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

Gallery: Summer in 1976

Yesterday, 14:57
Exmouth in August 1976. Exmouth town centre. Ref exe 30-16AW Exmouth from 1976 03. Picture: Archant Archives

A look back at Exmouth 40 years ago

Read more
Yesterday, 14:53
Exeter Crown Court. Picture by Alex Walton.

A man who threatened his Exmouth girfriend with a knife has been shown mercy by a judge after it was revealed he is still struggling with the sudden death of his previous partner and two children

Read more
Yesterday, 12:08
NATIONAL EXPRESS - 45 YEARS OLD
Pictured the August 7th 1965 Wedding Photo Album of Brian Lewis & Patricia Cavanagh at St Clements Church. The Photographic album was handed in after being found at Birmingham Coach Station and National Express would like to reunite the album with the family
FOR FURTHER DETAILS CONTACT: Ros Golds on  0121 460 8419 / 07825 976 593 or rosalyn.golds@nationalexpress.com
Picture by Adam Fradgley

A coach company is appealing to reunite a wedding album with its rightful owner – ahead of what would be the couple’s 51st anniversary.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:38
Ref mhz Honiton Show promo.

Porkies family butchers are giving away a £50 voucher for your best picture

Read more
Yesterday, 06:30
Budleigh film-maker Nick Eriksson

A Budleigh Salterton film-maker is hoping his directing debut will lead to him rubbing shoulders with Hollywood superstars.

Read more
Tue, 12:57
Trish Leake before her charity headshave on Saturday. Trish was raising money for Macmillan Cancer Support while she was sending her long locks to the Little Princess Trust. Ref exe 30-16SH 3069. Picture: Simon Horn.

Head shave for charity

Read more
Tue, 12:40
Actor Henry Cavill will take on the Commando Challenge

Superman actor Henry Cavill will take on some of the toughest endurance obstacles when he tackles the Commando Challenge, on Woodbury Common, in the autumn.

Read more
Tue, 12:30
Rose Lodge care home on Isca Road have received an outstanding CQC report. Manager Karen Bousher is pictured with colleagues and residents this week. Ref exe 29-16SH 2386. Picture: Simon Horn.

A double celebration for a Littleham dementia care community has been seven years in the making, according to its owner.

Read more
Tue, 06:30
Sir Admiral Mark Stanhope visits Tony Griffin of the Exmouth Sea Cadets to see how the new build is progressing. Ref exe 06-16AW 8741. Picture: Alex Walton

Community groups can benefit from an invitation by Exmouth Sea Cadets to use its new clubhouse.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 19°C

min temp: 16°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

Newsletter Sign Up

Local business directory

Exmouth's trusted business finder

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists


Find planning applications