Timmy Mallett (born on 18 October, 1955, Marple, Cheshire, England) is a TV presenter and broadcaster who achieved cult status in the UK on Manchester's Piccadilly Radio and then later on TV-am. He lives in Cookham Rise, UK.
Mallett is most notable for his striking visual style, involving loud shirts, comedy glasses and the giant pink foam mallet, labelled Mallett's Mallet that he carried with him, sometimes bonking children on the head, as well as his 'utterly brilliant!' and 'bleurgh!' catchphrases.
The son of a vicar
, he attended Rose Hill Primary School (Marple), Earnseat prep school (Arnside) and then Hyde
Early radio career
His media career started while he was a student at the University of Warwick
, where he worked for the student radio
station, Radio Warwick
. After graduating with a degree in History, he started work straight after his graduation day at BBC Radio Oxford
. He later moved to Radio Luxembourg
, Centre Radio (now Leicester Sound
, and Manchester
's Piccadilly Radio
where his energetic style won him many fans and Sony Awards
. The programme he hosted at Piccadilly was Timmy on the Tranny
, a popular weekday evening show that ran from 8pm-11pm and took its name from Mallett's show on Radio Oxford. Chris Evans
as his radio persona Nobby Nolevel was a regular on the programme. This led to Mallett presenting the Manchester based BBC2
youth music show Oxford Road Show
for a year in 1984. In March 1985 he also stood in for David Jensen
on the Network Chart, at the time broadcast to most if not all British commercial radio stations.
It was in television that he was to see his biggest success. In 1984 he became a presenter of Wide Awake Club
, a new Saturday morning children's programme on ITV
's breakfast station, TV-am
, which also launched the career of Austin Powers
actor Mike Myers
. Mallett's personality came to dominate the show to such an extent that when TV-am found itself lacking a school holidays programme after Roland Rat
left to join the BBC
, he was offered the chance to present the replacement solo. The replacement, a spin-off of Wide Awake Club
, was called Wacaday
(based on the addition of 'aday' to the initials 'WAC' for Wide Awake Club
) and began broadcasting in 1985.
Wacaday was even more successful than its parent. The programme was characterised by games such as Mallett's Mallet, a word association game where contestants were hit over the head by his famed mallet for getting answers wrong. In later years, a talking mini version of the mallet called Pinky Punky was introduced and soon became one of Mallett's established sidekicks along with Magic, his pet cockatiel (the name Pinky Punky was chosen after Timmy asked viewers to write in with their ideas for a name). Wacaday ended in 1992 with TV-am. Since then, Mallett runs his own production company, Brilliant TV.
A memorable moment occurred when Mallett met the then-Prime Minister in 1990, Margaret Thatcher - and introduced her to the mallet.
In 1993, Timmy starred in The Children's Channel's Around the World in 80 seconds as Captain Everything.
From 1997, Brilliant TV made three series of Timmy Towers for CITV, starring Mark Speight as the Abominable No Man, Rodger Bremble as Aunty Boney knees, and Alex Lovell as the delightful Miss Thing. Timmy Towers was a panto-style show where The Abominable No Man wanted to take over the world, kidnap kids, lock them in the Room with No TV and flush them down the toilet. Timmy's job was to save the world - a tough job but very enjoyable to watch.
In 2002, Timmy Mallett forced West Ham United Football Club
to stop selling copies of their mascot, Herbie the Hammer, in their club shop after he complained that it looked too similar to Pinky Punky. West Ham United called the matter "trivial".
In 2004 he was a stand-in contestant for the ITV1 jungle-based reality series I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!. He did not become a contestant on the show, but recorded a video diary of his exploits in Australia, the setting for the series, for the ITV2 companion programme I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! Now.
Mallett was a trialist on The Match in 2006 . Mallett is also a supporter of Oxford United and regularly attends matches there. Timmy does a regular podcast for the Oxford Mail on United. He can also be seen occasionally watching his local club Maidenhead United
From 2007, Mallett can be heard as the voice of Smelly Beep in the pre-school sitcom The Beeps on Five.
On the 22 June, 2008, Mallett appeared on Big Brother's Little Brother and played the show's quiz Becca's Mind.
September 2008 Timmy appeared on the BBC1 politics show This Week talking about being positive when things get tough.
As well as his broadcasting work, Mallett tours many students' unions, and clubs, performing his own show. In January 2008, Mallett appeared at Warwick Student Union where he performed before a record audience of several thousand..
He also regularly performs in panto, including Sleeping Beauty at the Grand Pavilion, Porthcawl, in December 2007. Timmy will be playing the part of Mr Smee in Peter Pan at the Playhouse, Weston Super Mare December 2008.
Mallett formed the band Bombalurina
, along with female vocalists / dancers Dawn and Annie Dunkley, and released the single "Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini
". The song, produced by Andrew Lloyd Webber
, entered the UK charts
at number 23, rose to 13 the next week, then to 3 and finally to number 1 on August 19 1990
, where it stayed for three weeks. More than 1,000,000 copies of the single were sold around the World and it topped the charts in over a dozen countries. Follow ups included "7 Little Girls Sitting in the Back Seat" "The Bump", as well as an album, Huggin' an' a Kissin
In 1986 he also became a presenter on pan-European music channel Music Box, and for this reason he also took part in a sort of music group called The Rap Pack made up of some of Music Box's presenters, who released a single called Back To The Rhythm along with an accompanying video.
In 2008 Timmy featured in Skepta's video "Rolex Sweep" and accompanied Skepta to the MOBO nominations.
Mallett was hailed a hero at the end of 2001 when he rescued a woman who had fallen into freezing waters at a marina in Hartlepool
He is a patron of Prime Minister Gladstone's St Deiniol's Library in Hawarden, North Wales which is the only prime ministerial library in the country.
Timmy supported the campaign to re-route the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route (AWPR) in Aberdeen and protect the Camphill movement community at Newton Dee.
Timmy hosts It's a knockout days for the charity Children Today and is a patron of the charity.
Timmy Mallett is an accomplished artist
and exhibits regularly. His paintings and limited edition prints sell in galleries across the country.
In 2002, for the Golden Jubilee of Elizabeth II, he completed a series of 50 portraits of people from around Cookham in Berkshire where he lives, including Lorraine Kelly, Sir Clive Woodward, Ulrika Jonsson, Jim Rosenthal, Wendy Craig and Stanley Spencer's grandson John.
In autumn 2008 Timmy will be doing a nation wide tour exhibiting his work at prestigious galleries across the UK. An exhibition of his work takes place in the Artists Gallery in Aberdeen, Scotland October 11th - 25th. He shares tips for his art work with his good friend Rolf Harris.
Selected Television programmes