Tuesday 21 November 2017

Jo Brand steps away from writing jokes - to accept an accolade for her work in mental health

Comedienne Jo Brand in the grounds of Canterbury Cathedral, Kent, before receiving an honorary degree from Canterbury Christ Church University
Comedienne Jo Brand in the grounds of Canterbury Cathedral, Kent, before receiving an honorary degree from Canterbury Christ Church University
Comedienne Jo Brand with Rama Thirunamachandran (left), Chancellor of Canterbury Christ Church University in the grounds of Canterbury Cathedral, Kent, before receiving an honorary degree from the university
Comedienne Jo Brand in the grounds of Canterbury Cathedral, Kent, before receiving an honorary degree from Canterbury Christ Church University
Comedienne Jo Brand with Rama Thirunamachandran, Chancellor of Canterbury Christ Church University in the grounds of Canterbury Cathedral, Kent, before receiving an honorary degree from the university

Tom Pugh

Comedian Jo Brand has been awarded an honorary doctorate from a university in Kent.

She was honoured by Canterbury Christ Church University for her work in mental health nursing.

Brand, who worked in psychiatric nursing for 10 years before her comedy career blossomed, accepted the honour at Canterbury Cathedral.

She said: "I'm very flattered and honoured to receive this honorary doctorate and very pleased to come here and accept it, rather than doing what I would normally be doing during this time of the day, which is banging my head on a computer and saying, 'Write a funny joke'.

"I used to be a psychiatric nurse, but I think even in this day and age, when people are becoming much more liberal-thinking than they used to be, people with mental health issues still really suffer from the negative opinion of most of the general public."

University Vice-Chancellor, professor Rama Thirunamachandran, said: "Jo has achieved great success, leading the way for female comediennes.

"However, it is through her public standing, and her work, in raising awareness of mental health issues and challenging the stigma around mental illness where she has achieved true impact."

Press Association

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