Thursday 31 March 2011

Earth from the Edge of Space

One of the stories on the latest University of Sheffield alumni email not only took my breath away but also provided me with an excellent interview for the breakfast programme on BBC Radio Derby. Two PHD students built a helium balloon fitted with cameras and launched it into the atmosphere to record the earth from the edge of space at a cost of just £350. The video they made is well worth watching... I noticed that one of the two, Chris Rose, is from Derbyshire and they launched the balloon from Ashbourne. This provided more than enough justification for setting up the story for breakfast show. Here's the interview with the presenter Phil Trow...

Thursday 24 March 2011

Audio Wedding

My friend (and best man) Matt Willis and I gave our friends Joel and Issy an unusual wedding present - an audio diary of their special day. Our edit lasts 47 minutes but here is our 5 minute, cut down version...
Joel and Issy's Wedding short by markansell

I hope you enjoyed it. Matt and I have even considered setting up a business offering engaged couples this service. After all, it's more intimate than a video of the wedding, and the pictures are better of course!

In case you'd like to hear more, here's the full version:

Joel and Issy's Wedding by markansell

Saturday 12 March 2011

Reporting on Travellers' Story

A group of Irish travellers in rural South Derbyshire have had their application for planning permission to live on a field in Church Broughton rejected. They bought the land and started living in caravans there without planning permission so applied after the council put a stop notice on the development.

It's well known in the journalism world that travellers do not often agree to speak to the media so I was very pleased to gain their trust so that they were happy to be interviewed.

I made a package on their story before South Derbyshire District Council made their decision to reject planning permission (As well as the package, we also interviewed a local councillor on the BBC Radio Derby breakfast show to ensure that our coverage was balanced)... I also did a live report on the story soon after they moved to the village in November 2010...

Friday 4 March 2011

Hot Tub Mascot

One of the most enjoyable aspects of being the radio car reporter is the range of stories I get to cover.

Hard news is what you live for as a reporter but it's great to be able to do some light hearted stories from time to time. Serious stories often tell themselves (you stick to telling the listener the hard facts) whereas lighter stories offer the opportunity to be more creative. Today, for example, I reported from a hot tub...

Podcast Powered By Podbean

And the other day I went to Derbyshire County Cricket Club as they're in search of someone to be the mascot. I gave it a go...

Podcast Powered By Podbean

I've made some changes to the blog - a new name: 'Behind The Stories' which sums up more accurately what I'm writing about and a new, more exciting design. After three and a half years, I felt it was time for the blog to be refreshed. I hope you like what you see.