The 10 presenting hopefuls who will compete to join the Blue Peter team as their brand new presenter have been revealed today.
The lucky 10, who were chosen from more than 20,000 people who registered their interest in joining the Blue Peter team, will take part in Blue Peter – You Decide!, a brand new show which will see CBBC viewers choose who will become the 36th presenter of the world’s longest-running children’s TV programme.
Double BAFTA-winning presenting team Dick and Dom (Richard McCourt and Dominic Wood) will bring their much-loved mix of humour and energy to the screen as they guide the 10 aspiring presenters through a series of challenge-based heats, designed to test some of the key skills a budding Blue Peter presenter will need to succeed.
Judges Myleene Klass, Eamonn Holmes and Ceallach Spellman will be scrutinising the hopefuls to decide which of them will make it through each elimination stage. But they can’t influence the ultimate winner – that’s in the hands of the CBBC viewers, who will be able to vote online from 22 July to choose which of the final three will get the job of their dreams.
Blue Peter – You Decide! starts on CBBC later this month. It is developed and produced by the Salford based CBBC Productions in-house team.
MEET THE FINAL TEN
University student Ben has spent the past three years studying on a full scholarship at the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus. Originally from Woodford Green, his degree in Psychology & Cognitive Neuroscience has allowed him to explore the world – trekking through jungles, climbing mountains and eating insects – before relaying these experiences back to everyone on campus via his own online blog and student magazine. His passions are performing arts, travelling and food; and he wants to share his appetite for adventure with our Blue Peter viewers.
Ben says: “I’m unlike anyone who has been on Blue Peter before and I’m up for anything. I’m always laughing and constantly looking for opportunities to try something new.
“It would be insane if I got this role. This is the first time I’ve done anything related to the TV industry and to get this far is unbelievable. To win would be madness – and awesome!”
Despite having wanted to be a presenter all his life, Freddie has never before been in front of the camera… until now! Raised on his family’s farm, he has a love of animals and the great outdoors. Although currently working as a recycling manager, Freddie’s love of broadcasting began at University where he presented two radio shows – getting people ready for Friday night and then helping them out of bed on a Sunday! Former rowing coach Freddie has a ‘never say never’ attitude and has completed half marathons all over the UK – training that he hopes will help him achieve his goal to be the next Blue Peter presenter.
Freddie says: “I’m energetic, enthusiastic and committed. I don’t shy away from anything, and I smile a lot – I’ll genuinely do anything that’s asked of me without hesitation and with a smile on my face.
“Matt Baker really inspired me when I was growing up. He seemed such an approachable guy who could get on with anyone and is a real natural on camera. He inspired kids and I’d love to do the same. If I was chosen it would be the best thing that has ever happened to me.”
Science-mad Ross loves nothings more than inspiring children and teaching them new things about the world around them. Ross has his own YouTube channel where he creates educational videos teaching the online world all about his love of science. Born in Newport, South Wales and now based in Bristol, Ross has travelled the country as part of a sports science interactive exhibition. It’s not just in the lab that Ross is bold and daring though; he’s also a black belt in Taekwondo, loves travel and will try anything once – including any challenges Blue Peter are willing to throw at him!
Ross says: “I’m enthusiastic and think I have the ability to inspire viewers to explore the world and do whatever they want to do in life. That’s what Blue Peter is all about – it’s about making kids excited about new things and showing them its okay to ask questions and go on adventures.
“I can’t think of the words to describe how amazing it would be if I was the new Blue Peter presenter. I get excited a lot, but that doesn’t even begin to explain what it would mean to me. It would change my life.”
Salford university student Isaac has a passion for presenting and is currently studying for a degree in TV and Radio. Cool and confident, Isaac has spent the last year working with club promoters interviewing guest DJs and presenting online promotional videos, but his real passion is children’s TV. Growing up as part of a big family, he loves spending time with his younger sisters and cousins and wants to inspire children all over the country as the next Blue Peter presenter. As well as broadcasting, Isaac loves cooking and football – especially his beloved Tottenham Hotspur!
Isaac says: “I’ve watched the show for years and love it. I think I could be a breath of fresh air and bring something new to the programme. Every presenter has their own style and I think mine is creative and current. I’m only 19 so in many ways I’m an average teenager, but I think my creative flair sets me apart.
“If the CBBC viewers chose me as their new Blue Peter presenter it would mean absolutely everything. It would be the ultimate dream come true. All I want to do is be a Blue Peter presenter. It’s such an iconic TV show – I couldn’t believe it when this opportunity came up for grabs. It’s unbelievable.”
Loughborough-born Andy describes the chance to become the next Blue Peter presenter as ‘a dream come true’. When he moved to London to pursue his presenting dream he began making videos and documenting behind the scenes on productions before landing a job on online channel SBTV, presenting their sports content – something he’s really passionate about as a former track athlete himself. In the past year as a web presenter, Andy has travelled up and down the country interviewing stars of screen, pitch and track; something he hopes will help him in pursing his dream to work on Blue Peter.
