Die-hard Thunderbirds fans are celebrating the surprise announcement that Gerry Anderson is to headline the upcoming Cromer 60s Festival.

North Norfolk District Council broke the news on Twitter that the creator of the cult 60s TV series was to appear as a Supermarionation puppet at this weekend’s event. “We are so excited about our headline guest.” said council spokesman, Levy Tate. “Mr Anderson promised us as far back as 2011 that he would make an appearance, but his untimely death the following December presented certain logistical problems.”

“We were resigned to the fact that we would have to make do with displaying Thunderbirds memorabilia instead, but local sexton Doug Graves had a brainwave which promised to breathe new life into our plans.”

Dancing Gerry Anderson skeleton
Anderson in rehearsal yesterday

The Herald contacted Mr. Graves who explained, “I was always a huge fan of Anderson’s work. I liked Stingray myself, and the other night I was watching a Marina swimsuit compilation and the idea struck me. I phoned The Pavilion Theatre and their costumes department agreed to knock up some replica uniforms, and Gladys Canby the vicar was only too pleased to lend us a wooden cross left over from the Good Friday bash.”

“All we needed was a crane and half a dozen ropes to get Gerry bouncing around the stage in the style of Scott Tracy.”

The plans have on the whole been met with eager anticipation from fans, and if the event is a success, the council believe it could start a trend in the reanimation of dead celebrities.

“We have already had a call from a senior figure in the Labour Party who are interested in booking Clement Attlee for the upcoming election” said Tate. “That may prove trickier than securing Gerry Anderson’s appearance. Doug is the best in the business when it comes to excavating mud and clay, but the Portland stone and solid marble in Westminster Abbey could make his job a lot harder.”

Sylvia Anderson was unavailable for comment, presumably because she died in 1980.