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Simon Groom
Born (1950-08-12) 12 August 1950 (age 73)
Nationality British
Education Herbert Strutt Grammar School, Derbyshire
Alma mater University of Birmingham
Occupation Television presenter
Television Blue Peter (1978-1986)

Simon Groom (born 12 August 1950) is a British producer and director. He was a presenter of Blue Peter from 1978 to 1986.

Early life

Groom was born in Chesterfield in Derbyshire, and was brought up on a farm in Dethick, which he later often visited for Blue Peter reports. He was educated at Herbert Strutt Grammar School in Belper, Derbyshire, followed by the University of Birmingham.


Blue Peter

Groom worked briefly as an English teacher, before becoming a disc jockey and joining Blue Peter in 1978. Groom's co-presenters on Blue Peter were Lesley Judd, John Noakes, Christopher Wenner, Tina Heath, Peter Duncan, Sarah Greene, Janet Ellis and Michael Sundin.

Groom became known among the programme's production team for his dry humour and ability to ad lib innuendo in his broadcasting (which would pass over the heads of the programme's main audience of children). One such statement was at the end of a piece on a replacement door knocker at Durham Cathedral, declaring "what a beautiful pair of knockers". Another remark followed a piece about hedge maintenance, in which he closed with the remark, "As long as you have a decent length to start with, well then you can manage a good lay", much to the irritation of producer Biddy Baxter.

Other work

After leaving Blue Peter, Groom hosted a morning show on BBC Radio Bedfordshire. In 1992, he released a cover version of Elvis Presley's hit "Can't Help Falling in Love" on his own record label. Groom produced his first TV documentary, Angels & Devils, a critically acclaimed biopic of film director Ken Russell, reviewed as 'Pick of the Day' in both The Daily Telegraph and The Guardian. Groom also wrote, directed and produced A Steamy Affair: the Story of the Flying Scotsman for Channel 4. His other television documentaries include Bucking Mad, the story of an English rodeo rider, and Full Circle: the Saving of Derby's Roundhouse, both broadcast by the BBC.

Groom has also produced and presented documentaries for BBC Radio Four, including George Oliver: A Man For All Seasons, the story of a Bedfordshire gamekeeper; Peak Park Pressures (about Britain's first national park); and Ferry Across the Mekong: two Sony Award-nominated thirty minute programmes in which Groom makes a return trip to Cambodia. In 1979, he was one of the earliest Western journalists to enter the country, following the end of Pol Pot's regime.

Groom's documentary The Flying Scotsman: A Rail Romance, was transmitted on BBC Two in March 2013. The 60 minute programme, a co-production with Available Light Productions, has since been repeated twice on the channel.

Personal life

Groom has worked as an ambassador for the city of Derby, and in 2010 was given an honorary degree by the University of Derby in recognition of his contribution to broadcasting.

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