Gethin Jones

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Gethin Jones
Haypresent.jpg
Jones at the Hay Festival in Hay-on-Wye, 31 May 2008
Born Gethin Clifford Jones
(1978-02-12) 12 February 1978 (age 36)
Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom
Occupation Television presenter
Years active 1990s–present
Employer ITV Breakfast
Television Presenting:
Blue Peter (2005–08)
Remembrance Week (2010—)
71 Degrees North (2010)
Daybreak (2011, 12—)
Holding Out for a Hero (2011)
The 21st Question (2014—)
Website
Official website
Daybreak page

Gethin Clifford Jones (born 12 February 1978) is a Welsh television presenter who has co-presented the BBC children's programme Blue Peter. An active rugby union player when at the Manchester Metropolitan University and for a time after graduation, Jones began his television career on Welsh channel S4C as a presenter of children's programmes such as Popty, Mas Draw and the flagship children's entertainment show Uned 5 (Unit 5, 2002–05). In 2005, he became the 31st presenter of Blue Peter, the world's longest-running children's television series. On 8 April 2008 he announced he would be leaving the programme at the end of the season in June 2008.

Jones has also hosted major live telecasts of events like Mardi Gras in Cardiff and New Year Live and since 2008 has co-hosted E24, which is shown on BBC News, the BBC's 24-hour news channel. In 2007 Jones was a contestant in Series 5 of Strictly Come Dancing, partnered by professional dancer Camilla Dallerup. Together, they achieved third place.

In May 2012, Jones joined the ITV Breakfast programme Daybreak as a features reporter and a stand-in presenter.[1]

Gethin has also presented the ITV game shows Holding Out for a Hero in 2011 and The 21st Question since 2014.[2][3]

Early life and education[edit]

Gethin Jones was born on 12 February 1978 in Cardiff, the son of Sylvia (née Groskop), a violin teacher, and Goronwy Jones, headteacher of Baden Powell Primary School. He has an older sister, Mererid.[4] One of his maternal great-grandfathers was a Polish Jewish immigrant.[5][6] With Welsh as his first language, he attended Ysgol Gynradd Coed-y-Gof and Ysgol Gyfun Gymraeg Glantaf (in Llandaff North, Cardiff) for his primary and secondary school education, respectively. Jones has Grade 8 violin and Grade 6 piano qualifications,[7] and took part in school musicals and school and county orchestras. He took Biology, Geography and Economics at A-Levels.[8][9][10]

Jones had dual interests throughout school – his mother wanted him to develop his musical talents, while he enjoyed rugby union. While studying Economics and Geography at the Manchester Metropolitan University where he gained a 2:2,[7][9] he was captain of the university's rugby first team and played in the Lancashire under-21 team. At the age of 21 in his final year, he was offered trials by Sale RFC.[9] However, after his father turned down a request for financial assistance and he experienced difficulties trying to play whilst supporting himself as a gym trainer, he found that his on-field capabilities suffered. He eventually set aside his plans for a professional rugby career and returned to Wales.[8]

Professional career[edit]

Prior to his television career, Jones worked as a bank clerk, a telephone hotline officer, and a research assistant, and spent three months as a builder laying house foundations.[7] He subsequently joined Welsh channel S4C as a presenter of children's programmes such as Popty (the Welsh equivalent of Top of the Pops),[11] Mas Draw, and the flagship children's entertainment show Uned 5 (2002–05).[12] In 2004, as part of a challenge on the show, he learned how to fly a plane and gained his pilot's licence.[7]

In 2003 he was voted Bachelor of the Year by the readers of Company magazine.[8][13]

Blue Peter[edit]

On 26 April 2005, Jones became a presenter[14] of the children's television series, Blue Peter.[11][13] He auditioned on the same day as co-presenter Zöe Salmon. During his time, he presented the show with Salmon, Konnie Huq, Matt Baker, Liz Barker and Andy Akinwolere. As a presenter he took on the action/adventure role filled by John Noakes and Peter Duncan in the past; highlights included flying with the Red Arrows[11] and in a World War II Supermarine Spitfire, completing submarine escape training with the Royal Navy,[15] surviving the Bolivian jungle,[16] being attacked by an alligator in Louisiana.[17] learning to race like a jockey,[16] and fighting as a samurai warrior in Japan.[17]

