Dave Lee Travis

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Dave Lee Travis
Dave Lee Travis.jpg
Travis in 2004
Born David Patrick Griffin[1]
(1945-05-25) 25 May 1945 (age 68)[2]
Buxton, Derbyshire, England
Occupation Radio and television presenter
Spouse(s) Marianne Griffin (m. 1971)[3]

David Patrick Griffin (born 25 May 1945, Buxton, Derbyshire),[4] known professionally as Dave Lee Travis, is a British disc jockey, radio presenter and television presenter.[1][2]

Travis began his broadcasting career on the pirate radio station Radio Caroline in 1965. He moved to BBC Radio 1 where he became one of the station's leading presenters during the 1970s and 1980s, and a regular presenter of Top of the Pops. Following his resignation from the BBC in 1993, he worked for several British commercial radio stations.

In November 2012, Travis was arrested by officers from Operation Yewtree on suspicion of historic sexual offences, which he denied.[5] In February 2014, he was found not guilty on twelve of the counts, with the jury unable to reach a decision on a further two counts.[6]

Early life and career[edit]

Born in Buxton, Derbyshire,[4] Travis was raised in Manchester.[7] His father was a stage manager and he attended Manchester Central Grammar School for Boys.[8]

Travis's first jobs were as a graphic designer, a designer of shop interiors and a photographer.[4] At night and weekends he began working as a DJ at the Oasis Club in Manchester, making use of a Dansette autochanger.[9] Giving up his other jobs, he went on a self-created and promoted UK tour of clubs, ballrooms and theatres presenting his own DJ shows. Consequently, he was asked by Herman's Hermits to become the tour manager and warm-up DJ on their next tour of the United States,[2][10][11] supporting Bobby Vee and Freddy Cannon.[12] On his return to the UK, Travis returned to the north of England and continued to promote his own shows in Blackpool, Bury and the surrounding areas.[citation needed]

Radio[edit]

Radio Caroline[edit]

In September 1965, Travis started work at the offshore pirate radio station Radio Caroline South from the MV Mi Amigo off the Essex coast, later moving onto Radio Caroline North from the MV Fredericia off the Isle of Man until mid-August 1967.

BBC Radio 1[edit]

In 1967, offshore pirate radio was outlawed by the Marine Broadcasting Offences Act. After a short period working on television in Germany on the Beat-Club pop programme,[2][4] Travis returned to Manchester to present the daily radio show Pop North on Radio 1 in 1968,[13] and hosted Saturday afternoon programmes in the 4 to 5:30pm slot. In 1969, he took over a Sunday morning show from 10am to midday. In 1971, he was promoted to the weekday lunchtime show from 11am to 1pm, moving back to Sunday mornings in 1973 and also presenting the Radio 1 Club on Thursdays from 5 to 7pm. He also presented the Sunday afternoon request show between 3 and 5pm.

In 1976, Travis took over the weekday teatime slot, 4.30–5.45pm (extended to run 4.30–7pm in 1977). He then took over The Radio 1 Breakfast Show from Noel Edmonds in May 1978 and continued in this slot until December 1980. He nicknamed himself "the Hairy Cornflake" during his time as the Radio 1 Breakfast Show host.[13]

In 1976, an on-air parody of C W McCall's US hit Convoy led to a release of the song Convoy GB as a single, recorded with fellow DJ Paul Burnett under the name Laurie Lingo and the Dipsticks. The song reached number four in the UK singles chart and Travis appeared as the song's narrator "Super Scouse" on Top Of The Pops.

In January 1981, Travis moved to weekday afternoons from 2.30 to 4.30pm. Later that year he moved back to the weekday lunchtime slot from 11.30am to 2pm, before moving to a Saturday morning show in 1983 from 10am to 1pm, then Sunday mornings from 10am to 1pm in 1987, taking over both Saturday and Sunday in September 1988.

