Tom Houghton

It’s hard not to like comedian Tom Houghton. Instantly self-deprecating, loveable, relatable, funny as hell and fearless, it’s no wonder his comedy star is rising.

As well known for growing up in The Tower of London (his father is General the Lord Houghton GCB CBE DL) as his multi-viral, social media posts, starring role in Netflix The Circle, hosting of ‘Very British Problems: Live‘, touring with Milton Jones, or his Bad Manors podcast, he’s about to embark on his biggest UK tour yet.

‘the worst stag do of my life was in Oxford. we spent the night in a Travelodge drinking out of cans, but that’s not oxford’s fault’

Not that comedy is an obvious route for someone so ‘posh and privileged’ as he says himself, and Tom admits it took him a while to find his voice and hone his skills.

Tom Houghton

“You have to be honest, rather than trying to be something you’re not, because the audience can always sniff that out. So yes comedy takes a lot of self analysis,” he explains.

“It also takes a long time to realise you’re funny and work out how to find your own voice. There is no fast lane because when you start out in comedy you base it on yourself and your experiences, but as you get older you can see the bigger picture.

“Which is lucky because I have no transferable skills. I can’t do anything else. And I love comedy. I love the art form and the travelling and going to different places. You are very lucky if you can monetise your passion.”

‘I like Oxford and the gilet count there tends to be high’

About to embark on a five month tour ‘It’s not Ideal‘, running from January – May, which is popping into Oxford’s Glee Club en route, Tom is raring to share his new material and be out on the road again.

“My show this year is about moving on and reinventing yourself. I’ve moved into a new home after a break-up and I’m living on my own, so the new show is all about moving forward. And humour is a great way through that, and a great way to talk about hard subjects.

Tom Houghton

“But the rest of my comedy is very observational and mainly about the British and their idiosyncrasies,” he says.

‘humour is a great way to talk about difficult subjects like break-ups’

As for Oxford, Tom has performed here many times: “They like my angle on the eccentricities of the middle classes, plus the gilet and cashmere jumper count there tends to be high.”

“I also went to the worst stag do of my life in Oxford. The best man hadn’t booked anything so we spent the night in a Travelodge drinking out of cans, although that wasn’t Oxford’s fault,” he accedes.

Tower photo

But with three tours already under his belt, including stints on international stages in Europe and America, he’s now confident in his offering and his right to take centre stage.

“Comedy can just be pure escapism,” he says shrugging, “and ‘It’s not Ideal’ is really good. I’m really proud of it. So I just hope people come along and see it.”

Tom Houghton is at Oxford’s Glee Club on February 29 2024. Book here