In 2006, he became the second civilian, the first being Jimmy Savile in the 1970s, to finish the Royal Marine Commando 30-mile (48 km) Yomp[15] – he finished in a time of eight hours and 20 minutes.[18] He also played the violin at the Proms with the BBC Philharmonic.[16]

Beginning on Jones's 30th birthday on 12 February 2008, he and his Blue Peter co-presenters climbed the four highest peaks in the United Kingdom, starting with Slieve Donard in Northern Ireland, followed by Snowdon in North Wales. The following day, having travelled overnight by coach to the Lake District, they climbed Scafell Pike. They were then to be transported to Scotland by helicopter to climb Ben Nevis but were unable to do so because of problems with the helicopter which forced them to land in Oban. They succeeded in climbing the mountain the next day. This challenge was in aid of Sport Relief 2008.[19]

Jones announced on 8 April 2008 on Blue Peter that after three and half years on the show he would be leaving it at the end of the series in June. His spokeswoman said he had always planned to leave when he turned 30. Jones said, "I've had a career on Blue Peter that you wouldn't even dream about and for that I feel privileged and fortunate. ... I've loved it, lived it ... and now I feel the time is right to leave it."[16][20]

Jones presenting at a charity ball on 21 March 2008 in Bristol, England

Presenter[edit]

Jones has been a presenter for a number of major live telecasts, including Mardi Gras in Cardiff in front of 40,000 people, Y Briodas Fawr (The Big Wedding, 2004–2005),[21] and Jones Jones Jones (2006) at Cardiff's Wales Millennium Centre where the world record was broken for the biggest gathering of people with the same surname.[22] He co-presented the 2006, 2007 and 2008 New Year's Eve programme New Year Live on BBC One with various other presenters.[23]

On 16 February 2008, Jones began presenting a new 15-minute entertainment show entitled E24 on BBC News with James Dagwell.[24] Between 4 and 11 May 2008, Jones was the narrator and presenter of the 2008 BBC Young Musician of the Year. The biennial music competition was held at the Millennium Centre in Cardiff, and broadcast on BBC Two and BBC Four.[25]

Jones made his radio debut on BBC Radio 5 Live on 5 July 2008,[26] presenting a three-hour Saturday morning show focusing on sport and entertainment.[27]

Jones appeared in The National Lottery: Big 7, a live programme broadcast on BBC One on 30 August 2008 at which the winners of the National Lottery Awards 2008 were announced.[28]

ITV presented Soccer Aid on 7 September 2008, and Jones was one of the players for the Rest of the World. England won four goals to three.[29] Jones was again chosen to play for the Rest of the World in the Soccer Aid match on 7 June 2010. The team won 7 goals to 6 after a penalty shoot out.

On 13 September 2008 Jones presented the Proms in the Park from Singleton Park in Swansea. This was televised on the BBC as part of the Last Night of the Proms programme and was one of the concerts available for viewers with interactive television.[30]

For six weeks from 28 September, Jones presented a programme for Virgin 1 entitled Gethin Jones' Danger Hunters, which featured adrenaline junkies and their search for the ultimate thrill.[31] Jones presented a Police Camera Action! programme about the dangers of drink driving, which was aired on 17 December 2008 on ITV1.[32]

2009-11[edit]

Between 7 January and 15 April 2009, Jones hosted his first quiz show, a Welsh language rugby-themed general knowledge competition, on S4C entitled Cwis Meddiant.[33] He is following this up with another quiz show on Sky1 called Sell Me the Answer. Filming of the 50 episodes took place at the Fountain Studios in Wembley, North London, and the programme commenced airing in November 2009.[34]

From 17 to 21 August 2009, Jones presented BBC One magazine show The One Show with Gloria Hunniford during the absence of its regular presenters Adrian Chiles and Christine Bleakley[35]

In 2010, Jones presented the Golden Globes programme from the red carpet in Los Angeles on Sunday 17 January 2010. The programme was broadcast on Sky1 Movies and Sky1 Movies HD, with a résumé on Sky1 at 11 pm. His co-host on the red carpet was Angela Griffin, and a studio show in the UK was hosted by Claudia Winkelman.[36]

On 12 February 2010, Jones was a guest on the Welsh S4C chat show Jonathan which is presented by Jonathan Davies.[37]

During 2010, Jones co-hosted ITV series 71 Degrees North alongside Kate Thornton, which sees celebrities performing various tasks in the extreme weather conditions of Norway.[38]

In February 2011, Jones was a guest presenter on This Morning for one episode alongside Gloria Hunniford.