On-air resignation[edit]

On 8 August 1993, Travis resigned on-air during his Sunday morning show, stating that he could not agree with changes that were being made to Radio 1. Travis told his audience that changes were afoot that he could not tolerate "and I really want to put the record straight at this point and I thought you ought to know – changes are being made here which go against my principles and I just cannot agree with them".[14]

A Jolly Good Show[edit]

From 1981 to 2001, Travis presented the BBC World Service music request programme A Jolly Good Show, having taken over from Noel Edmonds. In June 2011, Burmese pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi said the programme had given her a lifeline. The Nobel Peace Prize winner, who had spent 15 years under house arrest from 1989, told the BBC that A Jolly Good Show had made her "world much more complete".[1] Travis said he was "touched" but "not surprised" that she had remembered it.[15]

Since 1993[edit]

On leaving Radio 1, Travis hosted a networked Sunday morning show (10am–1pm) across some of the UK's commercial radio stations. He also went to Classic Gold where he hosted the 10am–1pm morning show (later 9am–12pm), before moving to breakfast 7am–9am and then back to mornings 9am–11am.

In 2002, Travis left Classic Gold to work for the British Army's Garrison FM.

From March 2003 to March 2007, Travis returned to the BBC, and presented a Sunday morning show from 9am to 12pm on BBC Three Counties Radio, his local BBC radio station.

In July 2006, Travis joined the Magic Network, a network of eight radio stations across the north of England on AM and DAB Digital Radio, hosting The DLT Show at 10am–1pm on Saturdays and, since 4 February 2007, at the same time on Sundays with his co-host Dan Black.[citation needed]

Travis is a member of the Radio Academy Hall of Fame.[2]

Television[edit]

Travis presented the German TV show Beat-Club, where he introduced such acts as Cream, the Jimi Hendrix Experience and Steamhammer.

On BBC television, Travis presented editions of Top of the Pops in the 1970s and 1980s. He was also the presenter of The Golden Oldie Picture Show in the mid-1980s, an attempt by the BBC to create videos for classic pop songs that pre-dated the video age.

Travis provided the UK commentary for the Eurovision Song Contest 1971 in Dublin, Ireland, and in 1985 presented the Eurovision Song Contest Previews on BBC1.[16]

On 14 February 2000, Travis was the subject of the This Is Your Life programme on British TV.[17]

In 2007, Travis appeared in the video for the Comic Relief version of the Proclaimers song "I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)", performed by Peter Kay and Matt Lucas.

Other TV appearances include The Weakest Link, Noel's House Party, Mrs. Merton, Stars Reunited, Kick Start, Dave's Lee's and Travis's and Today with Des and Mel.

Sexual assault investigation and trial[edit]

In October 2012, it was alleged by two former BBC employees that Travis sexually assaulted several women during his time at the BBC. One of the women, who was 17 at the time, claimed in the media after making a formal statement to police that Travis put his hand up her skirt in 1977.[18] The other, presenter Vivien Creegor, claimed Travis "jiggled her breasts" when she was live on BBC Radio 4 in the 1980s.[18] Travis said in a statement: "I categorically deny that there is any substance in either allegation and I’m genuinely surprised that allegations of this nature have been made. I totally refute any impropriety."[18]

On 15 November 2012, he was arrested at his home by the Metropolitan Police as part of the Operation Yewtree inquiry.[19][20] He was the fourth person to be arrested as part of the investigation.[21] On 16 November, Travis said in a statement "This is nothing to do with kids, all right? That's the first thing. Because that to me is the most important thing in the world and I do not wish to have my name sullied around something that bloody evil, to be honest. Yes, there's an ongoing police investigation about me and two grown women, all right?"[22]

On the same date, Magic AM announced that Travis would not be broadcasting on their station until the issue had been resolved.[22]

In October 2013, Travis was charged with and pleaded not guilty to 14 allegations of indecent assault and one of sexual assault between 1976 and 2008, relating to 11 female complainants aged between 15 and 29 at the time of the alleged offences.[5]

The trial began in January 2014 at Southwark Crown Court. On 13 February, the jury returned a not guilty verdict on twelve of the counts, and failed to reach a verdict on the remaining two counts. Following the verdict, Travis told reporters "I do not feel like there is a victory in any way, shape or form. On the contrary, I think you already know that I have been through a year and a half of hell on this."[6][23] On 24 February, it was reported that the prosecution was seeking a retrial on the two outstanding counts.[24]

On 28 March 2014, it was reported that Travis would be facing another charge of indecent assault as well as the retrial on the two outstanding counts.[25] On 15 April, it was reported that he was facing another charge of indecent assault on a woman aged over 16 in 1995. He will appear at Westminster Magistrates' Court on 24 April.[26]

Personal life[edit]

Travis lives in Buckland, Buckinghamshire, with his wife Marianne, who he married in 1971.[27][3]

