I have found a little more time to work on my plan. As with all Arts Council Awards, budget is paramount. I spent a little time looking for presenters for my gala event. Obviously Michael Aspel was my first choice but, having heard that he had been unwell, I was preparing myself to be satisfied with Dale Winton or even Jim Bowen. I was delighted however to find that "Radio City" (the celebrity booking agency) still had him on their books for a very reasonable appearance fee of between £6000 and £10,000. Jim Bowen was cheaper. I wonder how these figures are arrived at? Anyway Aspel's bio seems eminently suitable, I have sent an enquiry as to his availability:
Michael Aspel's career began as a radio actor with the BBC in Cardiff in 1954.
He became a nationally known personality on both television and radio, firstly as a television newsreader and, subsequently, as a presenter of numerous television and radio programmes including Family Favourites, Miss World, Crackerjack, Personal Cinema, Aspel And Company, Today, After Seven, Star Games, Ask Aspel, Eric & Ernie's Variety Days, Ultra Quiz and the Bafta Awards.
Michael entered into an exclusive contract with London Weekend Television to present several programmes including The 6 O'clock Show, Child's Play, and his talk show Aspel And Company, and he has presented several specials in The Trouble With
Subsequently, he presented Strange
But True? about the supernatural and Caught On Camera where extraordinary events were recorded in film and video.
He hosted ITN's V.E. Day Programme in May 1995, along with Lights Camera Action for ITV which was a series of six programmes to celebrate the centenary of the cinema.
Michael currently hosts two of BBC ONE's longest running and successful shows. He succeeded Eammon Andrews as presenter of This Is Your Life and then took over from Hugh Scully as presenter of the Antiques Roadshow.
Over the years, Michael has been voted Variety Club ITV Personality of the Year and TV Times Television Personality of the Year. He has appeared in several pantomimes, co-starred in a run of Say Who You Are and has narrated Side By Side By Sondheim.
Michael was awarded the OBE in 1993 for services to broadcasting and was recently voted into the Royal Television Society Hall of Fame for outstanding services to television.
In the studio, I have been working on some rough designs of auditoria suitable for the execution of my plan. I am hoping for a little cinematic grandeur.