In the Autumn of 2011, Jones was the presenter of ITV gameshow Holding Out For a Hero. He also hosted Remembrance Week on BBC One for a week in November.

From 19–23 December he was a guest features reporter for the ITV Breakfast programme Daybreak.

2012–present[edit]

Jones and Louise Minchin presented the documentary series Crime and Punishment, which began on BBC One on 12 March 2012. From 21 May 2012, Jones joined the ITV Breakfast programme Daybreak full-time as a reporter.[1]

In 2014, Jones will host a new ITV 10-part daytime quiz show, The 21st Question.[2][39]

Other work[edit]

Jones appeared as a Cyberman in a 2006 episode of Doctor Who and as a Dalek operator in the final episode in 2008.[40] He guest-starred as himself in The Sarah Jane Adventures pilot "Invasion of the Bane" (2007).

In 2007 Jones participated in Series 5 of Strictly Come Dancing, partnering Camilla Dallerup.[41] He came third after being voted out in a "dance-off" in the semi-final.[42] He also appeared in the programme's Christmas Special, finishing second behind Darren Gough after each couple received a perfect score.

Jones was one of the celebrities who took part in the Strictly Come Dancing: The Live Tour! 2009. As his partner from the television show, Camilla Dallerup, was dancing with Tom Chambers, Jones partnered Flavia Cacace. The tour commenced in Newcastle on 16 January and ended at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham on 22 February 2009 with a total of 44 shows.[43] He and his dance partner achieved a total of six wins during the run of the tour.[44]

In December 2009, Jones appeared in the 2009 Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special along with Rachel Stevens, Ali Bastian, Ricky Whittle, Chris Hollins and Austin Healey. His partner was again Flavia Cacace. The couple were not voted into the final two, despite a score of 38 for their American Smooth. From 4 December 2009 until 10 January 2010, Jones appeared as Prince Charming in the pantomime Cinderella at the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre, Guildford. In September 2010, Jones appeared as the Narrator in The Rocky Horror Show at Venue Cymru, Llandudno.[45]

In 2012 Jones made a cameo appearance as himself in an episode of the UK TV comedy drama Stella.

In May 2012, Jones was an Olympic Torchbearer in the torch relay before the 2012 Summer Olympic Games.[46]

Since August 2012, Jones has been an Ambassador for the Wandsworth series of London Sky Rides.

Television & Radio credits[edit]

Television
Year Title Role
2005–08 Blue Peter Co-Presenter
2006 Jones Jones Jones Presenter
2006–08 New Year Live Reporter
2008 BAFTA Cymru Awards Presenter
Young Musician of the Year Presenter
BBC Radio 5 Live Presenter
The National Lottery: Big 7 Presenter
Gethin Jones' Danger Hunters Presenter
2008, 09 BBC Proms in the Park, Wales Presenter
2008, 10— Police Camera Action! Presenter
2008— E24 Presenter
2009 Cwis Meddiant Presenter
The One Show Stand-in Presenter
2009–10 Sell Me the Answer Presenter
2010 71 Degrees North Co-Presenter
Golden Globes: Red Carpet Co-Presenter
2010— Remembrance Week Presenter
2011 This Morning Guest Presenter
Holding Out for a Hero Presenter
The Adventurer's Guide to Britain Co-Presenter
2011, 12— Daybreak Reporter
2012 Crime and Punishment Co-Presenter
Britain's Secret Treasures Reporter
2014 The 21st Question Presenter

Some of the information in this table was obtained from Gethin Jones: Filmography, Internet Movie Database (IMDb), retrieved 2008-01-21 .

