May 22 2004
Spike finally got a headstone yesterday - complete with the comedian's immortal words: "I told you I was ill."
For more than two years after Spike's death, at the age of 83 in February 2002, his grave was bare except for a small
cherub. But stonesmasons arrived yesterday at St Thomas' church, Winchelsea, East Sussex, and fixed the stone into the ground.
Etched at the base of the 4ft by 2ft stone is Spike's famous line, written in Gaelic: Duirt me leat go raibh me breoite.
And on top is a Celtic cross of New Indian Grey Granite.
Priest, the Venerable Fred George, said: "It was news to me until I saw the workers - I am glad Mr Milligan finally
has a distinguished memorial. He's buried to the west of the churchyard - not far from a Lord, so he's in good company."
Funeral director Jackie Richards said: "It took time for the family to decide on the inscription."
There were reports Spike's family had fallen out over the word - a rift they denied. He was one of Britain's most respected
comics and known to millions as one of The Goons with Peter Sellers and Harry Secombe.