David Hamilton (broadcaster)

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David Hamilton
Born (1938-09-10) 10 September 1938 (age 76)
Manchester, Lancashire, England, UK

David Hamilton (born David Pilditch 10 September 1938) is a British radio presenter. Since his broadcasting career began in 1959, Hamilton has hosted over 12,000 radio shows and more than 1,000 TV shows. He is usually known as 'Diddy David Hamilton' which was a name given to him by the successful British comedian Ken Dodd.

Early life[edit]

Hamilton was born in Manchester, Lancashire, in 1938. He adopted his mother's maiden name as a show business name.

He attended Glastonbury Road Grammar School at St. Helier in Surrey, until aged 17.

TV career[edit]

On leaving school Hamilton became a script-writer for the TV series, Portrait of a Star.

In 1960 he became an in-vision television announcer for ABC TV (Associated British Corporation) based in Didsbury, Manchester and appeared with Ken Dodd in the TV series, Doddy's Music Box, acquiring the nickname, 'Diddy'. Throughout the 1960s he hosted shows for the Tyne Tees, Anglia and Westward Television companies.

He joined the then new Thames as an announcer in 1968, subsequently hosting many shows for them including Miss TV Times, TV Times Gala Awards, The World Disco Dance Championships, as well as many outside broadcasts, circus and sports shows. He appeared alongside comedians Benny Hill and Tommy Cooper and hosted Thames TV's showcase weeks on television in New York City and Los Angeles. Later he hosted ATV's Saturday night series, Up For the Cup, and four series of ITV's Hangman-style game show, All Clued Up.

For BBC TV he compered Top of the Pops and Seaside Special and in 1986 the Eurovision Song Contest Previews. For seven years he was the main host of one of the earliest satellite TV stations, Lifestyle.

In February 2012 at the age of 73 he danced to the track "Push it" with fellow DJ Tony Blackburn as contestants on the charity show "Let's Dance for Sport Relief"

BBC Radio[edit]

Hamilton made his broadcasting debut with the British Forces Network in Germany in 1959. His first UK broadcast was as the host of The Beat Show from the Playhouse Theatre, Manchester, in 1962. He hosted the show on the BBC Light Programme until 1965. He presented the final edition of Housewives' Choice in 1967 and was first heard on Radio 1 in November 1967, presenting Family Choice. By the late '60s Hamilton was presenting many shows for BBC radio, including Music Through Midnight, Roundabout, Pop Inn and Radio 1 Club.

In 1970 he joined the team of Late Night Extra and in 1973 was offered his own daily show on Radio 1 every weekday afternoon from 2.00pm-5.00pm. A regular feature was his "Tea at Three" slot which used as its jingle the 1961 version (by the Syncopators) of Jack Buchanan's 1935 hit "Everything Stops For Tea" – featuring a female vocal. In 1975 the show was simultaneously broadcast on Radio 1 and Radio 2 (listeners being able to hear the show in stereophonic sound on Radio 2's VHF frequency), giving it the biggest audience of the day. In December 1977, the show moved to Radio 2 and remained there until the end of 1986 when Hamilton quit the station, complaining of its 'geriatric' music policy.

Commercial radio[edit]

Since January 1987 Hamilton has been heard on many commercial stations in the UK. He joined Reading's Radio 210 and presented its daily 8:00am to 11:00am mid-morning show before joining Capital Gold in November 1988 to present its daily 10:00am to 1.00pm. In addition to that, he also presented a weekly oldies show which was heard on various ILR stations around the UK. This was usually heard on a Sunday afternoon.

In late 1994 Hamilton presented the Breakfast show on Melody FM (now Magic 105.4) for four years before moving to London's Liberty Radio to present an afternoon show. He also did a show on the Classic Gold Network on a Sunday.

As well as Classic Gold, in 2000 he joined PrimeTime Radio, presenting the weekday mid-morning show, where he remained until its demise in 2006. In addition to this, in October 2001 he left Classic Gold and presented the breakfast show on Birmingham's Saga 105.7 FM before moving to Nottingham's Saga 106.6 FM in early 2003. From 2004–06, he was heard on various radio stations around the UK, presenting his Million Sellers show, which would usually go out on a Saturday lunchtime, and was repeated at midnight.

In April 2012, Hamilton was one of the launch presenters on The Wireless, an Internet-based radio station operated by Age UK and aimed at older people throughout the UK.[1]

Stage[edit]

On stage Hamilton has compered shows by the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, David Cassidy and many other pop acts. He has hosted shows at venues like the Royal Albert Hall and the London Palladium, and headlined in four major pantomimes.

Sport[edit]

Hamilton was chosen to be the compere for the Wembley Lions Speedway team in 1970 and 1971. It was well known that Hamilton was a massive speedway fan, and this during the time that speedway was the second most popular spectator sport behind football.

During the 1970s Hamilton was also the match day presenter for the Reading Racers Speedway Club. Nowadays he can be seen regularly on BBC1's Match of the Day and BSkyB's Football First as he is the matchday compère at Fulham F.C.[2]

Current work[edit]

After and during the closure of Prime Time Radio, Hamilton was heard as stand-in presenter for Mike Read on Big L 1395 in the 9.00am-1.00pm slot. From June 2006 he was heard on Big L 1395 every weekday afternoon from 1.00pm-5.00pm. He left this show in the summer of 2007, although he did sometimes still cover for Mike Read. His Million Sellers show can still be heard some weekday evening from 9.00pm-10.00pm. His Million Sellers show can also be heard on a number of local commercial stations across the UK, usually on a Saturday or Sunday evening.

Hamilton was a stand-in presenter for Tony Blackburn on Fridays on KCFM 10am-2pm, and also did the 10.00am-2.00pm slot there on Christmas Eve 2008 & 2009, featuring previous Hamilton Hot Shots, and playing the Music Game quiz with listeners on the phone. He could be heard presenting weekdays between 3.00pm and 5.00pm (February–September 2009) on Internet radio station Wight FM (this was voice tracked) and featured on KCFM (Hull) on Sunday mornings between 6.00am and 8.00am, for 8 months at the start of 2010 onwards. Hamilton also broadcast on Radio Sunshine Fm. Costa Blanca, Spain. He was back on BigL 12-4pm Mon-Fri in November 2010. That was short lived. From February 2011, he can be heard on One Gold at 6.00am. His Million Sellers shows also go out there at 7.00pm Monday-Friday. He can also be heard on the Vintage Top 40 Show on various BBC local stations at 5.00pm on Sundays from time to time. He sat in for Judi Spiers on the morning show on BBC Radio Devon between Good Friday and May Day 2011 and again for two weeks in August/September 2013 when he interviewed many stars from the 1950s and '60s.

References[edit]

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