Gerry Anderson inducted into hall of fame

The late Gerry Anderson.
The late Gerry Anderson.

The much loved and respected BBC Radio Ulster presenter Gerry Anderson will be posthumously inducted into the PPI (Phonographic Perfomance Ireland) Radio Awards Hall of Fame this Friday 18th September.

The PPI Radio Awards Hall of Fame ceremony which is due to take place at the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland offices in Dublin will see recipients chosen by a group of their peers in the Irish radio industry. The inductees range from national to local radio broadcasters, all of whom are highly respected for their skill, passion for their jobs and their love for radio.

The inimitable Gerry Michael Anderson started his broadcasting career at BBC Northern Ireland 30 years ago, presenting his first programme on BBC Radio Foyle in 1985.

Before long his popular mid-morning programme was broadcast on BBC Radio Ulster and BBC Radio Foyle every weekday morning from 10.30am-12pm. In the programme Gerry, joined by his ‘side-kick’ Sean Coyle, would share his passion for music while imparting his musings on life and embarking on weird and wonderful conversations with his listeners.

The Derry broadcaster, famous for coining the phrase ‘Stroke City’, has won Radio Academy Awards and Royal Television Society Awards and, in 2005, became the first Northern Ireland broadcaster to be inducted into the Radio Academy Hall of Fame.

Gerry’s family who will be accepting the award posthumously on his behalf said: “Radio was the true love of Gerry’s life so it’s wonderfully fitting that he has been recognised in this way. We’re immensely proud of his work on air and it says so much about his legacy that he is now being inducted into the PPI Hall of Fame. Gerry always loved coming back down to Dublin, he had a strong connection to the place and so many friends that he would have had a ball attending the induction ceremony. We’re honoured to attend on his behalf.”

Peter Johnston, Director, BBC Northern Ireland, said: “Gerry was a man of great wit and mischief but also brought real wisdom and insight to everything he did. All of us in BBC Northern Ireland miss Gerry very much, but of course he is most missed by his family and his adoring and loyal fans. This recognition from the PPI is a fitting tribute to a true legend of our industry - something which is often said lightly but is genuinely true of Gerry.”

Fergus Keeling, Head of Radio, BBC Northern Ireland, said: “Gerry was possibly the cleverest man I’ve ever known. He was naturally funny and had an incomparable style of broadcasting. His charm, his wicked wit and his searing insights on life endeared him to us and of course his thousands of listeners. This award pays homage to the man who will be remembered fondly for making us laugh every day at ourselves and this funny world we live in.”

In 2006, Gerry became a clay model for the animated television series On The Air, which featured real, unedited clips from his BBC Radio Ulster/Foyle programme. On The Air, which returned for a further two series, highlighted the bizarre and often hilarious conversations Gerry had on air with Sean, his listeners and occasionally himself as he, Sean and many of the colourful characters who called into his programme where turned into Claymation models.

Since its establishment in 2012, the PPI Radio Awards Hall of Fame has been recognised as one of the most respected honours to receive in the world of Irish radio. Also inducted this year will be Pat Balfe (Communicorp Group), Des Cahill (RTÉ Radio 1) and the late Henry Owens (Independent Broadcasters of Ireland).