Bobby MOORE OBE (1941-1993)

Bobby Moore This Is Your Life

programme details...

  • Edition No: 290
  • Subject No: 292
  • Broadcast live: Wed 6 Jan 1971
  • Broadcast time: 7.00-7.30pm
  • Venue: Euston Road Studios
  • Series: 11
  • Edition: 8

on the guest list...

  • Tina - wife
  • Bob - father
  • Doris - mother
  • Kenny Lynch
  • Tom Russell
  • Wally St Pier - in audience
  • Jack Turner - in audience
  • Lady Hoare
  • Jimmy Greaves
  • George Cohen
  • Ray Wilson
  • Nobby Stiles
  • Roger Hunt
  • Bobby Charlton
  • Martin Peters
  • Geoff Hurst
  • Alfonso Senior
  • Filmed tributes:
  • Roberta - daughter
  • Dean - son
  • Colin Milburn
  • Alf Ramsey

production team...

  • names above in bold indicate subjects of This Is Your Life
related pages...

Match of the Day

tackling football's top names

Bobby Charlton

Colin Milburn

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Screenshots of Bobby Moore This Is Your Life

Bobby Moore's biography

Matt Dickinson recalls this edition of This Is Your Life in his book, Bobby Moore, The Man in Full...

Moore spoke very little about his parents – and they preferred it that way – but we can catch the essence of them, and him, on This Is Your Life, the painfully stiff television programme that, in 1971, celebrated his glories as a footballer.

With a fond grin, genial 'Big' Bob starts to tell how Doss would painstakingly wash and iron young Robert's laces on the night before every schoolboy football match. Clutching her handbag, Doss tries to scold her husband for betraying her secret. 'Don't you dare,' she mutters. But inside she will have been glowing with pride at the memories of her precious Robert being so smart with his clean, pressed laces, his pristine kit and his hair neatly combed. Never did a young boy emerge more freshly scrubbed and polished from the East End of London.

Moore always recalled that his worst day at school was the time he was ordered to go up in front of his classmates and sing 'God Save The Queen'. He was mortified, and the words came out in a half-hearted drone. Talking about it years later, he could still feel the hot flush of embarrassment.

Moore looks similarly pained on This Is Your Life when asked to recall his childhood nicknames. 'Tubby' they called him. Or 'Fatso'. 'Nicknames which can hurt a boy,' he admitted.

It was unfortunate timing, then, that Moore was due to be featured on This Is Your Life in the same week as the Blackpool scandal. Tina had been running around setting up all sorts of surprises for her husband just as trouble was brewing.

No wonder Moore looks particularly bashful when Eamonn Andrews suddenly surprises him with his big red book, emerging from the shadows after Moore had been set up to receive an award in his testimonial year.

Moore blushes when Andrews says: 'We could have chosen a better week. It's not the happiest in West Ham's history.'

'You can say that again, Eamonn,' Moore deadpans.

Moore's old friends and colleagues roll out to pay their respects and there is a short message played from Ramsey. But Greenwood is notable by his absence.

Bobby Moore's biography

Tina Moore recalls this edition of This Is Your Life in her book, Bobby Moore, By The Person Who Knew Him Best...

It was great to get away on that skiing jaunt, not just because I hated the stuff in the papers. I had a secret.

For some time, plans had been afoot for the BBC to make Bobby the subject of This Is Your Life. While the West Ham board were having crisis meetings about Blackpool, the BBC were having crisis meetings about Bobby. The fact that he was being branded all over the media as a naughty boy, and that everyone was smacking him left, right and centre, posed them a dilemma. Should they go ahead and show the programme or postpone it until the fingers had stopped wagging? Bobby, of course, was completely oblivious to this extra thickening of the brew. The whole point of This Is Your Life was that the subject had to be unaware of what was going on until the moment Eamonn Andrews surprised them with his Big Red Book.

Weeks before the Blackpool furore hit the papers, researchers had come along to Chigwell while Bobby was away for secret discussions about who they should have on the show. They were very nice boys, my age. We'd had a bottle of wine, and then another bottle of wine, then brandies, then liqueurs. Leaving behind me a lounge full of overflowing ashtrays and glasses of different shapes and sizes, I staggered up to bed around four in the morning. The next thing I knew was the sound of a key in the front door. Bobby was home a day earlier than I'd expected.

In he walked, to be greeted by a Bacchanalian scene, complete with record still going round and round on the turntable. Upstairs was a half-sloshed wife whose hastily concocted story was a mass of holes and contradictions. He accused me of having an affair and it wasn't until Eamonn Andrews popped up with his Big Red Book weeks later that the penny dropped and my reputation was saved.

I still have a tape of Bobby's appearance on the show and it makes wonderful, if unintentionally hilarious, viewing. It was The Show Of The Stiffs. I adopted a would-be elegant pose from which I didn't move all night. It wasn't only my hair that was set - it was as though all of me was lacquered. I never once uncrossed my legs and, of course, having been stuck in the same position all the way through recording, I was crippled with cramp when finally we were allowed to get up. I also got the giggles, because Doss spoke her lines in such an extraordinary, fake posh accent: 'Ay always knew Robairt was keen on footbahll.'

But Bobby really put himself over well. That was great for him. Normally he found it hard to be natural on TV because he was quite shy and self-conscious and he would come over as a bit uptight.

Alfonso Senior, with whom he'd stayed while under house arrest in Bogota, had been flown over to appear on the show, as well as the two Jimmies, Greaves and Tarbuck. There was also a lady from the Thalidomide Trust, for which Bobby had done a lot of work on the quiet. The BBC showed a film clip of him playing with a boy born without limbs and Bobby was - well, just Bobby with him, natural and nice. He saw the boy, not the disability, and opened up to him whereas normally he was guarded. There was a brilliant exchange of dialogue between the two of them. 'Who do you support?' Bobby asked the boy.

'West Ham,' said the boy, adding with a cheeky smile, 'Who do you support?'

Bobby gave him a friendly cuff around the ear. 'Who do you think I support? Tina, Roberta and Dean, of course.'

Blackpool was forgotten. He was the nation's hero again.

[ editor: the programme was produced by Thames Television, not the BBC]

Bobby Moore's biography

Jeff Powell recalls this edition of This Is Your Life in his book, Bobby Moore, The Definitive Biography...

While Greenwood plunged into a round of meetings with the club's directors, BBC television were making their usual secretive arrangements for that Wednesday night's This Is Your Life programme, with Moore as the surprised subject.

West Ham delayed announcing their verdict on Moore and company until Thursday therefore allowing the BBC to go ahead with their programme unembarrassed.

Moore: 'One night I'm a TV star. Next day, the big hammer.'

[ editor: the programme was produced by Thames Television, not the BBC]

Series 11 subjects

Bob Hope | Vidal Sassoon | Talbot Rothwell | Mike and Bernie Winters | Joe Brown | Patrick Campbell | Bobby Moore
Robert Soutter | Graham Hill | Sandy Powell | Edward Woodward | Moira Lister | Dickie Henderson | Wilfred Pickles
Kenny Ball | Marjorie Proops | Basil D'Oliveira | Clive Dunn | Peter Noone | Monica Dickens | Jon Pertwee
Lionel Jeffries | Adam Faith | Googie Withers | Matt Busby