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Wednesday, 2 June, 1999, 15:16 GMT 16:16 UK
Young DJ's university challenge
catatonia
Stephens will concentrate on Welsh acts like Catatonia
BBC Radio 1 has signed up its youngest-ever DJ - but his parents would rather he went to university than take a career behind the microphone.

Huw Stephens, 18, from Cardiff, will present a weekly music show for Wales on Thursday evenings.

He is among six presenters of new weekly shows broadcast to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland as part of the BBC's response to devolution.

But his parents said they still wanted him to go to university not to get too involved in the "fickle" pop business.

Father Meic, a university lecturer, said: "He's done fantastically well and we are very proud of him.

"But he is a bright boy and we want him to go to university.

"We realise how incredible it is for him to gte a job with Radio 1, but he needs to think about his education as well."

'He won't be another Noel Edmonds'

noel edmonds
Noel Edmonds: Started as Radio 1's youngest DJ in 1969
But Meic said he was sure Huw knew what he was doing, adding: "He won't be another Noel Edmonds or Chris Evans."

Edmonds was the station's previous youngest DJ - he was hired aged 20 in 1969.

Huw - who is about to sit his A-levels, said: "I know my parents want me to go to university, but this is too good a chance to miss.

"I can take a year or two out now before going on later. It's incredible to think that in a few weeks time I'll be broadcasting on national radio."

He started on hospital radio, where he created a stir by refusing to play Phil Collins. He also contributed to pop magazines and to shows on BBC Radio Cymru.

The new shows will focus on up-and-coming music from in each of the countries in which they are broadcast, replacing Steve Lamacq's Evening Session at 2000 on Thursdays.

Success of Welsh bands

Steve Lamacq: The devolved shows replace his slot on a Thursday
Steve Lamacq: Devolved shows replace his slot on Thursday
But Radio 1 has no plans for similar regional shows in England, despite the presence of long-established local scenes in places such as Manchester - home of Oasis and the Stone Roses - and Bristol.

A spokeswoman said: "Listeners in England will still hear the Evening Session on Thursdays, and Steve Lamacq will be focusing on music from a different part of England each week.

"On the following Monday's Lamacq Live show listeners across the UK can hear the best of the music played on the different national shows - so they will still feel very much part of the Evening Session."

Welsh bands in particular have done well of late, led by the Manic Street Preachers, Catatonia and Super Furry Animals.

Playlists for the Scottish show are likely to be led by the likes of Belle and Sebastian, the Delgados and Arab Strap, while prominent Northern Ireland acts include Ash, the Divine Comedy, and club DJ David Holmes.

Stephens will co-host his show with Bethan Elfyn, 25, from 22 July.

Broadcasts to Scotland, presented by Gill Mills and Vic Galloway, both 27, begin from 8 July.

In Northern Ireland the team will be Colin Murray, 22, and Donna Legge, 26, who start their shows from 5 August.

See also:

15 Feb 99 | Entertainment
Theakston steps into l'Anson's shoes
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