Timmy Mallett

Timmy Mallett
Timmy Mallett

Mallett in Market Harborough 2008.
Born Timmy Mallett
18 October 1955 (1955-10-18) (age 56)
Marple, Cheshire, England
Occupation Radio/Television presenter
Spouse Lynda[1] (since 1990)

Timmy Mallett (born on 18 October 1955, Marple, UK) is a TV presenter and broadcaster in the UK. He achieved cult status on BBC Radio Oxford and Manchester's Piccadilly Radio and later on TV-am. Mallett is most notable for his striking visual style, involving loud shirts, colourful glasses and the giant pink foam mallet, labelled Mallett's Mallet as well as his 'utterly brilliant!' and 'bleurgh!' catchphrases.


Early life

Mallett attended Rosehill Primary School (Marple), Earnseat Prep School (Arnside) and then Hyde Grammar School (now Hyde Clarendon College).


Early radio career

His media career started while he was a student at the University of Warwick where he worked on 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 , Centre Radio (now Leicester Sound) as the station's launch presenter, Radio Luxembourg 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. Among Timmy's team of helpers were Chris Evans known as 'Nobby Nolevel', Andy Bird who played the pirate radio character 'Radio Diggle', Karen Walsh was the original 'Aunty Boney kneecaps', Brian Cox made jingles, friends Sally Mais and Anna Laurie were the cleaners, and many others were regulars 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.

Television break

It was in television that he was to see his biggest success. In 1983 he helmed Summer Run on Saturday mornings for ITV's breakfast station, TV-am. But Mallett's big break happened the following year when he became a presenter of Wide Awake Club, a new Saturday morning children's programme on TV-am, with co-presenters Michaela Strachan, James Baker, Arabella Warner and later Tommy Boyd. Future actor Mike Myers also had a minor role with Neil Mularkey. 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 (the name Pinky Punky was chosen after Mallett asked viewers to write in with their ideas for a name) and soon became one of Mallett's established sidekicks along with Magic, his pet cockatiel. Wacaday ended in 1992 when TV-am lost its franchise to broadcast.[2] Since then, Mallett has run his own production company, Brilliant TV.[3]

A memorable moment occurred when Mallett met the then-Prime Minister in 1990, Margaret Thatcher - and bashed her with the mallet.[4]

In 1993, Mallett starred in The Children's Channel's Around the World in 80 seconds as Captain Everything.[5]

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. Mallett's job was to save the world.[6]

Recent work

In 2002, 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".[7]

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.[8] In 2008 he entered the show as a full contestant.

Mallett was a trialist on The Match in 2006.[9] Mallett is also a supporter of Oxford United and regularly attends matches there. Mallett does a regular podcast for the Oxford Mail on United.[10] 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.[11]

As well as his broadcasting work, Mallett tours many students' unions, and clubs, performing his own show. In January 2008, Mallett appeared at University of Warwick Students' Union where he performed before a record audience of several thousand.[12]

In 2008, Mallett appeared on Big Brother's Little Brother .[13]

In September 2008 Mallett appeared on the BBC1 politics show This Week talking about being positive when things get tough.[14]

In November 2008 Mallett appeared in the eighth series of I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!. He entered the show in a unique way: by being captured in an over-sized net and imprisoned in jungle jail. The celebrities were given an option to trade their possessions for him and David Van Day to enter. They refused. On 30 November 2008, Mallett was the fourth contestant and only celebrity to be eliminated in battle rather than public vote from I'm a Celebrity after losing a (play-off) Bushtucker eating trial to Brian Paddick. Mallett was at a disadvantage in the "Last Chance Saloon" when it was revealed to be an eating and drinking live creatures trial—he is a vegetarian.[15]

He also regularly performs in panto, including Sleeping Beauty at the Grand Pavilion, Porthcawl, in December 2007.[16] Mallett played the part of Mr Smee in Peter Pan at the Playhouse, Weston Super Mare 2008-9.[17]


Mallett formed the band Bombalurina, along with female vocalists / dancers Dawn Andrews and Annie Dunkley, and released the single "Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini". The song entered the UK charts at number 23, rose to 13 the next week, then to 3 and finally to number 1 on 19 August 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.

For "Tommy's campaign" Timmy recorded "The Laughing Policeman" with Beatles producer George Martin.

Under the name of "Del Costa" Timmy released "Hot Hot Hot" in 1992. The video was shot in Ibiza. It's now a collector's item.

