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Last Updated: Wednesday, 7 November 2001, 11:32 GMT
Paul Kenyon
Paul Kenyon
Paul Kenyon

Not all dreams come true - but Paul Kenyon's did. At 18-years-old, he wanted to be a reporter for Panorama - and today he is a well known face on the BBC's flagship current affairs programme.

At the Royal Grammar School in High Wycombe and then Bury Grammar School, he was captain of the athletics team, vice-captain of the rugby team, CND member and big-time Clash and Buzzcocks fan.

He studied politics and economics in Nottingham and developed an interest in Russian and East European literature.

He graduated in '87 and worked as research assistant to Simon Hughes, the MP for Southwark and Bermondsey. After a year he moved on to his first journalism job, for a radio station in Humberside.

A year later he was back in Manchester working as a reporter for Piccadilly Radio. Within the year Paul was off to Preston where he became deputy editor of Red Rose Radio, at the age of 23.

BBC career

A year later he clinched his first BBC job, at GLR, the local radio station for London.

"The best thing about GLR was seeing the big-name bands coming in. Us reporters used to press our noses against the studio window for a glimpse of people like Johnny Rotten, Paul Weller and Siouxsie Sioux. Then we'd slink grudgingly back to the news desk to get on with our real jobs."

After the chaotic excitement of GLR, Paul went to the other extreme. As political reporter for the BBC at Millbank it was now debates long into the night, and snooze-length briefings on private members bills.

I did some of the most foolhardy doorsteps imaginable
Paul Kenyon
He then became political reporter for BBC South and made a documentary about an English couple who had tried to smuggle a Romanian gypsy child into Britain.

First mini-series

The trip precipitated two important events. One was meeting the girl he later married and the other was being offered his own mini-series.

"I developed a total determination to get to the truth, even if it meant sitting outside a suspects house for days, with no food and nowhere to go to the loo. I was unshakeable. I did some of the most foolhardy doorsteps imaginable; confronting three violent thugs without any back-up.

"They chased us in a pick-up and tried to barge us off the road. That would never be allowed to happen now".

After that Kenyon moved to the BBC newsroom in London. While reporting for BBC's One, Six and Nine O'clock News he was given a new series of documentaries called "Raising the Roof". It was packed with secret filming and doorsteps.

He then became a reporter on Panorama, something he had dreamed of since the age of eighteen.

Kenyon Confronts

In 2000 he was given his own BBC One series, "Kenyon Confronts". The first series hit the headlines when Kenyon stopped a wedding ceremony halfway through to expose it as bogus.

After getting hit in the face during a doorstep in 1999, Paul Kenyon now always takes a minder with him, a minder with a lot of experience ... he used to do the same job for Roger Cook.


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