So, you think you’ve made it through January with a smile on your face and you can see the light of February at the end of the long grey tunnel, then you wake to hear the sad news that the legendry Sir Terry Wogan has passed. What a way to start to a dull, wet Sunday.
I met Sir Terry on a few occasions. I was lucky enough to work with him on both ‘Richard & Judy’ and ‘Saturday Kitchen’. I will never forget being put in charge of him when he came on R&J around 10 years ago. We would conduct research chats with all our guests to make sure we were up to speed on the ins and outs of their career. I remember being told that Sir Terry had my mobile number and that he would call when he finished his BBC Radio 2 breakfast show. After being tied to my desk for much of the morning, I had to answer the call of nature and when I returned, I saw that I had a missed call on my mobile phone and a new answer phone message. It’s not every day that you receive a voicemail from the likes of Mr Wogan, but on this occasion I had. It brought a smile to my face.
We met again when he came on ‘Saturday Kitchen’ in the autumn of 2014. His charm and personality shone as strongly as it did the first time we met. I invited my husband Alan to the studio as he has been a life long fan and there has always been a running joke that Mr Wogan was actually his real father. There is an uncanny resemblance and their wit and voices aren’t dissimilar. Only Mary O’Shea of Malahide can tell us the real truth on that one! I heard Sir Terry was seen in the environs of North County Dublin with a bunch of flowers in his hand on more than one occasion in the summer of 1974. 😉
Back to reality, it’s always a pleasure having a guest on SK the who enjoys their food and enjoys their time in the studio with us. Sir Terry was one of those people. He left you wishing that you could spend more time with him. I found myself wishing that he was my uncle! But in a way, he’s everybody’s uncle because we all grew up with his voice on our radios and his smiling face on the tellies. With all those priceless 80s interviews and the many sharp tongued Eurovision observations. We will never forget them. He will forever be part of all of our families.
We love you Sir Terry and in our house we are toasting your life and career with a rather elegant oaked Chardonnay from the South of France: Classy but a little bit cheeky, just like you. So as the curtain closes on January 2016, our lasting memory will be that you’re no longer with us. We miss you already and thank you for all the smiles.