|This article relies on references to primary sources. (February 2011)|
12 February 1970 |
Tunbridge Wells, Kent, England, UK
Born in Tunbridge Wells to Peter and Sally (née Cooper) Appleton, the younger of two sons, Alistair was raised in Hampshire. He earned ten O-levels and three A-levels at St. John's Catholic School. In 1988, he went to Gonville & Caius College at the University of Cambridge, where he studied for a degree in English Literature. At university, he sang in the chapel choir, rowed for his college boat club, and acted in several productions.
On graduating with a 2.1, Appleton left the UK for Poland, where he took to writing poetry and helped to edit a children's anthology, as well as teaching at the University of Gdansk. He later taught English in eastern Germany and worked as a translator and journalist for Deutsche Welle TV. Appleton broke into television with Deutsche Welle, and eventually became the frontman of the channel's youth current-affairs show, Heat.
In 1999, Appleton returned to the UK, where he scored roles on Sky's Hot TV (2000), Five's House Doctor (2000–2003), BBC Two's Rhona (2000), the Travel Channel's Travel On (2001), BBC One's Garden Invaders (2001), Cash in the Attic (2002–2005), BBC Food's Stately Suppers (2005), and had an appearance as himself on the 2006 Doctor Who episode Army of Ghosts. He has also hosted several television specials, including The Proms.
In early January 2007, Appleton appeared in BBC America promos for the fourth series of Cash in the Attic, even though he sat that series out. Since 2007 he has been the presenter on Escape to the Country for BBC Two. He is also the regular host of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment's late night concert series The Night Shift in London's South Bank.
In 2008, Appleton began studying for an MA in psychotherapy alongside his TV commitments which complements his long-standing commitment to Mindfulness meditation which he teaches across the world. Since 2004, he has run an organisation promoting therapeutic mindfulness.
Appleton is openly gay, and came out at university. In an article in Gay Times, however, he admits he only fully accepted his sexuality when he lived in Poland and Germany. In 2000, he converted to Buddhism, and teaches meditation in retreats and classes across the UK - notably, on the Holy Isle, his spiritual home. He is also founding chairman of the Shoreditch Morris Dancing Society. Appleton speaks 4 languages: English, French, German and Brazilian Portuguese as well as a little Polish.
- Official Website of Alistair Appleton
- Do Buddhists Watch Telly? Alistair Appleton's Blog
- Mindsprings Alistair Appleton's Mindfulness and Therapy Site
- Alistair Appleton at the Internet Movie Database