COMIC genius Rik Mayall, who died yesterday aged 56, sent a good luck message to Stroud’s Almost Legal Productions as they embarked on their tour of Blackadder in April this year.

Mayall played one of the show's most memorable characters, the sex-obsessed, daring action hero Lord Flashheart.

Stroud actor Chas Burns - a massive Mayall fan - has been playing Flashheart in Almost Legal's tour.

“It’s really sad,” he said, “he’s been one of my favourite TV characters for many years.”

“Now I’m going to have to go to Swindon and to the Cotswold Playhouse and play his character, which will feel very weird.

“I’m going to do a far bigger characterisation and play it a lot more like Rik for these last performances.”

The Almost Legal Production team also received good luck messages for their version of Blackadder from Stephen Fry and Tony Robinson.

The comedians were aware of the Stroud production as they needed to give their permission for the licensing of the show.

Almost Legal’s Blackadder shows in Swindon’s Art Centre on June 27 and 28 and returns to Stroud for a performance at the Cotswold Playhouse on July 4.

For further information visit: Rik Mayall starred in The Young Ones in the 1980s, and went on to appear in Bottom and The New Statesman.

He also appeared at the Cheltenham Literature Festival in 2005 and, as Peeves the Poltergeist, he filmed scenes for Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone at Gloucester Cathedral.

Former Marling School pupil and Horns Road resident Tim McInnerny starred alongside Mayall in Blackadder, as Lord Percy Percy and Captain Darling.