How an air-conditioning mechanic in Sydney Australia became an award winning broadcaster in Britain; Part 147.


Breakfast radio shows work best when they’re based on a true story. It means you have to put as much of your personal life on the air as you’re comfortable with. It helps if you’ve got someone on the air with you who’s going through some interesting things and is happy to share.

In 2003 I presented the Breakfast show on 106 Century FM, the regional station for the East Midlands of England. I worked with a lady called Shirley-Ann. Shirl, was fearless.

She talked on the air about every step of her liposuction and breast augmentation surgery, we even played audio recorded during the procedures. We had a lot of fun too, one morning, to show off her new boobs, Shirl ran topless around the radio station building.

The most personal thing Shirl shared on the radio was her IVF treatment. Her and her husband Tony were desperate to have a baby. It was a great running story and we did a lot with it. For instance, on the morning that we discovered we were on the air at exactly the same time that Tony would be supplying the ‘sample’, we ran a contest to pick the music that would best fit the occasion. On the air, we ended up playing “Yakety Sax” by Boots Randolph, best known as ‘The Benny Hill Theme’ while Tony did what he had to do.

The fun stopped a few months later when the embryo that had originally taken and was doing well, stopped growing.

That’s the thing with true stories, there isn’t always a happy ending.

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