staff would know what he was buying. He loved the Star Cafe and his favourite line in there would be ‘Nora – loads of sugar! My sugar levels!’

During Adrian’s final few months he started to get tired a lot and would only go to Brownhills once a day instead of the 3 or 4 times he  usually did. Taken to hospital on 4th January, Adrian was admitted to a ward, where he fell gravely ill and was rushed to intensive care where he finally passed away peacefully and in no pain at 00:50 on Sunday 15th January 2017.

I love you mate.
Sleep tight

Adrian Thomas Wigley
14.10.41 to 15.01.17

Thanks to Simon for such an excellent and emotional tribute. Please, if you have anything to add, any memories of Adrian, please feel free to add them here – comment on this post or mail me: BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com. Thanks.

My condolences, and those of the readers and the wider community to Simon and all who loved and knew Adrian.


Arian Wigley, there’s bound to be some good entertainment up there now. Image generously supplied by Simon Reeves.

This entry was posted in News. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Adrian Wigley: From Sankeys Club to Blackpool North Pier

  1. Sean Yates says:

    I was a friend of Chick Bennett (another “character”,unfortunately now also deceased), and my wife and I were lucky enough to have seen Adrian and Chick play gigs in and around the Cannock area in the early 80’s.The first time we saw Adrian play the organ with his tongue we were amazed, and for him to use this and all his other talents to raise so much money for charity was fantastic. R.I.P. Adrian.

  2. Joanne says:

    I am so sorry to hear about Ade. I went to Ade’s house many times when I still lived in Brownhills. I’d gone with him a few times to various places when he was entertaining. Even though I left B’hills in 95, I saw him quite a few times when I came back to B’hills to become my Dad’s carer in 2013. I saw him a week or two before Christmas.We’d never forgotten each other. He will be missed.

  3. sandra says:

    An amazing .caring .compasionate man .R.I.P Ade xx

  4. aerreg says:

    the passing on of adrian has revived many happy childhood days for me in the old avenues it was like a mini town built by cornish tin miners as i read your wonderful blog names from my childhood come back first avenue for example BARRATT ANDERSON POOLE SPENDLOVE FOSTER GILLIAN LUKE WIGGLEY ANSLOW we gathered as a happy gang playing good old street games yes the avenue roots produced some fine family trees as old brownhills did it produced mucisions sportsmen leaders of society and proud bostin miners thanks for the memory excuse my spelling hope i havnt bored you but memories are precious as were my days up the avenues god bless

  5. so sorry to hear the news I remember him in Ogley club playing his organ R.I.P.

  6. Robert shepherd says:

    Rip mate

  7. Rose Burnell says:

    I’m really sad to hear about this. He always talked to me when I saw him in Tesco – he didn’t know me but always spoke to me and many other people as if we were long lost friends. I didn’t even know that he was a musician and only heard him play on a video that was shared this week after he had passed away. If more people followed his example and were kind and brave enough to smile and chat to each other in Brownhills what a lovely place it would be! RIP Adrian xx

  8. leeky54 says:

    Adrian Wigley, life long friend, Always able to give me the latest Villa result on Saturday if we met in Tesco. A true Legend who raised loads for charities with his crazy stunts. Gonna be missed
    R.I.P Ade

  9. Emmilie rose says:

    the man who did the entertainment with adrian was my father Jhon harris HIS BEST MATE for years and years who SADLY was not mentioned Jhon stuck by Ade till the end MY DAD was all Adrian had sadly still not mentioned JHON WAS ADS only loyal true friend, from your grandaughters and good friend jhon LOVE U PAL x

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.