Dorothy Byrne on working on Granada Reports

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Granada Reports… was really, really a good programme, and within a very short number of weeks I was out making 10-minute films myself, and I just thought it was absolutely fantastic, and because we made, in Granada Reports, investigative films. I did a film investigating how bed and breakfasts in Blackpool were taking money from people who were on social security, I did several investigations into housing conditions… it was really a fantastic place to work, with some brilliant people. Tony Wilson was actually a very kind person in my experience, and absolutely brilliant on camera, and he just had ‘it’ – the magic quality. He was really good. I do remember, for the general election, I was sent out with him, and I must have been naïve, because we had to stay up all night for the election, and as the night went on, I got more and more tired, and he became more and more awake. And at about 2am I said to the sound man, “How does he do it? It’s remarkable! Because I’m really flagging, and he’s just got more energy all thee time.” And the sound man laughed and said, “He takes drugs, Dorothy!” So… and I was shocked. I hadn’t come across that before. So yes, there was fantastic journalism that went on. I was a researcher from time to time for Richard and Judy, who were presenters, and they got together while they were on that programme, and I have to say that both of them had… there’s a quality some people have that, when the camera goes on, the camera loves them. And the camera loved them. So I think it was a time of very talented people and really fantastic programming.

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