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 Mallett featured in Skepta's video "Rolex Sweep"[18] and accompanied Skepta to the MOBO nominations.[19]

During I'm a Celebrity, Mallett and David Van Day wrote and performed the song "Biff Baff Boff We're Celebrities".[20] The song has been subsequently put to music by Steps producer Barry Upton and was released on Jungle Celebrity Records in December 2008 as a download on iTunes.[21]

Charity work

Mallett was involved in the rescue of a woman from the waters of the marina in Hartlepool after she had fallen in.[22]

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.[23]

Mallett supported the campaign to re-route the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route (AWPR) in Aberdeen and protect the Camphill movement community at Newton Dee.[24]

Mallett hosts It's a Knockout days for the charity Children Today, based in Chester, of which he is a patron.

In April 2009 Mallett opened the Springside home in Stockport for people with autism and Asperger syndrome.


Mallett paints in acrylics and oils and exhibits regularly.[25] 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.[26] He has said that he shares tips for his art work with his friend Rolf Harris.[27]


2008 Peter Pan, Weston Super Mare

2007 Sleeping Beauty, Porthcawl

2002 Dick Whittington, Worthing

2001 Cinderella, Billingham

2000 Aladdin, Lewisham

1999 Snow White, Billingham

1996 Cinderella, St Albans

1995 Aladdin, Swindon

1994 Dick Whittington, Northampton

1993 Cinderella, Southend

1992 Jack and the Beanstalk, Reading

1991 Cinderella, Lewisham

Selected Television programmes


  1. ^ By COLIN ROBERTSONin Australia (2008-11-25). "Timmy Mallett's wife Lynda talks to The Sun | The Sun |Showbiz|TV|Im A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here". London: The Sun. http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/showbiz/tv/im_a__celebrity/article1966504.ece. Retrieved 2010-06-18. 
  2. ^ "Wacaday" (1985) Wacaday.co.uk
  3. ^ Brilliant TV BrilliantTV.co.uk
  4. ^ Timmy Mallett: Still wide awake![dead link] Bexley News Shopper
  5. ^ Timmy Mallett - television, Around The World In 80 Seconds BrilliantTV.co.uk
  6. ^ Timmy Mallet - television, Timmy Towers BrilliantTV.co.uk
  7. ^ "BBC News: West Ham 'hammer' knocked on the head, 2002". 23 November 2002. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/2505351.stm. Retrieved 6 January 2010. 
  8. ^ He's a celebrity[dead link] BrilliantTV.co.uk
  9. ^ "Timmy Mallett on The Match". http://www.brillianttv.co.uk/timmymallett/match.html. 
  10. ^ Timmy Mallett - sport - Oxford United BrilliantTV.co.uk
  11. ^ "The Beeps" (2007) IMDB.com
  12. ^ Warwick University BrilliantTV.co.uk
  13. ^ Timmy Mallett - television, Big Brother's Little Brother BrilliantTV.co.uk
  14. ^ "BBC This week: Timmy's Upside to the downturn, 2008". BBC News. 19 September 2008. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/programmes/this_week/7624980.stm. Retrieved 6 January 2010. 
  15. ^ Timmy Mallett leaves jungle TheSun.co.uk
  16. ^ Theatre BrilliantTV.co.uk
  17. ^ Utterly Brilliant Children's Presenter Timmy Mallet Announced For Weston Panto ThePlayhouse.co.uk
  18. ^ Timmy Mallet gets in on the Rolex Sweep BBC.co.uk
  19. ^ UK NEWS: MORE MOBO 2008 NOMINATIONS LAUNCH PICS MadNews.Wordpress.com
  20. ^ Biff Baff Boff by Croc Idol YouTube.com
  21. ^ Timmy Mallett Blog December 2008 TimmyMallett.co.uk
  22. ^ "BBC News: Timmy Mallett to the Rescue, 2001". 31 December 2001. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/1735261.stm. Retrieved 6 January 2010. 
  23. ^ Timmy Mallett - charity BrilliantTV.co.uk
  24. ^ Save Camphill Supporters SaveCamphill.co.uk
  25. ^ Timmy Mallett - paintings BrilliantTV.co.uk
  26. ^ The Cookham Jubilee Collection BrilliantTV.co.uk
  27. ^ "Timmy swaps mallet and pallet". BBC News Online. 4 July 2008. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/oxfordshire/7490769.stm. Retrieved 29 March 2011. 

External links

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