Actor, cameo or participant[edit]

Date(s)
of appearance
Television programme or series Role Notes
2004 Company Bachelor of the Year 2004 Participant
25 June 2006 Children's Party at the Palace Julian Kirrin of Enid Blyton's Famous Five
13 May 2006 – 20 May 2006 Doctor Who

"Rise of the Cybermen/The Age of Steel"

Cyberman 2 episodes
2007 Strictly Come Dancing Participant Came third
2007 Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two Guest
1 January 2007 The Sarah Jane Adventures

"Invasion of the Bane"

Himself, Cameo appearance 1 episode
5 July 2008 Doctor Who

"Journey's End"

Dalek 1 episode
7 September 2008 Soccer Aid 2008 Player, Rest of the World team
16 January –
22 February 2009
Strictly Come Dancing: The Live Tour! 2009 Participant

Some of the information in this table was obtained from Gethin Jones: Filmography, Internet Movie Database (IMDb), retrieved 21 January 2008 .

Awards[edit]

On 5 November 2008, Jones was awarded the title of "Ultimate Hottie" by Cosmopolitan magazine.[47]

Personal life[edit]

In December 2007 Jones became romantically involved with Welsh mezzo-soprano Katherine Jenkins.[48] They first met in 2005[4] when she appeared on Blue Peter and he was struck by how good she was with kids: "You kind of think people like that are all going to be false, but she really wasn't at all, and I like that. She really is lovely, a typical Neath girl."[8] It was reported they met after Jenkins sang "Time To Say Goodbye" with Italian opera singer Andrea Bocelli on an episode of Strictly Come Dancing, broadcast on 21 October 2007.[49] Jenkins's spokesman has said: "They're old friends and they've been on several dates. But people shouldn't consider buying hats just yet."[50]

In February 2011, Jones and Katherine Jenkins became engaged.[51] However, on 30 December 2011 they both announced that they were going their separate ways.

Jones is a keen footballer (he supports Everton Football Club),[52] tennis player and golfer.[7] He is short-sighted and wore contact lenses or glasses,[9] until he underwent a laser procedure to correct his shortsightedness on 17 June 2009.

