Bob Mortimer was in such danger before his triple heart bypass surgery that he was granted special permission to marry just hours before the procedure.

The comedian, who is one half of double act Reeves and Mortimer, was told last autumn that his arteries were 95 per cent blocked.

He wed his partner of 22 years, Lisa Matthews, on the morning of the operation.

He said: “I found out on the Thursday that I needed surgery, so I made a will on the Friday.

“I found out I couldn’t get married to Lisa because you have to give 21 days’ notice or something. My consultant said I was incredibly ill, so the registrar in London gave me permission to get married on the Monday.

“So I got married at 9.30am on the Monday, and went to hospital at 10am to have my operation.”

The only guests at the wedding were the couple’s two children, Harry and Tom, so Mortimer’s comedy partner Vic Reeves did not get a chance to be his best man.

After the operation, the initial leg of the comedy duo’s first tour since 1995 was cancelled so Bob could recuperate.

But now the rest of the tour, 25 Years of Reeves & Mortimer: The Poignant Moments, is set to go ahead from January 30.

Bob, 56, said: “I feel fine. We’re doing a little warm-up show on Saturday… If I don’t drop we’ll be fine.”

He added: “I’ve just redone all my tests and they said, if I was a builder or a scaffolder I would be absolutely fine to do it. And we don’t do anything like heavy labour in the show.”

But he does still have to be careful with his diet and heart rate, and will have to monitor his health on stage.

He said: “I’ve got a thing that gives me a constant reading of my heart rate. If it gets over that I’ll just have to walk off.”

The news that he was gravely ill came ‘completely out of the blue’, Bob said.

He went to the doctor with a suspected chest infection, but was advised to have his heart checked out. Tests revealed he was gravely ill.

He said: “It came completely out of the blue. It isn’t something that causes you any pain until it’s done. I think my arteries were 95 per cent blocked. It’s hard to believe, because I felt fine.

“I thought because I’m going on tour, and I’ve got a bit of a chest infection, I’d better go and see the doctor.”