Category Archives: People

VT Tea

Peter Neill has just sent the following:-

Dear VT Old Boys,
A few of you will remember me – most won’t know me from Adam, but I worked in the VT Library as Mike Scott’s assistant for 6 months in 1964/65.
I then moved to tech ops and then the South East region where, 49 years later I still do the odd shift!
But VT was my first job and I always remember those few months with fondness.
A while ago a friend suggested the idea of a VT Tea mug and, after a couple of false starts I’ve found a supplier who can do a reasonable representation of the paper cup. It was intended as a one-off for myself, but a few people have expressed interest, so I thought I’d see how many were interested before placing a proper order.
They’re a bit bigger than the old paper cups, and I’m going to tweak the artwork so it fits better – and round the ornery of the BBC logo. Made of china and double-walled (so they can be held quite comfortably even with very hot contents) they come with a black (or possibly white) rubber lid and will work out at about £6 each (I don’t plan to make a profit on them).
If anyone is interested, please e-mail me at
Peter Neill (120454N)

Familiar faces

Ian Norman sent me a video of a live transmission from VT on Saturday, March 14th 1981. He was the cameraman for Swap Shop (Ikegami HL79) – you can find the full version in The 1980s under Swap Shop and in Programmes under VT on TV.

Two instantly recognisable faces in the still above, Murray Needham & Mick Goodenough, but take a look at the still below.

The first still is of the hexaplexer desk, with Al Goddard driving VT10, but who is the editor on VT9 (updating Grandstand titles) and who is the Sports PA?

John Paroussi – Funeral Arrangements

Dave Rixon has sent me the final details of John’s funeral:-

I have now heard from John’s sister Kay (via Chris Tandy)  and the funeral will take place next Thursday September 12th in the Milton Room of the Chilterns Crematorium, Amersham from 15.15.

then afterwards at Missenden Abbey

They have requested no flowers, but donations to the Thames Valley and Chiltern Air Ambulance

John Paroussi RIP

It is with a very heavy heart that I pass on this email from Caroline Judson (via Ian Williams)

Al Dixon has just come over (he is editing Holby) and said that Pat Paroussi has rung him to say that John has collapsed and died on a tennis court. They tried to revive him but were unsuccessful.

All a bit of a shock really I thought he played regularly.

I will pass on further information as I receive it.

Nial Brown Update

I’ve just received this from Sarah, Nial’s wife:-

Hi – I’ve been meaning to write an update for Nial for ages – sorry I’ve been a bit rubbish at that but in my defence I have never in my life been so busy! So Nial is doing really well – he’s improved in all ways since he got out of hospital. I won’t say it’s not been very tough, but I’ve got great faith in the wee man – as we all know he has the motivation and necessary obsessive streak to play the very long game that we have to play. The nice weather’s helped a bit too! He’s got a fairly gruelling routine – not quite as many therapy sessions as Penny thought, but something most days and masses of practice with me in between. Loads of really dull repetitive exercises to try to teach the right brain to make contact with his right side, and to stretch out all the damage that can take place in the muscles after a stroke. I’ve never before appreciated the skill of a physio, but it really is an amazing thing. He also has to submit himself to a hour a day of mild electrocution to his arm and hand – again to try to get the muscles and brain to speak to each other, and the physio is going to try out this kind of mechanical glove on him, which artificially gives you some movement so again you can do an exercise over and over and try to make contact with the right brain that way. Speech therapy is the same – tons of repetition every day. You may now have all dropped off – this is the limit of my conversation these days! Nial’s working really hard at keeping himself positive – I hope he will be able to keep that going for as long as it will take, but we do still have a laugh. We are both so grateful to everyone who has rallied round for us, and to everyone who has donated to the therapy fund – I just can’t believe how generous and caring you all are. He will get better because of you all – simple as that…