Phoenix Nights: Where Are They Now?

Phoenix Nights is a much loved sitcom developed by Peter Kay, Dave Spikey and Neil Fitzmaurice, following the fortunes of club owner Brian Potter and his bunch of misfits that helped to run the Phoenix Club. Here, we chart how some of the careers of the cast have developed since the show ended.

Peter Kay – Brian Potter, Max Bygraves & Keith Winston Lard

Obviously, the most famous member of Phoenix Nights and the star of the show is Peter Kay. Since the show ended Peter has gone from strength to strength writing and starring in Max & Paddy’s Road to Nowhere with Paddy McGuinness before returning to stand up with his best selling tour and then a return to TV with the critically acclaimed Car Share. The second series of which is currently airing on BBC One. There have been recent rumours regarding a new series of Max and Paddy but nothing concrete as yet.

Dave Spikey – Jerry ‘St. Clair’ Dignan

Phoenix Nights co-creator Dave Spikey apparently had a bit of a falling out with Peter Kay and the pair reportedly didn’t speak for some time, however they’ve rekindled the friendship in recent years. He’s been continuing to enjoy success on the comedy circuit, popping up in all manner of TV shows perhaps most famously as the team captain on 8 Out of 10 Cats. He’s also appeared on the likes of Countdown and hosted a reworked version of the classic darts show Bullseye.

Neil Fitzmaurice – Ray Von

Neil Fitzmaurice co-wrote Phoenix Nights with Spikey and Kay and since the show his most notable role has been starring as Jeff in Peep Show alongside comedy duo David Mitchell and Robert Webb. He also has done some more serious acting and even delved into the world of stage shows.  Most recently he can be seen as Fergus in Sky’s Mount Pleasant where his co-star is none other than Sally Lindsay who briefly appeared as Tracy Burns in Phoenix Nights.

Patrick McGuinness – Paddy O’Shea

After co-writing and starring in spin-off Max and Paddy with Peter Kay, Paddy travelled around the UK with fellow comedian Rory McGrath to film Channel 5 series Rory and Paddy’s Great British Adventure. The series followed the comedians as they took part in quirky British customs such as cheese rolling, pie eating, bog snorkelling and egg throwing. Since then, he has landed several presenting roles since and is best known for ITV dating show Take Me Out, which he has hosted since 2010. Paddy married model Christine Martin in 2011 and the couple welcomed twins Leo and Penelope two years later. He performed a stand up tour titled Daddy McGuinness, which drew on his experience of first-time fatherhood.

Archie Kelly – Kenny ‘Dalglish’ Senior

Comedian Archie Kelly was one of the familiar faces who popped up in Max & Paddy’s Road to Nowhere, but did you know he was also in the first series of Peter Kay’s Car Share starring as the man with a dog in episode “Man With Dog”. And he also popped up alongside Kay in Cradle to Grave playing Uncle Frank. Elsewhere, he’s been busy doing stand up and playing various taxi drivers on Emmerdale.

Ted Robbins – Den Perry

Phoenix Nights’ resident villain is now best known for his work on children’s TV where he played The Governor in CBBC series The Slammer. As well as former cast members of Phoenix Nights, Neil Fitzmaurice and Sally Lindsay, Ted Robbins can also be found in Sky’s Mount Pleasant. The comedian suffered a tragic collapse whilst on stage during Phoenix Nights live and had to be rushed to hospital however since then he has lost weight and dramatically improved his lifestyle.

Justin Moorhouse – Young Kenny

When he’s not working on his podcast ‘About 30 minutes, No more than 45′, Justin Moorhouse is keeping busy as both a comedian and radio DJ. You also might have spotted him on Coronation Street as Duggie or in prison drama Buried back in the early 2000s.

Sian Gibson – Young Mary

Sian Gibson has recently found fame starring alongside Peter Kay in his current sitcom Car Share where she plays the lead female role of Kayleigh and you not have realised she briefly appears in Phoenix Nights as Holy Mary’s daughter who has a brief fling with Paddy. She also appeared with Peter Kay in his show Britain’s Got the Pop Factor as a band member of Two Up Two Down.

Brian Potter

Played By: Peter Kay

Episodes: 12

Most memorable quote: 

“Sweet Baby Jesus and the Orphans!” – Brian Potter

See more quotes here.

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Brian Potter

Brian Potter is the lead character in Phoenix Nights, played by Peter Kay. Potter was the ex-manager and licensee of the Phoenix Club.

