Don't miss a story sign up to Exmouth Journal's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Topsham producer’s 36 years of Blue Peter

09:23 12 November 2012

Former Blue Peter producer Alex Leger (right) with presenter Simon Thomas and Bishop Willy Pwaisiho while filming in the Solomon Islands in 2002.

Former Blue Peter producer Alex Leger (right) with presenter Simon Thomas and Bishop Willy Pwaisiho while filming in the Solomon Islands in 2002.

Archant

A Topsham TV producer, who spent more than 30 years working on classic children’s show Blue Peter, has published a memoir of his career.

Alex Leger, 65, is the author of Blue Peter: Behind The Badge, which covers 36 years during which Alex was often responsible for the show’s most iconic reports from around the world.

Alex, who first moved to Topsham when he was three, and returned around 25 years ago, served as an Army officer before moving into television.

Having started off working with Blue Peter legends John Noakes, Peter Purves and Lesley Judd, he subsequently worked with every one of the 30 or so presenters who followed them until his retirement last year.

When asked why he decided to write the book, Alex said: “It was like falling off a cliff when I stopped [working on Blue Peter]. I didn’t want to go to [new BBC headquarters] Salford, so I thought it was a good time to leave, and I thought the only thing to do would be to write about it.

“I thought it would be quite a cathartic experience, and 132,000 words later the cathartic experience is complete.”

As a ‘film producer’, rather than a ‘studio producer’, Alex’s job saw him filming the Blue Peter presenters on their many adventures around the world, producing famous films such as John Noakes climbing Nelson’s Column, Simon Groom reporting from famine-hit Ethiopia, and Caron Keating in Cambodia.

Alex said: “It was a proper merry go round for about 36 years, sort of living the dream of if you think it, you can do it.

“All the memories are best in their own particular way. The best bits in the book are really when something didn’t go off as expected, raised my curiosity, or made me particularly fearful – there are fearful moments and happy moments.”

A personal highlight for Alex came in 2002, when he filmed a series of programmes in the Solomon Islands, where he had previously worked as a volunteer after leaving school.

Joining Alex and presenter Simon Thomas on the trip was Bishop Willy Pwaisiho, who Alex had met in the Solomons as a young man, and who had since become a rector near Macclesfield.

“That was wonderful in terms of being able to realise a dream to go back to this exotic, amazing place. I was reunited with my past and relived some fairly interesting memories with Willy, and Simon Thomas, who I always got on with extremely well.

“Being a producer always allowed me to visit places tourists didn’t go, or weren’t allowed to go, and the Solomons was typical of that.”

Alex’s book is only available online at www.bluepeterbook.co.uk, or there are some copies available at Topsham Bookshop.

0 comments

Other News Stories

Colin Long chairman of the Topsham pool with the President Cyryl Harrison. Ref ext 02-16TI 9300. Picture: Terry Ife

Topsham Swimming Pool is set to receive a cash boost from Devon county councillor Andrew Leadbetter, as part of an ongoing fight to keep the facility open

Read more
10:00

People will have the chance to quiz police during a drop-in session at the town’s library on Wednesday, February 17.

Read more
Pictured: Assistant Shop Manager Judy Prytherch (left) and Shop Manager Sue Redfern (right) outside the new store.

The Devon Air Ambulance Trust (DAAT) charity shop is on the move to larger premises - because of its popularity.

Read more
Yesterday, 16:30
Budleigh Croquet Club. Ref exb 1326-19-07SH

Members of Budleigh Croquet Club have said farewell to their groundsman after 31 years in the role.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:30

A new solar farm on the edge of Brixington has been approved by district planners.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:30
Close-up of woman's mouth

The potential amount of money that could be saved is the equivalent to 364,000 dental check-ups.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:30
French flag

The next meeting of the Budleigh Salterton Anglo-French Society will be taking place on Monday, February 15, at 7.30pm.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:00
Ollie the mind-reading Llama and his owner, Maggie Jee of Peak Hill Llamas. Ref shs 05-16AW 8687. Picture: Alex Walton

Sidmouth animal’s strange powers of prediction

Read more
Yesterday, 11:00
Ollie the mind-reading Llama and his owner, Maggie Jee of Peak Hill Llamas. Ref shs 05-16AW 8675. Picture: Alex Walton

‘Sidmouth animal can read minds’, says owner

Read more
Yesterday, 10:08

The jury has been discharged in the case of a motorcyclist from Exmouth accused of causing the death of his pillion passenger in a crash.

Read more

Local Weather

Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 7°C

min temp: 3°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Advertise in the Paper
Submit a Story
Subscriptions Order
Competitions
Photo Orders
Family notices
iwitness24
Google Plus
Facebook
Twitter
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the Exmouth Journal e-edition E-edition

Local business directory

Exmouth's trusted business finder

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists


Find planning applications