I was a researcher from 82 I think to 88, when I went up to be a producer at Tyne Tees for two years. So I had a gap in my long career at Granada for two years when I went up to join Trish Kinane and then I came back in 1990 to be a producer in entertainment for David Liddiment.
So in those 80s researcher years, what programmes did you work on?
Well the thing about Granada that was really interesting… there were people that sort of went into World in Action and were stuck at World in Action and that’s all they wanted to do. But if you weren’t of that sort of aptitude or attitude, it was a really wonderful place to work. You know, people like yourself and David Liddiment jumped disciplines and it allowed you do to do that, which I don’t think the BBC would have, you know, because it was such a big behemoth – you went in and you never shifted from that discipline. But you know, I did chat shows, I did political conferences – I was Gus Macdonald’s handmaiden as we say through hours and hours of composite motions. You developed a skill, again, to edit a composite motion down to about two lines that could go across a caption, so that was interesting. I worked in entertainment and then I spent two years in the Middle East, very prescient now, doing an Emmy award-winning documentary called Sword of Islam, so I was based in Egypt, Beirut, Tehran. And again, that’s a bygone era, in that you would have any programme that would devote two years of a producer and a number of researchers to do a programme about Islamic fundamentalism that got transmitted for two hours on ITV from 8 o’clock to 10 o’clock. They shifted the schedule for it.