Harry Enfield’s ‘split from wife’ comes weeks after he defended blackface in fiery race row
News of Harry Enfield ‘s reported split from his wife comes just weeks after he was embroiled in a furious race row.
The comedian, 59, hit the news yesterday when it was revealed he has moved out of the home he shared with fashion designer Lucy Lyster, 57, his wife of 23 years.
Although it’s not known when the couple called time on their marriage, it comes at the end of a turbulent summer for the star.
Back in June, Enfield sparked outrage after he appeared on BBC Radio 4 and defended the use of blackface in comedy.
He also used a racial slur during the interview, which shocked listeners of the Today show.
Appearing with host Nick Robinson and writer Ava Vidal, Enfield – who once impersonated Nelson Mandela as a drug dealer, took part in a debate about the use of blackface.
Robinson asked the comedian if he understood that blackface was historically used to ridicule black people.
Enfield replied that he had not intended to any cause offence but insisted he had no regrets.
He said: “I wouldn’t do it now, but I don’t think I regret it…
“Let me tell you, Nick, obviously Al Johnson or GH Elliot, who played the Chocolate Coloured C**n in the 1930s – they perpetuated the myth of the happy negro who was just very happy to sing under the crack of the whip, the American whip or the British imperial bayonet and obviously that’s deeply offensive and always will be.”
Robinson then stepped in to remind Enfield the term he used was offensive and should not be repeated.
“Just to be clear, Harry, because there will be people offended by that term you just used,” Robinson said.
“Well that was his name on stage,” replied Enfield.
The interview sparked an outcry among viewers, with one tweeting: “None of that was OK,” while another called it “Absolutely disgusting”.
Less than two months later, Enfield has found himself back in the news again after his marriage split was revealed.
According to the Daily Mail, he has moved out of the family home in Notting Hill – although it is unclear exactly when the split took place.
A friend of the couple told the publication: “It’s very sad, but Harry is living elsewhere.”
The source added: “He’s being comforted by a female friend. Lucy’s heartbroken.”