Nigel Planer is set to join a top West End line up as part of a musical theatre evening celebrating songwriter Lionel Bart.

The event will take place for one night only on July 7 at JW3, the Jewish Community Centre London.

Planer, who famously played Neil in The Young Ones, topped the charts in 1986 when he recorded Bart’s Living Doll with the rest of the BBC comedy’s cast.

The tune was performed with Sir Cliff Richard, who sang the original version in 1959, for Comic Relief.

Sir Cliff, as well as singer Sir Tommy Steele and songwriter Roger Cook, will appear on screen at the event, called Celebrating Lionel Bart, where they will talk about their memories of the songwriter.

Ham & High: Sir Cliff Richard and Sir Tommy Steele will appear on screen at the event Sir Cliff Richard and Sir Tommy Steele will appear on screen at the event (Image: Alan Olley/David Parker)

Bart, who died in 1999 at the age of 68, wrote Steele’s Rock with the Caveman and was the creator of the musical Oliver!

Planer said: “My favourite Lionel song is Be Back Soon, a strange choice I know, but it’s for personal reasons.

“As a contact dad in the 1990s I regularly watched Oliver! with my son, and we’d sing this to each other on parting each weekend. It took the sting out of the situation.”

He added: “Nowadays many of Lionel’s lyrics would be considered questionable, but they are damn good songs.

“There are so many lyrics which wouldn’t get past the sensitivity reader these days, and not least of all Living Doll.

Gonna lock her up in a trunk, so no big hunk, can steal her away from me.

“In our Young Ones recording with Cliff Richard, I tried to make this less dodgy by saying – ‘I feel sorry for the elephant’ – which made sure we were just being silly, and became a bit of a catch phrase.”

Appearing alongside Planer at the concert will be West End stars Debbie Chazen, Jos Slovic, Brady Isaacs Pierce and Liza Sadovy.

They will be singing Bart’s magical songs including - Living Doll and A Handful of Songs, as well as hits from musicals Oliver! and Blitz – plus his biggest flop Twang!

Celebrating Lionel Bart is directed by Adam Lenson and produced by Neil Marcus, with Theo Jamieson as musical director.

The concert starts at 8pm at JW3 (341-345 Finchley Road). Tickets cost £20. Visit to book.