Andy says: “I am who I am. There’s no-one like me. I love travelling and adventures. I think my friends would say that if there’s something I want I really go for it and try to achieve it.
“If the CBBC audience chose me as the brand new Blue Peter presenter it would mean everything to me. Becoming a TV presenter isn’t an easy thing to do and to be chosen to present one of the UK’s – if not the world’s – most respected TV shows would be so amazing. Unbelievable. I’d celebrate by making a Tracy Island!”
As a primary school teacher, Emma is used to working with children every day and loves entertaining staff and pupils every week in assembly. Full of energy and up for any challenge, Middlesbrough-born Emma loves music and getting creative. She runs two school choirs and knows a thing or two about makes because of all the activities she does in class. Outside of school, Emma has slept in the African rainforest and climbed mountains in China – but it would fulfil a lifelong dream to become the next Blue Peter presenter.
Emma says: “I don’t put on an act, I’m just me and I think that’s important. Blue Peter presenters should be likeable and someone kids can relate to. I’m full of energy, positive and willing to give anything a go – a big personality in a small package. Though they do say good things come in small packages!
“If I was chosen I’d be achieving a goal that I never thought was possible and doing something I’d never, ever thought I’d have the chance to do. It would be a dream come true.”
Dancing queen Kerry has an ambition to beat John Noakes’ record as the longest serving Blue Peter presenter! Londoner Kerry attended the Brit School before graduating from the London Studios Centre in 2010 having trained for three years in dance and performance – from jazz and musical theatre to singing and hip hop. Outgoing, spontaneous and passionate about inspiring today’s youth, Kerry describes herself as a big kid at heart and capable of doing absolutely anything if she puts her mind to it!
Kerry says: “Blue Peter presenters have a lot of energy, passion, and have a real connection with the audience, but are still able to show who they are so people can relate to them. I feel like everything in my life has driven me to be where I am now. It’s made me feel comfortable with myself and I really want to inspire others to do the same.
“It would mean the absolute world to me if I was chosen – a dream come true. Blue Peter is the longest running children’s TV show and it would be such an honour. It would be the biggest achievement of my life.”
HEPHZIBAH ‘HETTIE’ COLQUHOUN
Somerset-born Hettie doesn’t need much of an excuse to bring out her inner daredevil. As a charity fundraiser she’s raised an astonishing £250,000 for good causes, has completed the Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award and tried new and exciting experiences all over the world – from crunching on deep fried creepy crawlies in Bangkok to sharing mud baths with elephants in Thailand. Hettie’s motto when facing challenges is ‘All for One and One for All!’, and she’s prepared to push herself to the limit to become the next Blue Peter Presenter.
Hettie says: “I think I could bring a different element to the show and shake it up a little. I’m interested in different cultures and am fresh and different. I don’t have any presenting experience at all but am willing to work hard and learn – a diamond in the rough hopefully!
“It has been surreal so far. I’ve been chilled most of the time, then it suddenly hits me and I just squeal and jump around. It’s an impossibility that I’ve reached this point and I’m lost for words. If I was chosen I think I’d need to sit down for a good long while! I’d be grinning for months and wouldn’t be able to wipe the smile off my face.”
French-speaking Lindsey is currently coming to the end of a four year degree at the University of Bristol. Outgoing and creative, Lindsey has taught Film, Drama and English to French children, presented theatre workshops for The National Youth Theatre and performed in an award-winning comedy show at The Edinburgh Fringe Festival. She describes herself as musical and athletic, a keen skier and lacrosse player as well as performing piano and saxophone; and would love nothing more than putting all these skills into practise as the next Blue Peter presenter!
Lindsey says: “I think I’m bubbly, fun to be around. I am full of energy and think I’d make a good Blue Peter presenter as I know how to translate this energy to the viewers. I think that’s what makes me different – apart from my bright red hair and the fact that I’m really short. I have loads of enthusiasm and I’m always smiling. I’m quite clumsy too!
“If the CBBC viewers chose me as the new presenter of Blue Peter it would be life changing – a real dream come true. It would also mean I didn’t have to grow up and go into the boring adult world after uni – I could keep having fun!”
Since watching Blue Peter as a child, Shona has dreamt of presenting the show. Born in Edinburgh but now working in London behind the scenes on ITV’s Daybreak, Shona dreams of stepping out from behind the camera to pursue a career in front of the lens. With an infectious personality and a thirst for adventure, Shona says she “won’t fail at any challenge” to prove that she’s the right girl for the job!
Shona says: “I’m always up for a challenge and love learning new things. I think I have an infectious personality and will hopefully get people excited about what I’m doing. I think I’m a girlie girl with an edge – a real go-getter.
“It would mean the absolute world to me to get this job. I remember watching Anthea Turner, building a Tracy Island and sending in pictures to the show countless times but I still don’t have a Blue Peter badge. I’m desperate to get one! I can’t think of any programme I’d rather present. It’s the opportunity of a lifetime.”