Brian was the manager of a club by the name of the Aquarius which was closed during a Christmas event in 1995 when the water pipes exploded. After the tragic events of the Aquarius, Potter found himself a job as secretary and chair of the committee at the Neptune Club. Some time during the Christmas period of 1999, Potter’s “economising” of the fairy lights was the cause of the club burning down. Some point after, the Phoenix Club was built.

During his career at the Neptune, Brian had a wife by the name of Marion, whose picture he kept in his wallet. The reason for their marriage break-up is unknown as by the time of the Phoenix Club, he is no longer married and looking for love.

During Singles Night, Brian met a lady called Beverley, who soon became his partner. He spent a lot of time with Beverely and even bought a water bed for the two of them to share. Eventually, Beverley revealed that she worked for the DSS and that she was actually at the club investigating claims of fraud. Regardless of her promises with Brian that she truly loved him, a heartbroken Brian ended the relationship.

Brian was renowned in the series for being tight fisted as well as drinking out of a flower vase, since he couldn’t reach spirits. Furthermore, some of the staff used to refer to him as “Ironside”.

Jerry “St Clair” Dignan

Played By: Dave Spikey

Episodes: 12

Most memorable quote: 

“Just rip with me!” –  Jerry St Clair

See more quotes here.

Jerry St Clair
Jerry St Clair

Jerry Dignan, also known as Jerry St. Clair, started off as the main entertainment act at the Phoenix Club. He is a star in the eyes of every pensioner in the Bolton area. During the re-opening of the club in series 2, he became licencee and thus the new owner, taking over from Brian Potter.

After the club was burnt down, Jerry and his club band “Les Alanos” worked in a supermarket where they sung famous songs, which had been rewritten in order to promote certain products. Brian manages to sway Jerry with an offer of him being licencee, due to the authorities thinking Brian’s negligence being the cause of the fire.

As licencee, Jerry made some changes, much to Brian’s horror, including opening a Chinese restaurant in the club and trying to turn it into a themed club. Brian eventually got his name cleared but decided to allow Jerry to continue running the club with him.

Max Bygraves

Played By: Peter Kay

Episodes: 12

Most memorable quote: 

“Get back ya bastard, I’ll break ya legs!” –  Max Bygraves

See more quotes here.

Max Bygraves
Max Bygraves

Maxwell “Max” Bygraves, simply known as Max, was a bouncer at the Phoenix Club, where he worked alongside his friend Paddy. During the Christmas period of 1999, Max and fellow bouncer Paddy were hired by Brian Potter as security at the Neptune Club in Bolton. Not longer after, the club burnt down due to malfunctioning fairy lights. The club was rebuilt and opened as the Phoenix Club.

Max was given a job as a bouncer at the Phoenix Club, where he worked alongside Paddy. He formed a close bond with Paddy and they discussed very intimate things, including love lives and sex.

During their tenure as bouncers, Max was approached by a woman who claimed her husband had been cheating on her. She paid him £8,000 pounds to kill him. Unsure about the whole thing, he approached Paddy for help. Paddy agreed to help and received £1,000, unaware that the money that Max had been given was a lot more. After failing to kill her husband, the two of them were once again approached by the woman, who was now furious. Fearing a hit on their lives, both Max and Paddy fled in the campervan leading to the spin off series Max & Paddy’s Road to Nowhere.

Patrick “Paddy” O’Shea

Played By: Paddy McGuinness

Episodes: 12

Most memorable quote: 

“It’s an illness, Michael Douglas had it.” –  Paddy O’Shea

See more quotes here.

Paddy, left, with fellow bouncer Max.
Paddy, left, with fellow bouncer Max.

Patrick ‘Paddy’ O’Shea, simply known by many as Paddy, was a bouncer at the Phoenix Club, where he worked alongside his friend Max. During the Christmas period of 1999, Paddy and fellow bouncer Max were hired by Brian Potter as security at the Neptune Club in Bolton. Not long after, the club burnt down due to malfunctioning fairy lights. The club was rebuilt and opened as the Phoenix Club.

Paddy’s primary job was bouncer of the Phoenix Club, where he worked alongside Max. He became good friends with Max and they discussed private things with each other, such as their sex lives and, more importantly for Paddy, his balding.

Whilst at the club, Paddy entered a relationship with Mary, the daughter of Holy Mary, despite others saying that she was far too young for him. Due to the pressures of her very religious mum, the relationship ended quite shortly afterwards. Paddy was known for his sexual exploits during his tenure as bouncer and he generally started no-strings relationships with the regulars, some of whom were already in relationships or married, something which Max regularly warned him against.