His interests include photography and classic cars.[4] In 1987, he published a book of his own photographic efforts called A Bit of a Star, which he dedicated to his late father.[28] In the 1970s, Travis was a regular drag racer.[12][29]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Pass notes No 2,997: Dave Lee Travis". The Guardian. 21 June 2011. Retrieved 15 November 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Dave Lee Travis". Radio Academy. Retrieved 15 November 2012. 
  3. ^ a b "Dave Lee Travis cleared of string of indecent assaults". The Guardian. 13 February 2014. Retrieved 14 February 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c d e "Dave Lee Travis". radiorewind.co.uk. Retrieved 15 November 2012. 
  5. ^ a b "Dave Lee Travis pleads not guilty to sex offence charges". BBC News. 22 October 2013. Retrieved 22 January 2014. 
  6. ^ a b "Dave Lee Travis trial: DJ cleared of indecent assault". BBC News. 13 February 2014. Retrieved 13 February 2014. 
  7. ^ The medallion-clad arbiter
  8. ^ Sheila Tracy (1983). Who’s who on radio. Worlds Work Ltd. ISBN 0-437-17600-2. 
  9. ^ "When DJs had to talk between records". The Independent. 15 August 1999. Retrieved 15 November 2012. 
  10. ^ "Herman's Hermits US tour". hermanshermits.com. 5 June 1965. Retrieved 15 November 2012. 
  11. ^ "Herman's as big as the Beatles in America". hermanshermits.com. 5 June 1965. Retrieved 15 November 2012. 
  12. ^ a b "Dave Lee Travis". British Drag Racing Hall of Fame. Retrieved 15 November 2012. 
  13. ^ a b "Profile: Dave Lee Travis". BBC News. 15 November 2012. Retrieved 14 February 2014. 
  14. ^ "Profile: Dave Lee Travis". Aircheck Tracker. Archived from the original on 2009-10-22. Retrieved 13 November 2008. 
  15. ^ "Suu Kyi Reveals DJ Travis Lifeline". Bbc.co.uk. 2011-06-21. Retrieved 2012-11-17. 
  16. ^ "The Eurovision Song Contest (1971) (TV)". IMDb. Retrieved 22 June 2008. 
  17. ^ "This Is Your Life - Dave Lee Travis". IMDb. Retrieved 14 February 2014. 
  18. ^ a b c Richard Alleyne (15 October 2012). "Dave Lee Travis allegedly 'groped' women in his BBC studio". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 15 November 2012. 
  19. ^ "Dave Lee Travis 'arrested in Jimmy Savile police inquiry'". BBC News. 15 November 2012. Retrieved 15 November 2012. 
  20. ^ Martin Evans (15 November 2012). "Dave Lee Travis arrested as part of Jimmy Savile sex abuse probe". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 15 November 2012. 
  21. ^ "Former BBC DJ Dave Lee Travis arrested in Savile case". 3 News NZ. 16 November 2012. 
  22. ^ a b "DJ Dave Lee Travis says arrest not linked to children". BBC News. 16 November 2012. Retrieved 16 November 2012. 
  23. ^ Sam Greenhill (14 February 2014). "'I'm not bitter at this verdict, but I pray it won't stop other women going to police': Accuser who triggered DLT prosecution 'disappointed' but 'respects jury's decision'". Daily Mail. 
  24. ^ "Dave Lee Travis to face retrial on sex offence charges". BBC News. 24 February 2014. Retrieved 24 February 2014. 
  25. ^ Ex-BBC DJ Travis to be charged with a further sex offence
  26. ^ "Dave Lee Travis charged with indecent assault". BBC. 15 April. 
  27. ^ "Vale DJ Dave Lee Travis cleared of indecent assault - but could face retrial on two counts". The Bucks Herald. 13 February 2014. Retrieved 14 February 2014. 
  28. ^ Travis, Dave Lee (1987). A Bit of a Star: Media Women..... Their fine-points and phobias as photographed by Dave Lee Travis. Kodak. ISBN 978-0-901023-34-6. 
  29. ^ "Crazy Horses, The History of UK Drag Racing". Retrieved 23 March 2011. 

External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
Noel Edmonds
BBC Radio 1
Breakfast Show presenter

1978–1980
Succeeded by
Mike Read
Preceded by
David Gell
Eurovision Song Contest UK Commentator
1971
Succeeded by
Tom Fleming