Further reading[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Gethin Jones joins Daybreak ITV Press Centre, 16 May 2012
  2. ^ a b http://primetime.unrealitytv.co.uk/itv-announce-new-gameshows-ejector-seat-21st-question-andi-peters-gethin-jones/
  3. ^ http://www.tv3.ie/entertainment_article.php?locID=1.803.813&article=125639
  4. ^ a b Catherine Evans (9 December 2007), "Katherine and Gethin's first meeting", Wales on Sunday (reproduced on icWales.co.uk) 
  5. ^ http://www.walesonline.co.uk/showbiz-and-lifestyle/showbiz/2012/11/17/how-tv-star-gethin-jones-ancestors-saved-thousands-of-lives-91466-32239386/
  6. ^ http://www.dailypost.co.uk/leisure/tv-wales/programme-news/2012/11/17/coming-home-gethin-jones-on-bbc1-55578-32252146/
  7. ^ a b c d e David Greenwood (25 January 2005), "Blue Peter job is like a dream", Daily Post (reproduced on icNorthWales.co.uk) 
  8. ^ a b c d Jenny Johnston (19 December 2007), "From rugby player to ballroom star: Strictly's 'Gorgeous Gethin' driven to succeed by a need for his father's approval", Daily Mail (London) 
  9. ^ a b c d Jonatha Sale [interviewer] (15 March 2007), "Passed/Failed: An education in the life of Gethin Jones, 'Blue Peter' presenter: 'All of my lessons were in Welsh'", The Independent (London) 
  10. ^ Jones got an E in biology, D in geography and C in economics for his A-levels, and an A in music at AS-level: Jonathan Sale [interviewer] (15 March 2007), "Passed/Failed: An education in the life of Gethin Jones, 'Blue Peter' presenter: 'All of my lessons were in Welsh'", The Independent (London) 
  11. ^ a b c Biographies: Gethin Jones, presenter, Blue Peter, BBC Press Office, December 2005, retrieved 18 June 2008 [dead link][dead link]
  12. ^ Sian Eirian (22 November 2007), "Show has a grand day out with Gethin Jones", Western Mail 
  13. ^ a b "Gethin gets the job and a Blue Peter badge", Western Mail (reproduced on icWales.co.uk), 25 January 2005 
  14. ^ Welsh TV host to join Blue Peter, BBC News, 24 January 2005 
  15. ^ a b Blue Peter presenter takes the plunge, Ministry of Defence, 2 February 2007, retrieved 19 January 2008 ; Gethin gets in the water, Navy News, Royal Navy, 8 March 2007, retrieved 21 January 2007 [dead link]
  16. ^ a b c d Gethin Jones to quit Blue Peter, icWales.co.uk, 8 April 2008, retrieved 18 June 2008 
  17. ^ a b The contestants: Gethin Jones, Strictly Come Dancing, 2007, archived from the original on 23 October 2007, retrieved 21 January 2008 [dead link]
  18. ^ In January 2008 it was reported that Jones was to try for an honorary Green Beret from the Royal Marine Commandos: "Geth goes from Blue to green", The Sun (London), 14 January 2008 
  19. ^ Hywel Trewyn (13 February 2008), "Blue Peter's Gethin climbs Snowdon for birthday", Daily Post ; "Zoe's in peak condition", The Belfast Telegraph, 13 February 2008 ; Jamie Smith (14 February 2008), "Blue Peter hits new heights on Snowdon", Caernarfon Herald (reproduced on icWales.co.uk) 
  20. ^ Ben Dowell (8 April 2008), "Gethin Jones leaves Blue Peter", The Guardian (MediaGuardian) (London) 
  21. ^ Y Briodas Fawr, UK Game Shows.com, 2007?, retrieved 3 September 2008 
  22. ^ Meet the Joneses for world record, BBC News, 19 July 2006 ; "World record attempt is a family affair", USA Today, 3 November 2006 
  23. ^ Leigh Holmwood (2 January 2008), "BBC1 countdown chimes with viewers", The Guardian (London) 
  24. ^ Leigh Holmwood (12 February 2008), "News 24 launches showbiz news show", The Guardian (g2) (London) ; Nadia Brooks (12 February 2008), "Gethin gets new presenting gig", The Sun (London) 
  25. ^ Laura Wright (9 April 2008), "Gethin says goodbye but Dr Who beckons", South Wales Echo (reproduced on icWales.co.uk) ; Karen Price (9 April 2008), "TV's Gethin sets course for stardom", Western Mail (reproduced on icWales.co.uk) ; The grand final weekend, BBC, 2008, retrieved 30 April 2008 
  26. ^ Gethin Jones, BBC Radio 5 Live, 2008, retrieved 7 July 2008 
  27. ^ Blue Peter star joins Five Live, BBC News, 22 April 2008 
  28. ^ The National Lottery Awards – winners announced live on BBC1!, National Lottery, 18 April 2008, retrieved 23 August 2008 [dead link]
  29. ^ Final Soccer Aid line up is announced, ITV, 2008, retrieved 4 September 2008 ; Kev Geoghegan (5 September 2008), "Stars to raise cash at Soccer Aid", BBC News, retrieved 2 October 2008 
