My diary: from Brexit to Eggsit

A busy few days01 beach

What a week! Or rather, ten days. To start, we have to go back to 1975. My mum found this photo and sent it to me because I asked her, “What was I doing in June 1975?” The answer was that I was ten, and wearing trunks on a beach…


02 75dimble

…and this is why I asked. When I was in my swimming trunks, my colleague David Dimbleby was in a studio in his suit presenting the 1975 EU Referendum. 41 years later…


03 david-vine

Here we are together. Okay, a bit self-indulgent to mention it, but as a broadcaster you do live for moments like this: a historic broadcast in the company of an all-time great. We are together, along with my pal Emily Maitlis, for the BBC Referendum Results programme. David only slightly spoiled it when I asked him what he remembered about 1975, and he said: “Nothing at all.”


04 greentop

Somehow the photographer got into the ceiling and took this picture of the green ocean I swim in. Introduce CGI and this becomes Downing Street, or the House of Commons, or anywhere you want really. The great step forward is that an overhead projector now shows me a ghostly image of the graphic they are superimposing, so we no longer have to ask a man to paint outlines and crosses on the floor.


05 hat

I seem to remember once using this hat for a graphic about the Lib Dems. Well, after no-sleep Thursday and my programme on Radio 2 on Friday ― discussing Brexit, of course ― I head drowsily with my family to Kings Cross for the train to Grimsby. Martha, 12, carries the cowboy hat. To be explained!


06 stage

Grimsby, I am in you! Yes, we are here to meet Karen and Kevin. Onstage with my other child Anna, 9, who has been invited by them to dance in their show. The cowboy hat is needed for a certain tango… yep, this really is shaping up to be a crazy week.


07 hair

And this is probably my favourite photo from it. Even though she is hyper-busy, Karen finds time to do Anna’s hair. What a great experience for my little one (as I still think of her!) ― she has been rehearsing and rehearsing her two-minute dance to Lukas Graham’s “7 Years”. It’ll be her first time in front of a really big audience and I can tell this is a huge day for her.


08 group hug

Just before the curtains open, Karen and Kevin give us all an encouraging talk. The two nearest the camera are Giovanni Pernice (who danced with Georgia on Strictly), and Patrick Helm, one of the Strictly choreographers who became a great mate while I was on the show.


08b kk stage

Cue raise-the-roof cheering! What I hugely admire about K&K is that this part of the year, the non-Strictly months, they have to run completely by themselves ― and it’s a massive thing to book and sell tickets for two nights in a place this size. That’s 2,600 seats and people have come from all over the country.


09 kk intro

And what dancers. The way these two work together ― as husband and wife, but also a dancing couple ― is so instinctive. Now I know a tiny bit about about dancing, I can pick out some small things: Kevin’s foot speed (how does he do that?) and the cleanness and precision of Karen’s arm movements. Oh, and that high kick. Amazing, amazing.

PS Anna was nervous ― but her dance went brilliantly and she got a standing ovation.


sb10064813ag-001.jpg Durham Cathedral, County Durham, England, UK

After Grimsby, back to London for five days of Radio 2 ― reflecting on Brexit, of course ― and then my spiritual home, Durham. This cathedral blows my mind every time I see it.
11 oscars

I am here to support the Master of Hatfield College, Professor Tim Burt, a hugely popular figure who has now done 20 years in charge of the college. He has kindly put me on his table with his wife Liz. It’s a dinner with 30% students (or recent graduates) and the rest drawn from alumni from years gone by. The atmosphere is ― good, to say the least.


12 selfie

As you can see from the selfies!


13 quiz

Heading from Durham to Glasgow for another block of Eggheads-recordings. So now I have to parent long-distance ― my wife Rachel is doing the heavy lifting close up ― and I send my eldest this quiz question based on all the trouble in the Conservative party. Go on, Martha, have a go. Your prize will be an Agatha Christie…


14 eggs

Glasgow. It’s a bit unusual, this Eggheads series. We are meeting new male and female quizzers who might have what it takes to be permanent Eggheads. Forty people whittled down to two. Lots of quizzing, lots of Eggy fun.


15 script

It means I have to introduce the programme slightly differently, so I change the famous words at the start. This will be called MAKE ME AN EGGHEAD (its forerunner, presented by Dermot Murnaghan, was ARE YOU AN EGGHEAD?). It breaks the normal Eggheads routine and is brilliant fun to do.


16 nile

My daughter got the quiz question right — the answer was Sarah Vine — so I have sent her the prize! No spoilers please! When I was 12, I also read loads of Agatha Christies. It is a great tribute to the Queen of Crime that her writing has survived across the generations.

Have a great week yourself

Jeremy Vine official website


  • Samantha Brooks says:

    Wow, what a week that was!
    I was really disappointed we couldn’t come over to Grimsby (from Hull) for the shows.
    The insight into your varied week was really interesting, you do such varied things. Above all though, you seem like a top Dad with a lovely family

  • Archie Hancock says:

    Love your work Jeremy. An honest, approachable and friendly journalistic style which is endearing and fun. Keep up the good work.

  • Helen McLean says:

    Love to read how you incorporate your family life into your working life. How lovely to involve Martha in your Egg Head quiz. You are the model Dad…. !!! My favourite blogs were when you and Karen were practising for SCD… Which got me started ….. Am I ever glad that I did

  • Greg says:

    I’m a big fan Jeremy, listen to your show every day. I’m not in Glasgow at the moment but if you fancy going to a Rangers game next time you’re up let me know 🙂

    Hope the sun appears while you are in town!

  • Mike says:

    Great reading. You seem like a totally top bloke!!
    I love your radio show and I love Eggheads.
    Keep up the good work!!

  • Joan T says:

    Just love reading your blogs, as simple as that!x

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