Cameraman based in Edinburgh, employed by ITN, working for ITV's Good Morning Britain covering stories all over the UK and the world. War Zones, World Cups, Royal Tours and many other less exciting assignments, like interviewing current and ex Prime Ministers have kept me busy over the years working in Breakfast Television since GMTV came on the scene back in '93 and regional TV before that. In 2009 I began to record what it is like to work, the often strange and long hours needed to bring the hard news, human interest and fluffy fun to the UK's TV screens in the morning, mostly broadcasting live.

Thursday, 20 August 2009

Rain Rain Rain for the Lockerbie Bomber.

Thursday 20th August

When I looked out of my cosy hotel bedroom window at around 4:30am I was relieved that the horrid rain that had accompanied me on my drive to Greenock last night and battered the windows during the night had stopped.

The streets were still a bit wet but that was OK.

Somebody somewhere must have done one stonking rain dance because by the time we were gathered outside Greenock Prison to do our broadcasts the rain was dumping on us in gallons.

The rain was so bad that it wiped out our satellite signal preventing us doing our first broadcast at the beginning of the GMTV programme at 6am.

Even at full power Steve the satellite engineer could not get the signal to punch its way through the rain and the heavy clouds and reach the satellite up there in space.

The Dish Trying to Force the Signal Through Rain and Clouds.

The Digi Link Reciever at the Back of the Truck

As the Light is Coming up the Rain is Coming Down Outside the Prison.

The shot I had of Richard Gaisford was just dreadful. 

As soon as I uncovered the lens it was soaked. 

It got so wet that it became almost impossible to wipe the constant deluge of water off the lens.

Then when it was kind of clear it started to smear and steam up.

In the increasing daylight the shot looked quite literally all washed out.

We did a few little news broadcasts and teases at the top of the hours. 

We did not go out into position until the last possible moment and as soon as the broadcasts were finish we scurried even wetter than drowned rats back to the shelter of the sat truck.

I was so glad that we had to do our broadcasts on the opposite side of the road from where the truck was parked because it was not possible to lay a cable over the road for both practical and health and safety reasons.

We would be using the Digi Link. So no wet cables to deal with.

The weather was so bad where we were and so nice further down south that the GMTV gallery wanted to show contrasting shots from us and the Oval in London in the weather forecasts.

Of course the only let up in the rain for the whole time we were on air was for a moment or so before during and after I did the weather shot!

Tartan Brolly? Well You are in Scotland Richard.

Sky's James Mathews gets a bit of Shelter Under his Branded Brolly.

The BBC Scotland Brolly Also Makes itself Useful.

Between Broadcasts Richard Shelters in the Truck.

The thought of a nice warm breakfast was getting us all quite excited when we finished the last GMTV broadcast.

We would soon be tucking into hot toast and slurping away at piping hot tea.

Then we got a call to ask if we could so a quick live broadcast for Al Jazeera.

Putting thoughts of dry feet and warm food aside Andy the sound recordist set up and waited for the Al Jazeera reporter to arrive.

At least the rain had eased enough to make the picture a little more acceptable.

ITN switched talk back and we were listening to Al Jazeera from Kuala Lumpur.

The reporter stood in front of the camera as the producer said, “we’ll be coming to you in less than three minutes.”

Nazanine Moshiri went over her script and then delivered it on cue from the presenter in Kuala Lumpur.

When she had done that she did another piece to 

Al Jazeera's Nazanine Moshiri Checks her Script....

...and then Records the Voice Over.

As soon as she was finished Andy and I said our good-byes and put the kit away.

Dripping wet Andy, Richard, Steve and I wet footed it to the hotel for a well earned warm.

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