John Stratford

Self confessed geek who likes current affairs debates down the pub

Where are you from?  I spent the first few days of my life at the maternity unit of Northampton General Hospital, but Milton Keynes is very much where I'm from and woe betide anyone who slags MK off!!

What were you doing before radio?  I studied science at University in London - in the same department Queen guitarist Brian May studied at - just not at the same time!  After that I did a journalism diploma, again in London.  I then started working in radio - in such wonderful locations as Slough, Loughborough, Coventry and Wrexham - and some slightly better ones like Guildford, Newbury, Oxford and Reading!

Best part of the job?  Being able to tell people what's happening in the world when they wake up in the morning.  I also always find myself very well prepared for discussions on current affairs down the pub!

Moment you'd most like to forget?   I was working at another radio station the day the Lib Dems were going to announce who was going to be their new leader.  The announcement was due to be made while I was on-air reading a bulletin, and I put the fader up live when I thought the announcement was imminent, only to get a spokesman say "please make sure your mobile phones are switched off.  Tea and biscuits will be available afterwards."  All live during a news bulletin.  Great.

Three words that describe you?  Determined, geeky, sleepy (it's what you get when you get up at 3.45am each day!)

What advice would you give to anyone hoping to get started in journalism? Be keen, enthusiastic and willing to work for free, so you can get your foot in the door.  And try not to take no for an answer.

Dream interview?  I'd love to interview The Queen, because she's never ever given an interview.  That would be some exclusive!

If I wasn't a news reporter I'd be?  Probably a teacher, dreaming of working in news instead!