JIMMY Carr left an audience in Grays aching with laughter after he performed at the Civic Hall.

The 8 Out Of 10 Cats host, who is one of the country's most popular stand up comedians, was in Thurrock trying out new material for his next stand up tour.

On Tuesday night, he performed the first of two shows on Tuesday night.

He returns to the Civic Hall on Tuesday, April 8, for the second test run of his Funny Business tour.

After the show on Tuesday night, some of those lucky enough to get their hands on tickets took to Twitter, with some suggesting Carr had pushed the boundaries.

The comic is renowned for his punchy - and often quite controversial - one liners.

Geoff Walker, who was at the show, said: "Very funny, not for the easily offended, a good night out. great for the Civic Hall and quick service at the bar."

Natalie Chant said: "@jimmycarr was hilarious tonight at Civic Hall Grays! Loved the put down to the guy who challenged him to a fight!"

Margaret Plom ‏said: "Jimmy Carr very good!!!! #boundaries #mental #hilarious"

Ty Morrissey tweeted: "Had a good night seeing Jimmy Carr. Some very brutal jokes."

And Josh Francis tweeted: "Well seeing Jimmy Carr live was pretty damn hilarious! Such a good night."

Carr's official website states his "Funny Business" tour, which starts in April, will be "packed with jokes", "rude and offensive" and "a great night out".

This is the third time Carr has road tested his shows in Thurrock.

The first time was in August 2007, when the Civic Hall had to be evacuated due to a fire breaking out to the right of the stage.

The show was interrupted 15 minutes in when a door to the right side of the stage burst into flames.

Carr returned to the stage 30 minutes later carrying a fire extinguisher.