BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Tuesday, 12 February 2008, 16:09 GMT
Broadcaster Peel's lyric epitaph
John Peel
John Peel could not hear the song without bursting into tears
John Peel's gravestone has been erected three years after his death, bearing a lyric from his favourite song.

Peel was Radio 1's longest serving DJ when he died aged 65 in October 2004, famously championing The Undertones' Teenage Kicks on his show.

He often said he would like the song's line "Teenage dreams, so hard to beat" on his tombstone. Lead singer Feargal Sharkey called it "flattering".

The DJ is buried in Great Finborough, Suffolk, where he lived for 33 years.

Peel's widow, Sheila Ravenscroft, said: "We have put the words on the stone that he would've wanted. I wouldn't dare do anything else!"

Explaining the reason for the three-year delay in erecting the stone, she said: "I suppose that it was my fault really. I couldn't face it to start with.

Liverpool FC

"For the first year we couldn't do anything because the ground has to settle. Then it took a long time to find a traditional type of York stone I knew John would like. A stonemason friend did the work."

Peel's second love was Liverpool FC and its emblem, the Liver Bird, adorns the top of his gravestone.

The father-of-four was the champion of new British music for nearly 40 years on his late-night Radio 1 show.

He discovered some of the most influential bands of the past four decades including Pulp, The Smiths and The Undertones - who were signed after he premiered a demo of Teenage Kicks on his show.

It doesn't get any better than this
John Peel

Peel once played the song twice in a row because "it doesn't get any better than this", and was quoted as saying he could not hear the punk anthem without bursting into tears.

Former Undertones singer Feargal Sharkey told the BBC he had known of Peel's intentions for 20 years.

"It is phenomenally overwhelming he gave such prominence to something The Undertones did," he said.

"It is extraordinarily flattering," added Sharkey, who said Peel had been an "iconic" figure in his life.

His Radio 1 show ran three nights a week and, in 1998, he became the presenter of Radio 4's Home Truths, which won four Sony Radio awards in 1999.

He was born John Robert Parker Ravenscroft in Heswall, Wirral, in 1939.

Peel received an OBE in 1998 and earned a place in the Radio Academy Hall of Fame.

Pub named after radio broadcaster
16 Feb 07 |  Merseyside
Peel honoured by 'spiritual city'
12 Oct 06 |  Merseyside
Obituary: John Peel
26 Oct 04 |  Entertainment
John Peel: Your tributes
26 Oct 04 |  Have Your Say


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific