Jim Bowen became a household name when he began presenting Bullseye in 1981.
The Sunday teatime show ran for 14 years and attracted 17.5 million viewers at its peak. Bullseye involved three pairs of contestants, with a ‘thrower’, who would throw the darts, and a ‘knower’, who would answer general knowledge questions. Jim, though, was also a brilliant stand-up comedian who was loved by so many. I was lucky enough to meet him many times, and as they say, “they don’t make them like that any more”. Jim will be missed by so many, but thank you from all of us for the many years of laughter.
Coronation Street star Catherine Tyldesley has said the door will remain open after she leaves the cobbles. The actress, who plays Eva Price on the ITV soap, will be making her exit after eight years at Corrie. She said: “It’s a huge change. It’s not a question of me not being happy, it’s just something that I wanted to do.” Catherine denies that she was let go in the recent cull...
Coronation Street bosses have confirmed the return an old face to the Street in the summer. Nigel Havers will be reprising his role as dastardly Lewis Archer – the conman who famously swindled Gail Platt in 2013, before fleeing to Belize. Nigel recently enjoyed huge success in the London Palladium pantomime Dick Whittington and tells me: “It’s down to the fans of course, they seem to love how bad Lewis was, but ‘watch out Audrey’ is what I say...”
Richard Blackwood (Vincent) is departing from EastEnders after three years in the soap, it has been confirmed. The actor has played Vincent Hubbard since February 2015, and will bid farewell to Albert Square soon.
Did you know that Wakefield singer Jane McDonald was also in the frame to host the revamped Blind Date on Channel 5, but bosses decided to go ahead with Paul O’Grady? Now they are wondering if it would have been a bigger hit with Jane at the helm.
BBC broadcaster Zoe Ball is heading to rival ITV for a new weekend talk show. The It Takes Two presenter, 47, will present Zoe Ball on Saturday, and Zoe Ball on Sunday, both shortened to ZBoS, for an hour every weekend morning. The studio-based series will feature live music, celebrity guests, and topical discussion.
Countryfile is now the most popular show watched on a Sunday evening on the BBC. Insiders tell me that the reason for the show’s popularity is simple: “We all like the idea of a stint in the country, and this way we can all dip in and out from time to time, but with no muddy boots.”
EastEnders bosses have not renewed the contract of Jenna Russell just 14 months after Michelle Fowler’s shock return. Jenna reveals: “I was given options but I decided that I would like to do something else, and because of that we agreed the time was right to depart the show. I shall miss many of them for sure.”
Britain’s Got Talent judge Amanda Holden claims she would still love to record a country and western album. “It’s one of my goals, I don’t know who would buy it of course, but for me it’s always been the kind of music I have loved,” she said.
Debbie McGee has revealed that she won’t keep dancing. She said: “The hard thing when you’ve done Strictly is that the professional you’ve been partnered with is the best in the world. I don’t know who I would want to be partnered with now, but the show was wonderful for me.”
Bake Off star Prue Leith tells me that she is stunned at how many people want to appear on the show. Prue said: “I love it of course, but it’s a tough regime and so many people put their heart and soul into it, but that is what makes us all watch it.”
Alan Carr is piloting a new primetime ‘shiny-floor’ entertainment show for ITV. And it’s yet another format that involves members of the public singing. Singalong – The Show is described as ‘The ultimate karaoke night’ and is being developed by ITV Studios.
Eamonn Holmes has claimed that political correctness is making television more ‘boring’. The presenter said that television schedules are full of ‘vanilla presenters’ who just follow the autocue, for fear of offending anyone.
He said: “If you say anything now you’re attacked on social media with some terrible things, but you know we are all allowed our own opinions.”
Julian Clary is to host a Radio Two panel show in which media clips are bleeped out to hide key words.
Titled Censored, Julian told me: “I love the medium of radio and I hope people join in and like the show. It’s fun that’s all, and we all need that.”
Emmerdale fans out there who are still feeling the absence of Andy Sugden... good news! Kelvin Fletcher is returning to TV. Kelvin, who played Andy in the soap for 20 years, is set to appear as part of a brand-new Channel 5 documentary called Springtime On The Farm.