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Lenny Bruce Barred from Britain

Apr. 8, 1963 - Lenny Bruce, the American nightclub comedian, was refused permission to enter Britain today when he arrived at London Airport. Two hours after landing, he was on his way back to New York. A Home Office spokesman said Mr. Bruce was “not allowed in” because Henry Brooke, the Home Secretary, had decided “it would not have been in the public interest.” The Secretary was reported to have acted because of Mr. Bruce’s recent arrest by the Hollywood police on a charge of possessing narcotics. The language of Mr. Bruce’s act was said not to have been involved in the decision. Mr. Bruce was to have opened an engagement tonight at The Establishment, a nightclub founded as a private membership club to evade censorship of theatrical productions. Nicholas Luard, owner of The Establishment, put a notice outside the club reading: “Lenny Bruce’s appearance has been postponed due to the courtesy of the Right Hon. Henry Brooke.” “Of course Lenny Bruce has been charged with various things, including obsenity,” Mr. Luard said today. “But I think he’s unique, and I’m backed in this opinion by a great number of people. He is highly unusual and highly provocative, and he has something important to say.”


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