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Bexleyheath funnyman Tom Toal looking to change 'unknown' status with first Edinburgh stand-up

PUBLISHED: 14:06 03 December 2013 | UPDATED: 14:06 03 December 2013

Tom Toal will perform alongside Bob Mills in Dartford on December 8.

Tom Toal will perform alongside Bob Mills in Dartford on December 8.

Ben Macfadyen

Bexleyheath comedian Tom Toal says he's aiming to change his "unknown" status as he prepares for his first solo stand-up show at the Edinburgh Festival.

The 26-year-old has shared the stage with the likes of Noel Fielding and Ardal O’Hanlon since leaving behind his law degree to pursue a career splitting sides.

Having made the move from south to north London, he returns to nearby Dartford on Sunday to play The Runaway Comedy Club at Royal Victoria and Bull Hotel, in Dartford High Street.

“I’m always back to Bexleyheath,” he says. “I did a gig in Tunbridge Wells recently and popped in on the way - my parents and brothers still live there.”

His love of sitcoms such as The Office kick-started an ambition to one day write his own, with other comedians such as Dave Gorman acting as inspiration for a career behind the mic.

The former St Columba’s Catholic Boys’ School student said: “I loved The Office and then Ricky Gervais did stand up, so I was a mini version of him when I started.

“That came out when I was in Year 9 and everyone was doing impressions of him. We did it so much that it became my natural speech pattern, which turned out to be quite dangerous on stage.”

Having ditched jobs working in supermarkets, for charities and behind the scenes on BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing - Tom is hopeful that he can make waves in Edinburgh next summer.

He has performed there four times already, but this will be his first solo effort.

“I’m working on that now,” he said. “I try not to work off a pad and just stick with stuff. To use a statue analogy, if you’re chipping away at a block you can’t expect it to just fall into place straight away.

“I’m known within the comedy circle, but in terms of the world I’m unknown.”

Tom will share the Dartford stage with Bob Mills on Sunday, with tickets £7 each. To book, visit runawaycomedy.co.uk.

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