Huw Edwards (journalist)

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Huw Edwards
Huw Edwards (National Churches Trust).jpg
Born (1961-08-18) 18 August 1961 (age 53)
Bridgend, Glamorgan, Wales, United Kingdom
Residence Dulwich, London
Nationality British
Alma mater Cardiff University
Occupation Journalist, presenter, newsreader
Employer BBC
Notable credit(s) Olympic Games
BBC News at Ten
BBC News Channel
BBC News at Five
The Royal Wedding 2011
Children 5
Parents Hywel Teifi Edwards (father)

Huw Edwards (born 18 August 1961) is a BAFTA award-winning Welsh journalist, presenter and newsreader.

He is a news presenter for BBC News in the United Kingdom. Edwards presents Britain's most watched news programme, BBC News at Ten, which is also the corporation's flagship news broadcast. He also presents BBC coverage of state events, international events when David Dimbleby isn't able to, the hour-long BBC News at Five on the BBC's rolling news channel BBC News and occasionally presents BBC News at Six. He has also presented the BBC's coverage of major national events, such as the 2011 Royal Wedding, and the 2012 Olympic Games (Ceremony). He will be the new host of the BBC's General Election coverage from 2020.

He began his career at radio station Swansea Sound, from where he joined the BBC in 1984.

Background[edit]

Edwards was born in Bridgend, Wales, into a Welsh-speaking family, and, from the age of four, was brought up in Llangennech, near Llanelli. He was educated at Llanelli Boys' Grammar School[1] and graduated with a first-class honours degree in French from University College, Cardiff in 1983.[2] His father was the noted Welsh author and academic Hywel Teifi Edwards, who was Research Professor of Welsh-language Literature at the University College, Swansea.[3] His mother, Aerona Protheroe, taught at Llanelli's Ysgol Gyfun y Strade for 30 years. After his first degree, he started postgraduate work at Cardiff University in Medieval French before joining the BBC.

Career[edit]

BBC news[edit]

He joined the BBC as a news trainee in 1984, and in 1986 became Parliamentary Correspondent for BBC Wales.

Between May 1999 and January 2003, Edwards presented the BBC Six O'Clock News. During this period, the Six O'Clock News was the most watched news programme in Britain.

In January 2003, he became the main presenter of the Ten O'Clock News on BBC One, considered the corporation's flagship news broadcast. BBC News at Ten has since gone on to become the most watched news programme in Britain. Along with David Dimbleby, he also presents various special programmes such as the Festival of Remembrance, Trooping the Colour and the State Opening of Parliament. He led the BBC commentary team at the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, 2012 London Olympics and 2014 Commonwealth Games. He has presented several election specials, including coverage of the National Assembly for Wales election, 2007 for BBC Wales, and also the BBC coverage of the United States elections, 2008 results and the inauguration of Barack Obama. He was formerly Chief Political Correspondent for BBC News, and spent more than 14 years reporting politics from Westminster across a range of BBC programmes.

He has also presented or contributed to a range of other BBC News programmes, including Breakfast News, One O'Clock News, Newsnight and Panorama. Since April 2006, Edwards has presented the newly established BBC News at Five O'Clock on the 24-hour BBC News channel. On 29 April 2011 he presented the BBC coverage of the Wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton. The coverage was watched by 20 million viewers at peak in the United Kingdom[4] and the team won a BAFTA Award for Best Coverage of a Live Event.[5][6] He is to share election nights from 2014 with David Dimbleby and from 2020 he will be the sole presenter it was confirmed in 2014.

Other programming and appearances[edit]

Although predominantly a news journalist, Edwards has presented a wide range of programming on television and radio, including documentaries on classical music, religion, and the Welsh language, of which he is a native speaker, and hosted various events such as the BAFTA Cymru award ceremonies.[7] He has a particular interest in history and has presented documentaries on many historical subjects, including Owain Glyn Dwr, the south Wales Valleys, Gladstone and Disraeli, and a series following the work of the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales.

He presented Bread of Heaven with Huw Edwards, a documentary about the impact of religion in Wales which won the 2005 BAFTA Cymru for best documentary and nominations in four other categories.[8] He has also appeared as himself in cameo in the television series Absolute Power, and in an episode of Doctor Who, where he fronted coverage of a fictionalised 2012 Olympics. He also appeared reading the BBC News in the James Bond film, Skyfall.

In January 2008 he introduced a special Songs of Praise programme in celebration of the organ, both playing the instrument and demonstrating some of the stops to be found on it.

