John Peel OBE

John Peel was born in Heswall near Chester in 1939 and after completing his military service in Britain in 1962, went to Texas and began working for WRR radio in Dallas. For the next three years he worked at various radio stations in America, among them KOMA in Oklahoma City and KMEN outside Los Angeles. He returned to Britain in 1967 and joined Radio London with his celebrated show "The Perfumed Garden"

John was with Radio 1 from the beginning in 1967, establishing himself with the late night programme Top Gear. John was the first DJ to give air play to punk, reggae and hip-hop, long before they crossed over into the mainstream. Almost anyone who is anyone in the world of music has recorded a session for Peel. John added a new string to his bow when in 1998 he became the presenter of a new magazine programme called Home Truths on Radio 4. The programme reflected on the trials, tribulations and delights of family life. He and it became firm favourites with the audience.
John regularly topped music paper Best DJ polls. In 1998 John was awarded an OBE.

In 2002 he received the industry's highest accolade, when he was awarded the Sony Gold marking his outstanding contribution to radio over 35 years of broadcasting. John was awarded a host of Honorary Degrees - MA (University of East Anglia) Doctorates (Polytechnic University of East Anglia and Sheffield Hallam University), Hon. Degrees (Liverpool University, Open University, Portsmouth University, Bradford University) and a Fellowship (John Moores University Liverpool).

He most recently hosted his show on Radio 1 three nights a week and Home Truths on Radio 4.

He died on Tuesday 26th October 2004 of a Heart Attack whilst on holiday in Peru.

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