I’ve compered many events for companies over the years, but I’ve never compered a bonfire night before. Until now.

On November 4th I was at the global headquarters of Boots to run the stage at their 7th annual fireworks night.
It was for their staff, but as Boots is such a massive company, there were over four thousand there.
I was the MC on the night alongside Radio Derby’s Johnny Kinch.

A great time was had by all. Johnny has a great voice and serenaded the crowd with some great tunes. Highlight of the night was probably his duet with EMT weather man and One Show reporter Des Coleman. Both those boys can sing.
Low point was my rendition of Delilah. I’ve heard Stoke City fans sing it more tunefully than I managed, but I was trying to encourage people up onto the stage to do some karaoke. If I’d been good they wouldn’t have felt comfortable coming up. Was I any good? Let’s just say lots of people felt they could do better and we had a queue of willing participants all night.

A local band called The Fakers came up to do some songs and went down a storm. I had to keep interrupting them because we had a three year old girl who’d lost her parents. Much as I was enjoying their Brit pop covers, nothing is more important than a lost child. The biggest cheer of the night came when we found the parents. The Fakers were very good about my interruptions.

Best of all the people from Boots were happy and you can read the comments on my testimonial page above.


Tim Gard with me

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Tim Gard pic

Picture courtesy of

Here’s my interview with Tim Gard, the brilliant American speaker.  He’d just come off stage at the PSA 2009 convention in Marlow. His after dinner set was hilarious.  For me it was extra special because it was my birthday, and Tim invited eight fellow speakers onto the stage and they played Happy Birthday for me on nose whistles!
It wasn’t the most tuneful version, but I will always remember it.

I’d been invited to speak about humour at the convention before I knew that Tim was headlining the event.  It was a bit like being asked to talk about physics and then finding Stephen Hawking is also on the bill.  Fortunately my ‘Putting the ‘U’ in Humour’ workshop was well received and I was delighted when Tim came and found me to give me a copy of his book.

Anyway, enough of the praise, here’s the interview.