In September 2008 the BBC Trust ruled that a documentary presented by Edwards on the subject of Welsh politics had broken the organisation's editorial guidelines. The programme, titled "Wales: Power And The People - Back To The Future" addressed the topic of The Welsh Assembly, with Edwards stating: "to achieve its full potential it needs even greater support for the people of Wales than it’s received so far" and "The more people that take part, the stronger and healthier our democracy in Wales will be." Following a complaint, the governing body concluded that Edwards' words were not objective and even-handed on the subject stating "it is not the role of BBC presenters to encourage audiences to exercise their right to vote on particular occasions.” It was also found that the documentary as a whole was biased against the Conservative Party.[9][10][11]

In 2010 Edwards presented a programme titled The Prince And The Plotter about the investiture of the Prince of Wales, receiving the "Best on Screen presenter" at the BAFTA Cymru Awards for his work.[12]

In February 2012 he launched a new historical documentary series made by BBC Wales, entitled The Story of Wales.[13]

Non-BBC activities[edit]

In March 2011, he also made an appearance to open Swansea University's "Hoffi Coffi" cafe in the library, which has been created to support the aims of Academi Hywel Teifi, after Huw's father spent his academic career at the university. He gave a speech in Welsh as he unveiled a wall mural of a poem by Tudur Hallam, Professor of Welsh at the university and chair of last year's Eisteddfod. Mr Edwards said it was a moving tribute to his father.[14] In 2003, he was made a Fellow of the University of Wales and, in 2007, he became Honorary Professor of Journalism at Cardiff University.[15]

In April 2009, he was elected Vice-President of Cardiff University. In 2005, he was appointed Patron of the National College of Music. In October 2008, he accepted appointment as President of the London Welsh Trust, which runs the London Welsh Centre.[16]

Personal life[edit]

He is married to Vicky Flind, a BBC producer.[1] They have five children Dan, Sammy, Amos, Rebecca and Hannah they all live in Dulwich, London.[17]

Awards[edit]

Year Award Representative Work Result
2001 BAFTA Cymru Best Onscreen Presenter Won
2002 BAFTA Cymru Best Onscreen Presenter[18] Won
2003 BAFTA Cymru Best Onscreen Presenter[7] The Exchange Won
2004 BAFTA Cymru Best Onscreen Presenter[19] The Story of Welsh Won
2005 BAFTA Cymru Best Onscreen Presenter[8] Won
2010 BAFTA Cymru Best Onscreen Presenter[12] The Prince And The Plotter Won
2012 BAFTA Cymru Best Onscreen Presenter[20] Llanelli Riots - Fire In The West Nominated

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Williamson, Nigel (11 May 2008). "My Best Teacher - Interview: Huw Edwards". Times Educational Supplement. 
  2. ^ "BBC - South West Wales - Hall of Fame". BBC. Archived from the original on 3 May 2013. 
  3. ^ "Hywel Teifi Edwards dies aged 75". BBC News. 5 January 2010. 
  4. ^ "Royal Wedding BBC Viewing Figures". bbc.co.uk. 
  5. ^ "Television Awards Winners in 2012". bafta.org. 
  6. ^ Robinson, James (19 December 2010). "Huw Edwards: The country's master of ceremonies". The Guardian (London). 
  7. ^ a b "Court drama scoops awards". BBC. 27 April 2003. 
  8. ^ a b "Ifans clinches Bafta 'Grand Slam'". BBC. 24 April 2005. 
  9. ^ Revoir, Paul. "BBC rapped by its own watchdog over 'biased' Thatcher show". Daily Mail (London). 
  10. ^ BBC Wales rapped for bias over Thatcher programme. - Free Online Library
  11. ^ "Editorial Standards Findings". BBC. September 2008. Retrieved 16 July 2014. 
  12. ^ a b "Press Office - BBC Cymru Wales takes 11 top honours at BAFTA Cymru Awards". BBC. 24 May 2010. 
  13. ^ BBC - Wales History: Huw Edwards on retelling the story of Wales
  14. ^ "Huw's full of beans at Welsh coffee shop honouring father". Thisissouthwales.co.uk. 
  15. ^ "Honorary Professorship". Cardiff University. Retrieved 25 July 2008. 
  16. ^ "Our Former Presidents: London Welsh Centre". London Welsh Centre website. London Welsh Centre. 2010. Retrieved 4 February 2011. 
  17. ^ Interview on BBC London news, 15 January 2007.
  18. ^ "MacArthur voyage earns Welsh Baftas". BBC. 25 May 2002. 
  19. ^ "Bafta winners celebrate awards". BBC. 24 April 2004. 
  20. ^ "British Academy Cymru Awards Winners in 2012". BAFTA Cymru. 7 September 2012. 

External links[edit]

News items[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
Anna Ford
Main Presenter of BBC News at Six
(BBC One)

1999 – 2003
Succeeded by
George Alagiah & Sophie Raworth
Preceded by
Peter Sissons
Main Presenter of BBC News at Ten
(BBC One)

2003 – present
Succeeded by
Incumbent
Preceded by
None
Main Presenter of BBC News at Five
(BBC News Channel)

2006 – present
Succeeded by
Incumbent