Victorian entertainer Ned Corvan was one of the greats of his day.

In the couple of decades before his early death in 1865 Liverpool born but Tyneside-bred Ned was the darling of the early north east music halls.

Now writer and historian Dave Harker needs to find the whereabouts of a self-portrait of Ned for the cover of a book on the entertainer’s life and achievements called Catgut Jim.

“Ned was a superb entertainer”, Dave says. “He was a singer/songwriter, fiddle player, artist and comedian and is probably best known for writing a song originally known as ‘The Cullercoats Fishwife’.”

Dave is due to publish his book soon and hopes to tie-in the launch with the region-wide tour of ‘Mr Corvan’s Music Hall’ in May and June, which guarantees to bring the incredible versatility of one of the north east’s greats to the attention of northern audiences.

Dave continued: “The problem is that I want the book cover to feature a well-known self-portrait of Ned but we are not sure where it is so we can confirm current ownership”.

With the help of fellow Corvan enthusiast and entertainer Keith Gregson, Dave has managed to trace the original painting to Tyneside a few years ago but its current whereabouts remains a mystery.

Dave added: “If anybody knows where the picture of Ned is, please get in touch as soon as possible. I am keen to get on with publication!”