The one eyed darts player

Here’s a feature I did with darts player Jamie ‘Jabba’ Caven.

As a child he was stung by a bee and lost the sight in one eye. He still went onto become world youth darts champion.

As an adult he’s overcome pancreatic cancer which has left him diabetic.

Amazingly he’s risen against all those odds to become number eighteen in the world rankings. I went to his Derby home to meet the man they call Jabba.

Jeremy Nicholas, London, UK

Silent Movie

Here’s the latest in my And Finally TV reports.

I met a group who compose and perform music for classic silent movies.
They’re called the Southwell Collective and the movie featured is the 1928 French gothic horror, The Fall of the House of Usher, based on the novel by Edgar Allen Poe.

In the story a man is painting his wife. As the picture becomes more and more lifelike, so her health fails. As he finishes the portrait, she dies. It all goes downhill from there, she’s buried in a fancy coffin, which takes ages, and then the house burns down and she comes back to life, and it’s all a bit of a nightmare for the boy Usher, to be honest.

Watch out for my hilarious ‘usher’ torch gag,with a nod to the Blair Witch Project.

Jeremy Nicholas, London, UK

The Rocking Piano

I filmed a very interesting feature today with the designer of the world’s first rocking piano.

Sarah Davenport created it from a 1900s piano once owned by the Hong Kong ambassador. It rocks back and forwards as you play it.

I should point out that there is some camera trickery at the start of the piece which involves my cameraman, who’s a gifted pianist, wearing my jumper.

Fashionistas may like to know the pink jumper is from Gant and I bought it at the Richmond branch during the January sales.

David Beckham’s head on a melon

So here’s the final video of this week’s special advent calendar of And Finally reports.

It’s my all time favourite And Finally and comes from a few years back, when an artist was carving England footballer’s faces onto melons to support our boys in the World Cup.

I didn’t have much to work with, it was basically a man and his melons.

I was very proud of the lines ‘the manager’s a Swede, now the players are melons’ and ‘put the bits in the smoothie maker and blend it like Beckham’.

A word of warning, I forgot my make-up bag that day, and I look a bit like a zombie panda in the pieces to camera.

Speedy the Tortoise and his artificial leg

This week being Christmas week I’m sharing my favourite ever TV reports with you.

Behind today’s Advent calendar window of fun is Speedy the Tortoise. Sadly he lost a leg and his owners made a new one out of Lego. When that fell to bits they were stumped. Fortunately a neighbour who is an inventor came up with a new high-tech leg.

The feature has the feel of a Victoria Wood style spoof documentary, but I promise you it is genuine.

Watch out for a great wig and a marvellous moment when we wait for Speedy to walk out of frame, so we can move on to the next bit.

Enjoy

The pub full of Rooneys

All this week I’m putting a different favourite TV report on my site each day. It’s a sort of advent calendar without the chocolate.

This year, being a World Cup year, I did a lot of quirky football reports for the BBC.

I had a drink in a pub where all the bar staff were called Wayne Rooney.

The only one not called Rooney was the manager, who despite being a woman had changed her name by deed poll to Fabio Capello.

I love the shot of all the Rooneys sat in a line all claiming to be Rooney in a scene reminiscent of Spartacus.

Three Aladdins and lots of hats

Here’s my regular BBC East Midlands Today pantomime round-up. It was broadcast yesterday and features me at three different versions of Aladdin in Buxton, Leicester and Nottingham.

There’s a running gag of me wearing different hats for every piece to camera. I also wear hats in all the noddy shots, including the head of a Chinese lion, which you might not recognise as a traditional noddy, but that was my intention.

It was minus five the day we filmed in Buxton. Many thanks to my brilliant director Viv Holmes. The top camera work was provided by Neil Evans in Buxton and Mark Heathcote in Leicester and Nottingham.

Buxton Opera House is a beautiful venue if you ever get the chance to go. The Little Theatre Leicester is a great example of a well run smaller venue, with a dedicated team of volunteers who made us very welcome.
And the Theatre Royal, Nottingham’s production of Aladdin is outstanding for the 3D genie, which the kids all loved the day we were filming. Stephen Mulherne from Britain’s Got More Talent was a top bloke too and showed me a great magic trick.

Enjoy the hats!

Hosting the Children in Need Stage

Tonight I compered the stage for the BBC Children in Need outside broadcast at East Midlands Airport. It was great fun for a brilliant cause. Well done to everyone who gave up their time and helped raise money for children who need our help.

Here’s some pictures of the night.

Here’s me with first world war flying ace Quentin Ryanair. aka Chief News Correspondent Quentin Rayner. It’s the most impressive Movember tash I’ve seen.

You may have seen the Chippendoubles on Britain’s Got Talent. They were terrific on the night. It’s probably the closest I’ll get to David Beckham and Johnny Depp.
You can find out more about them here

Dale Diva are a charming bunch of singers from Derbyshire. I was a bit scared of the group leader who I had to keep interrupting for very valid, but nonetheless probably annoying reasons to do with live TV. I think she forgave me. More stuff about the ladies here

The East Midlands Today team did a cracking panto. I’m not sure what Des Coleman, our weather man is doing with that genie’s lamp. At least I hope it’s a lamp.