||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (June 2010)|
|Born||Nicholas Andrew Argyll Campbell
10 April 1961
|Residence||Salford, Clapham, Kylerhea|
|Spouse(s)||Linda Larnach (formerly)
Christina "Tina" Ritchie (1997-)
Nicholas Andrew Argyll Campbell (born 10 April 1961) is a Scottish radio and television presenter and journalist, best known for presenting programmes such as the consumer affairs programme Watchdog from 2001 until 2009. Campbell is renowned for mentioning he was adopted all the time.
Campbell was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, and adopted at four days old. He was educated at the independent school Edinburgh Academy. His adoptive mother was a psychiatric social worker and his adoptive father a publisher of maps.
After graduating from the University of Aberdeen with a 2:1 in history, Campbell toyed with the idea of becoming an actor and got involved in commercial production for radio in order to gain his Equity card. At university, Campbell's best friend had been the actor Iain Glen. He worked at Northsound Radio in Aberdeen from 1981 to 1985, first as a jingle writer, before going on to host the breakfast show.
Campbell worked at London station Capital Radio from 1986–87, occasionally presented on Music Box and joined BBC Radio 1 in 1987, presenting a Saturday night show from 10pm-midnight. In early 1988, he took over the weekend early morning show from 6-8am from Simon Mayo and in October 1988 he presented the music and interview show which he named Into the Night, which went out from 10pm-midnight Monday to Thursday. Guests included political figures, with Campbell interviewing John Major in 1991, after Conservative Party chairman Chris Patten recommended the show to the Prime Minister when Radio 1 sent an invitation to No.10. He was also regularly joined by Frankie Howerd in the last years of the comedian's life. In August 1993, Campbell also took over a Sunday morning show from 10am-1pm, following the on-air resignation of Dave Lee Travis.
Campbell left the network briefly in October 1993 to care for his sick wife. In early 1994, he took over the weekday drivetime show from 4-7pm, and in 1995, he took over the afternoon show from 2-4pm. Campbell attracted a large audience, and when Radio 2 wanted a replacement for Jimmy Young, he revealed that he was the BBC's choice and detailed a series of meetings between himself and the controller of Radio 2. However, the BBC later claimed that Campbell had initiated the meetings himself, and his public revelations prompted the wrath of Greg Dyke.
Campbell left BBC Radio 1 in October 1997 and joined the news and sport network BBC Radio 5 Live, when offered the job by Roger Mosey the station's head. He presented the mid-morning programme on 5 Live for over 5 years before replacing Julian Worricker in the breakfast slot in January 2003, co-presenting initially with Victoria Derbyshire. From 2004 to 2011, he co-presented the programme with Shelagh Fogarty. In May 2011, Fogarty left the breakfast show and was replaced by Rachel Burden. Campbell joined the programme an hour later than Burden and continued on his own for an hour at the end when the show became a topical events phone-in. He also presented Watchdog and an interactive programme called Now You're Talking on the radio.
He regularly hosted Top of the Pops from 1988 to 1991 and again from 1994 to 1997. In the 1990s, Campbell fronted Central Weekend on Central Television in the English Midlands and Carlton Live in London with Richard Littlejohn and then Andrew Neil.
Campbell featured in an episode of Who Do You Think You Are? that aired 11 July 2007, where he is seen tracing his adoptive family's roots in Scotland and Australia.
Campbell started out as a jingle writer and when he was on BBC Radio 1 from 1987 to 1997, he wrote a lot of music for the station. He has written and co-produced a critically praised jazz swing album for singer and actor Mark Moraghan, Moonlight's Back in Style, released on Linn Records in September 2009. Campbell and Moraghan met on Just the Two of Us in 2006. Campbell is a company director of Mhor Music Ltd., an original music company producing bespoke and original music for feature film, television, corporate media, online content and ringtones; and Mhor Productions Ltd., a supplier of radio and television programming and broadcasting activities.
Campbell and Kate Robbins co-wrote and recorded an album, We're Just Passing Through, released on 7 July 2014.
Awards and honours
Campbell has won seven Sony Awards, including a Gold Award in 2007 for the Radio 5 Live Breakfast programme as Best News and Current Affairs Programme (with Shelagh Fogarty). In 2008, he received an Honorary Doctorate from the Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen.
Campbell met his first wife Linda Larnach, who was eight years older, in Scotland. He later nursed her through a cancer scare and ME, and took time out from his career. He was then criticised when he broke up with her and she gave interviews in which she said his career break had been a publicity stunt.
Campbell married his second wife, journalist Christina "Tina" Ritchie who is the former head of Virgin Radio News, in December 1997 in Kensington, and the couple have four daughters.
In 1989, during his first marriage, Campbell traced his birth mother and after having children of his own with Ritchie, Campbell decided to find his Irish biological father in 2002. Whereas his birth mother was from a Dublin Protestant family, his biological father was a Northern Irish Catholic thirteen years younger than her. He also discovered that his grandfather had been in the IRA at the time of Michael Collins, and his biological father had spent time in the fifties in the IRA and still clung to his Republican beliefs. Campbell's cousin, Anthony Hughes had also been in the IRA and was killed by British troops in Armagh in 1973.
In 2004, Campbell wrote Blue-Eyed Son [Story of an Adoption], his account of being adopted and tracing both his birth parents and his extended families in Ireland. Both sides of his birth families helped with and contributed to the book. His birth mother, Stella, died in 2007; Campbell spoke at her Dublin funeral. As a result of his book and his work in adoption, he was asked to become a Patron of the British Association for Adoption and Fostering (BAAF).
In popular culture
- "Oiling his wheel of fortune - The Scotsman". Thescotsman.scotsman.com. Retrieved 2010-06-09.
- "Rachel Burden announced as new 5 Live Breakfast presenter". BBC Press Office. Retrieved 27 May 2011.
- AM/FM Online Edition #16: October 1993
- "Nicky Campbell: My life in media". The Independent (London). 21 May 2007. Retrieved 5 May 2009.
- "Double take". BBC News. 31 May 2002. Retrieved 20 May 2010.
- Official Twitter
- 5 Live Breakfast at BBC Programmes
- His time at Radio 1 - including many audio clips
- Nicky Campbell at the Internet Movie Database
- Radio Rewind
- Linn Records
- BBC News - Anne Robinson returns to Watchdog
|Host of Wheel of Fortune
|Rector of the University of St Andrews
1991 - 1993