  30. ^ BBC Proms in the Park, BBC Press Office, 9 April 2008, retrieved 18 June 2008 ; Jason Evans (13 June 2008), Proms back in city with Italian flavour, ThisisSwansea.co.uk, retrieved 18 June 2008 [dead link]
  31. ^ Adam Benzine (11 June 2008), Virgin1 hunts down Fear Junkies, C21 Media, retrieved 18 June 2008 ; "Gethin to brave wild weather", The Sun (London), 12 June 2008 
  32. ^ Police Camera Action drink drive special, ITV, 24 November 2008, retrieved 17 December 2008 
  33. ^ Cwis Meddiant, Cwis Meddiant, S4C, 2009, retrieved 24 April 2009, "This is my first stab at presenting a TV quiz, but I enjoy anything that has an element of competition because I'm such a competitive person myself." ; [Fixtures], Cwis Meddiant, S4C, 2009, retrieved 24 April 2009 
  34. ^ Fancy winning £25,000? Want to be on TV?, Sky1, British Sky Broadcasting, 2009, retrieved 24 April 2009 
  35. ^ "One Programmes – The One Show". BBC. Retrieved 2011-12-30. 
  36. ^ "The Golden Globe Awards 2010". Tv.sky.com. 14 December 2009. Retrieved 2011-12-30. 
  37. ^ "S4C profile: Adloniant". S4c.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-12-30. 
  38. ^ "Richie, Huq tipped for '71 Degrees North' – 71 Degrees North News". Digital Spy. 25 February 2010. Retrieved 2011-12-30. 
  39. ^ http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/tv/news/a549385/andi-peters-to-host-ejector-seat-itv-gameshow.html
  40. ^ Simon Reynolds (11 April 2008), Gethin Jones stars in 'Doctor Who', Digital Spy, retrieved 2008-06-27 
  41. ^ Beth Neil (8 December 2007), "Gethin to know you: Exclusive: Blue Peter star is now strictly sex", Daily Mirror ; "Who's danced their way to the number 6 slot?", Heatworld.com, 28 December 2007, retrieved 19 January 2008 
  42. ^ Gethin Jones dances off Strictly, BBC News, 16 December 2007 ; Clemmie Moodie (17 December 2007), "Exit Strictly Come Dancing's Gethin, straight into Katherine's arms", Daily Mail (London) ; Mark Jeffries (17 December 2007), "Gethin gets the boot", Daily Mirror ; Kate Bodinger (17 December 2007), "Gethin misses out but dad proud", South Wales Echo ; Lisa McGarry (17 December 2007), Gethin Jones leaves Strictly Come Dancing, Unreality TV: The UK and Ireland's Biggest Reality TV Blog!, retrieved 19 January 2008 
  43. ^ Celebrity dancers 2009, Strictly Come Dancing: The Live Tour!, Stage Entertainment & Phil McIntyre Entertainment in association with BBC Worldwide, 2009, archived from the original on 3 January 2009, retrieved 23 January 2009 
  44. ^ 2009 winners, Strictly Come Dancing: The Live Tour!, Stage Entertainment & Phil McIntyre Entertainment in association with BBC Worldwide, February 2009, archived from the original on 9 March 2009, retrieved 24 April 2009 
  45. ^ "INTERVIEW: Gethin Jones likes his horror Rocky". Northwaleschronicle.co.uk. 17 August 2010. Retrieved 2011-12-30. 
  46. ^ http://www.officialgethinjones.com/news/2012/05/25/torchbearer_gethin-226
  47. ^ See the Ultimate Hottie, Sky Showbiz, 6 November 2008, retrieved 17 November 2008 
  48. ^ Emma Cox; Sara Nathan (7 December 2007), "Let us Geth it on, Katherine", The Sun (London) ; "Katherine Jenkins dating Blue Peter presenter Gethin Jones", South Wales Evening Post, 8 December 2007 ; Catherine Evans (9 December 2007), "Katherine and Gethin's first meeting", Wales on Sunday (reproduced on icWales.co.uk) ; Donna McConnell (12 December 2007), "Strictly's Gethin set to dance off with opera diva Katherine Jenkins' heart but she really thinks he is a complete arse", Mail on Sunday (London) ; Emma Pengelly (13 December 2007), "Romance for Neath's golden girl and Blue Peter heartthrob Gethin", Neath Guardian ; Colin Robertson (15 December 2007), "Gethin twirls girlfriend Kath", The Sun (London) ; Hannah Jones (17 December 2007), "Katherine and Gethin are Welsh golden couple", Western Mail (reproduced on icWales.co.uk) 
  49. ^ Steffan Rhys (8 December 2007), "Katherine Jenkins and Gethin Jones dating", Western Mail (reproduced on icWales.co.uk) 
  50. ^ Ben Glaze (8 December 2007), "New Welsh celebrity couple are an item", South Wales Echo (reproduced on icWales.co.uk) 
  51. ^ Nicholl, Katie (6 February 2011). "I'm Gethin married! Engagement joy for Katherine Jenkins and her Blue Peter boyfriend". Daily Mail (London). 
  52. ^ Lara Gould (4 November 2007), "Strictly Gethin's backstage secrets: Exclusive: Strictly Gethin on what really goes on backstage", Sunday Mirror 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Simon Thomas
Blue Peter Presenter No. 31
2005–2008
Succeeded by
Joel Defries