ONLY Fools and Horses star Patrick Murray has blamed his former 20-a-day smoking habit after he was diagnosed with a lung disease.
The 61-year-old, who played Mickey Pearce in the classic BBC sitcom, admits he quit cigarettes four years ago when his daughter was born.
But says that despite giving up, he had to seek medical help while on holiday in Benidorm after suffering breathing problems.
Patrick was diagnosed with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease – the name given to a group of problems which cause breathing difficulties – in 2016.
He told the Daily Star: “I used to be a 20-a-day smoker, but gave it up as soon as my daughter was born four years ago.
“I guess it had already done damage to my lungs. In my day, there were even commercials saying smoking was good for you and people smoked on TV and films.”
His condition was revealed last month when a coach trip charity bash in homage to the show’s iconic 1989 special, The Jolly Boys’ Outing, was cancelled.
The event’s organiser Mark Neale claimed it was Patrick was too ill to make the journey to Margate and had to pull out because he was “having treatment”.
But Patrick has denied that and said he had been told organisers had failed to sell enough of the £30 per person tickets to the trip from Leysdown-On-Sea in Kent.
Patrick – who starred as recurring character Mickey in his trademark trilby from 1983 until 2003 – said: “It is true that I have COPD, but I was still up for the trip in August.”
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The actor intended to share tales from his time on the show as he travelled on an open topped double decker bus with 70 fans, in aid of children’s hospice Demelza.
But he’s now confirmed he won’t be attending the rescheduled trip in October because it was “supposed to be a summer outing”.
In the classic episode, Del Boy – played by Sir David Jason – and Rodney join their pals on a lads day out in Margate.
However their bus blows up and they are forced to spend the night in the town with hilarious consequences.
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