I was born in Drayton, Norfolk and had an unremarkable school experience. My only achievements were playing for the school football team and getting A+ in my music reports.
At the tender age of fifteen I joined the Royal Navy and completed my service in 1979 having served on HMS Ark Royal (Aircraft carrier) and Polaris submarines. After leaving the service I spent a few months running mobile discos but my heart was set on a second career in radio.
Following a number of letters sent to radio stations all over the country begging to be a DJ, a telegram arrived from Radio Forth in Edinburgh inviting me to audition. My first show was “Edinburgh Rock”, a show that I was inadequately prepared for musically, but it was a start. From there I joined the new commercial station in Dundee “Radio Tay” and spent five years presenting a variety of shows and was very involved in raising money for the station appeal. (See below)
A period of about a year was then spent at Northsound Radio (Aberdeen) and travelling Scotland and the North of England providing voice-overs for radio and television. National Radio beckoned and I spent almost five years presenting the “Early Morning Show”, Saturdays and Sundays, on BBC Radio Two. Highlights included meeting my hero John Dunn, presenting “The Ray Moore Show” one Christmas morning and working with the “Children in Need “ programme. (More below)
During the early part of that period (Radio Two) I was also presenting shows at BBC Cambridgeshire, BBC Radio Lincolnshire, The World Service and BBC Three Counties Radio, before eventually settling in Lincolnshire, replacing the then Breakfast Show presenter, John Inverdale.
The next 21 years was spent broadcasting with the BBC in Lincolnshire and continuing with my Radio and TV voice-over work, a spell that included voicing the second series of the TV game show “Dog Eat Dog” with Ulrika Jonsson. Working six days a week for the first fifteen years and a more normal five a week during the final years (Not including the occasional extra shifts) that makes about 6000 BBC radio programmes which is a lot of talking!
After leaving the BBC full time, I taught the Radio Presenters and Producers of the future at the University of Lincoln and ran radio projects in local schools. I retired from the University in August 2017.
I continue to talk to groups all around the county and have used donations from some of those talks to fund village projects including the creation of a new playing field and play park for which I spent a number of years as Chairman.
More recently I have been helping out with Lincoln based community radio station LCR (Lincoln City Radio). They broadcast to the over fifties, with the music being pre-1990's in the main.
Occasional work with the BBC has continued to come my way from local stations in the East Midlands, plus a spell with Smooth Radio. In 2014 I returned to presenting a regular Sunday show on BBC Radio Lincolnshire (1-3PM)
During the last few years I have also presented a Jazz Programme for Royal Brunei Airlines and an Oldies Show for Oman Air so if you ever find yourself on one of their flights, please tune my way.
I have been nominated twice in the Television and Radio Industries Club of Scotland for my “Sunday Challenge’ programme (Radio Tay). This was a programme full of quizzes, phone in competitions and a weekly challenge to do something silly on air.
In 1993 I received an award for a gardening phone-in, which was the result of a programme broadcast with Daphne Ledward (Gardeners Question Time, Radio Four) from her garden,
As the Presenter on air during the evening of the Skegness water crisis I went to the Frank Gillard Awards and picked up a Bronze for BBC Radio Lincolnshire’s coverage of the event.
My biggest honour was to head south to London for the Sony Radio Awards in 1989 after receiving a nomination in the Breakfast Show category, the first ever Sony nomination for BBC Radio Lincolnshire. I was beaten by Chris Tarrant.
I can’t deny that, like most aspiring Radio Presenters, I wanted the thrill of opening shops, presenting charity cheques and declaring fetes and gala days open. The reality is not quite so exciting and I confine myself to talks these days. Being a broadcaster does however give you a profile that means you can help with fundraising and take on some challenges of your own. This is something I have always enjoyed and below are some of the more successful events that I have been involved with and which have raised a considerable amount of money.
BBC Radio Two – Paddled a bathtub along the “Boat race” course for “Children in Need”
Radio Tay – Swimming the mouth of the Tay (About a mile) very cold, but raised hundreds of pounds
Paddled a bathtub from Perth to Dundee – actually quite dangerous but a great fundraiser
Northsound Radio – Paddling a bathtub down the River Dee into Aberdeen, again about 20 miles
BBC Radio Cambridgeshire – Paddled a Cambridge Punt down the River Cam with TV personality Chris Morris.
BBC Radio Lincolnshire – Rowed a rowing boat from Saxilby to Lincoln, cycled around the county, swam in every pool in Lincolnshire in a day. I spent many evenings in Wragby running quizzes, helping the local community to build their first ever swimming pool. My biggest fundraiser was organising the annual Lincolnshire/Humberside golf day with a colleague from BBC Radio Humberside. Always a big job but rewarded with tens of thousands of pounds during the years that it took place.