Charles Mitchel

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For other people named Charles Mitchel, see Charles Mitchel (disambiguation).
Charles Mitchel
RTÉ News - Charles Mitchel Last Broadcast 1984.jpg
Mitchel on his last news broadcast in 1984
Born Charles Mitchel
(1920-11-08)8 November 1920
Dublin, Ireland
Died 18 August 1996(1996-08-18) (aged 75)
Dublin, Ireland
Education Trinity College Dublin
Occupation Actor and newscaster
Years active 1961–1984
Notable credit(s) Nine O'Clock News
Spouse(s) Betty Mitchel
Children Nicholas Mitchel
Susan Mitchel

Charles Gerald Mitchel (8 November 1920 – 18 August 1996) was an Irish actor and broadcaster best known as a newsreader for the RTÉ News from 1961 until 1984. He was the first person to read the news on Telefís Éireann.

Early life[edit]

Born in Dublin, Mitchel was educated at Clongowes Wood College boarding school in Clane, County Kildare.[1] Mitchel subsequently attended Trinity College Dublin where he studied forestry. It was here that his interest in acting developed and he quickly became a leading member of the Trinity Players. Mitchel left Trinity in 1947 without taking a degree. He immediately joined the Gate Theatre where he played with the Longford company until 1958. He was one of the founders of Irish Actors Equity and served as president of the Catholic Stage Guild.[2]

Broadcasting career[edit]

In 1961 Mitchel joined the newly formed state television station, Telefís Éireann, as chief newscaster. His starting salary was £26 per week.[3] Mitchel was one of the first faces seen on the new station when he read the first news bulletin on 31 December 1961, minutes after the station was launched. He received numerous honours, including being awarded television personality of the year, and was the first RTÉ presenter to win a Jacobs' Award. Mitchel retired from the station in November 1984.

In 1989 he joined LMFM, a local radio station in Co. Louth, where he read the news and answered listeners' queries.[1]

Personal life[edit]

Mitchel was keenly interested in animal welfare and served as vice-president of the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals for several years in the 1980s. He bred basset hounds and adjudicated at dog shows.

Mitchel married Elizabeth ('Betty') Stubbs on 9 May 1949 and they had two children, Nicholas and Susan. He died in Bloomfield Nursing Home, Donnybrook and is buried at Glasnevin cemetery.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Dictionary of Irish Biography, Patrick Long, "Mitchel, Charles Gerald", retrieved 22 December 2010
  2. ^ The Irish Times ("Death of Charles Mitchel, the voice of news on RTÉ", p.4) , 19 August 1996
  3. ^ The Irish Times ("Voice of an Era", p.37) , 24 August 1996