Towards the end of his time at the club, Max was approached by a woman who claimed her husband had been cheating on her. Unbeknownst to Paddy, the woman paid Max £8,000 to kill him. Paddy was enlisted by Max to help him and was given £1,000 – seemingly half – to help him to kill the woman’s husband. After failing to kill him, the woman approached the two of them at doors of the Phoenix Club where it became evident that Max had ripped them both off.

Due to them not having killed the woman’s husband and having stolen her money, the woman threatened to hire hitmen to kill them. Scared for their lives, Max and Paddy fled in a campervan leading to the spin off series Max and Paddy’s Road to Nowhere.

Ray Von

Played By: Neil Fitzmaurice

Episodes: 12

Most memorable quote: 

“Shabba” –  Ray Von

See more quotes here.

 Ray Von
Ray Von

Ray Von was a DJ and handyman at the Phoenix Club. Ray Von could be a stage name based upon the words “Rave on”, joining the team when he fixed a power cut in the club. Upon finding out that Ray was also a DJ, Brian offered him a job at the club as a general handyman and DJ.

Ray Von had a girlfriend named Tracy Burns. At the start of his career as DJ in the Phoenix Club, Brian was duped into believing that Ray had murdered his girlfriend which was later proved to be untrue. One of his catchphrases was “Shabba!”. He would usually shout this during a disco, a key part of most events. His DJ skills earned him the nickname “The Yorkshire Rapper” by Brian.

Kenny ‘Dalglish’ Senior

Played By: Archie Kelly

Episodes: 12

Most memorable quote: 

“I’m very friendly with the SAS.” –  Kenny ‘Dalglish’ Senior

See more quotes here.

Kenny 'Dalglish' Senior
Kenny ‘Dalglish’ Senior

Kenny ‘Dalglish’ Senior, simply known as Kenny, was a member of staff at the Phoenix Club, although his role is not specified. Kenny Dalglish is actually the name of a British footballer. Kenny was a known liar who often made up elaborate tales of how he met certain celebrities or how he ended up in bizarre or near-impossible situations. Some examples of these would be waking up in bed next to Bonnie Langford or him playing swingball in Pwllheli with Robert De Niro.

Some of his statements are left unanswered, leaving a possibility for them to be true. Such statements would be during a conversation with Keith Lard, in which he refers to his days as a firefighter in Mexico. Keith then challenges him to speak Spanish, after which Kenny speaks fluently. Although no-one heard him speak it, it is left unclear as to whether this story could be true.

Spencer

Played By: Daniel Kitson

Episodes: 5

Most memorable quote: 

“My mum’s a housewife.” –  Spencer

See more quotes here.

Spencer
Spencer

Spencer was a member of the bar staff at the Phoenix Club. He started off as a temporary DJ on the opening night of the Phoenix Club but was sacked shortly afterwards.

He then went up for the position of barman. Despite not performing well during the interview, he was hired by Jerry St. Clair after informing him that his wages would be paid by the DSS.

Spencer was hardworking but naive and a little dim. He worked mainly as a member of the bar staff but also had a terrible period as a DJ. During his interview for the bar job, his previous bar experience included having watched the film Cocktail six times.

Les Campbell

Played By: Toby Foster

Episodes: 12

Most memorable quote: 

“I’m horny!” –  Les Campbell

See more quotes here

Les Campbell
Les Campbell

Les Campbell was the drummer in the band Les Alanos. The band played the backing music for most of the events held at the Phoenix Club. His first known group was with Alan‘s dad, Frank. The duo separated when Frank decided to try his hand at a tribute band, Right Said Frank.

Les later paired up with Frank’s son Alan, who was a talented keyboard player, forming the band Les Alanos, named after the combination of “Les”, “Alan” and “us”. They were hired by Brian Potter to play during many events at the Phoenix Club.

He tried his hand at amateur dramatics. One such performance was a take on the Karate Kid, in which he played a lead role.

Alan Johnson

Played By: Steve Edge

Episodes: 12

Most memorable quote: 

Songlyrics make the best chat up lines, heaven’s missing an angel.” –  Alan

See more quotes here.

 

Alan was the pianist of the band Les Alanos, alongside Les Campbell. The band was employed by Brian Potter to play the music during the cabaret acts at the Phoenix Club. Before becoming a member of the band Les Alanos, Les was in a band with Alan’s father, Frank who left the band to set up a Right Said Fred tribute band by the name of ‘Right Said Frank’. This led to Alan deciding to take up the position of pianist, replacing his father.

After the Phoenix Club was burnt down, Alan and Jerry joined forces and began working in a supermarket. Together, they would sing covers of famous songs, which advertised certain products available in-store. He gave up this job when Brian decided to reopen the Phoenix Club.