RICK JACKSON: My long-term bid to become the Fred Dinenage of radio

Broadcasting legend

Fred Dinenage    Picture: Malcolm Wells (141209-0357) PPP-140425-154506001Broadcasting legend

Fred Dinenage    Picture: Malcolm Wells (141209-0357) PPP-140425-154506001
Broadcasting legend Fred Dinenage Picture: Malcolm Wells (141209-0357) PPP-140425-154506001
Radio presenting has always been a cut-throat way to earn a living. I've seen many people I have seen come and go, many with big reputations.

I’m now in my 24th year of broadcasting here in the south and I always remember getting some career advice from a friend and Radio 1 producer: if you want longevity, become the Fred Dinenage of radio on the


I’d seen many a colleague jump for joy at landing a slot in London. Now all of them no longer work in the industry or have moved from station to station after spending a couple of years in the big smoke.

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In many ways, it’s like football. A manager fancies you and brings you into his team. The audience figures might not be what they want, so he’s fired and a new manager comes in and he doesn’t fancy you.

Radio presenters are all self-employed on yearly contacts, so if things aren’t going so well, they can be moved on. Similarly, if our figures are going through the roof, we can say ‘adios’ and head for a bigger


I’ve found my natural home at Wave 105. There is no other station like it in the UK where presenters have the freedom just to get on and do what they do best, communicate.

What’s also different about Wave is that presenters never leave.

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I was still the new boy after nine years until Simon Clarke decided to take early retirement at the BBC!

Our new boy is local and was tempted by the bright lights of London, but made rather a success of it.

Tony Shepherd is from Chichester and worked for Southern FM in Brighton before working on Capital Radio’s breakfast show for many years. He was the one who interviewed the stars on the red carpet at the Oscars or in Leicester Square. He was also the one who would report into my old breakfast show on Power FM back in the day, so I was delighted when I knew he was joining the team.

After almost 10 years, it’s nice to no longer be the new boy!


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The front door was open and our children were nowhere to be seen. Sheer panic!

It’s Saturday morning, I’d collected the milk and bread from the front of the house while the kids went through to the kitchen.

With the usual amount of hullabaloo we had toast then went into the conservatory to play. Later they went into the lounge to play with the doll’s house.

It was later that Sarah asked where the kids were because the front door was open.

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As I sprinted down our road, I noticed Holly carrying a handbag, skipping along semi-naked as she’d removed her trousers and pants. She was being swiftly followed by her brother Freddie, happily laughing away. I did not

find it funny.


My 70-year old father-in-law has a new toy. He is now bombing about the place in a John Cooper Works Mini.

This is the hottest of the hottest Minis. This light, nimble little car has an engine producing 210 horsepower, more than twice as much as cars twice the size.

It’s his baby. He’s always outside polishing it, checking it, fine-tuning it. Honestly he might as well apply a nappy and dab some Sudocrem on it!

He turned up at our house the other day, in his baseball cap. I wanted to turn it around the other way and hand him a gangster rap CD to complete his new image.

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