Trevor BAYLIS OBE (1937-2018)

Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life

programme details...

  • Edition No: 982
  • Subject No: 957
  • Broadcast date: Mon 27 Oct 1997
  • Broadcast time: 7.00-7.30pm
  • Recorded: Wed 10 Sep 1997
  • Venue: unknown
  • Series: 38
  • Edition: 9
  • Code name: Clever

on the guest list...

  • Jeff Woolf
  • Pauline Bricker
  • Jill Hammerley
  • Derek Bass - cousin
  • John Sellers
  • Tony Wilcox
  • Mike Dodds
  • Tom, Lord Strafford
  • John Glazier
  • Tony Hutchins
  • Austin Mitchell
  • Reg Prillock
  • George Gould
  • Bernard Mules
  • Nick Wincott
  • Bob Flowerdew
  • Lorna Boulter
  • Monty - dog
  • Johnny Pugh
  • Filmed tributes:
  • Chris Tarrant
  • Sue Lawley
  • John Humphrys
  • Roy Hudd
  • Mick Delap
  • Christopher Staines
  • Rory Steer

production team...

  • Researcher: Clare Thompson
  • Writer: Joe Steeples
  • Directors: John Gorman, Steve Docherty
  • Associate Producer: Liz Rawlings
  • Executive Producer: John Longley
  • Series Producer: Jack Crawshaw
  • Producer: Sue Green
  • names above in bold indicate subjects of This Is Your Life
related pages...

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The Night of 1000 Lives

a celebration of a thousand editions

John Humphrys

Trevor Baylis recalls his experience of This Is Your Life

Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life

Screenshots of Trevor Baylis This Is Your Life

Mail on Sunday UPDATED: 2 September 2011

My haven: Wind-up radio inventor Trevor Baylis unwinds in his quirky living room

Mail on Sunday: Trevor Baylis article


The brainwave to build a wind-up radio came after I saw a documentary in 1991 about Aids in Africa - I thought if people had radios they could learn about the dangers and stay healthy. Making this prototype was quite easy, it was getting it to the market that was the hardest part. Then Tomorrow's World picked up on it after I'd been turned down by everyone else and it went into production and saved many lives. I'm proud of my radio, even if it's never made me much money.


Ever since was a nipper I've had dogs. My last three have been named Monty, Rommel and Ike, after the famous wartime generals. I realise Rommel was officially 'the enemy' but he had bottle. I got Ike, a Labrador, from Battersea Dog's Home - where I get all my dogs - about nine years ago, and love him to bits. He may have the brains of a starfish, but he's a wonderful companion, and walking him keeps me healthy - I need that at the age of 74.


I've been smoking a pipe since my 20s. I thought it made me look cool and it's given me a lot of pleasure over the years. It's a way of chilling out and I've come up with some of my best ideas while chewing on it. I see it as a sort of thinking machine. I'm pretty sanguine about the health risks - half the time I'm not even smoking it anyway. Just chewing on it. I was voted Pipe Smoker of the Year in 1999, which I think is a hell of an honour.


Being awarded the OBE in 1997 in recognition of the wind-up radio was the proudest day of my life. I hired a rolls-royce and a top hat and tails to go to Buckingham Palace to collect it from the Queen. I was determined to enjoy it. And then, to cap it all. Michael Aspel popped up outside the palace with his famous red book and invited me on to This Is Your Life. My only regret is my parents Bill and Gladys weren't there to see it - they'd have been chuffed to bits.


I'm not ashamed to admit I'm a bit of an egomaniac. I religiously collect newspaper and magazine cuttings about myself and paste them into my 'Ego Files'. They go back to my days as an underwater stuntman many years ago, but are mainly focused on my life as an inventor. I'm on 'Ego File No 9' now and I'm adding to it on a monthly basis. Going through them when the nights close in is a bit like taking a trip down Memory Lane.


I live on Eel Pie Island in the river Thames at Twickenham and a few years ago I met a sculptor here and was impressed by her work. I jokingly suggested one day she should do a bust of me, and to my surprise she jumped at the idea. I think she saw it as a challenge. The bronze now takes pride of place in my lounge. All I've done is stick a pith helmet on his head. I'm very pleased with him though, and he's a bit of company – even if his conversation is a bit limited.

Series 38 subjects

Jeremy Guscott | Magnus Magnusson | Maureen Rees | Russ Abbot | Sally Gunnell | Graham Cole | James Hatfield
Carol Vorderman | Trevor Baylis | Bryan Mosley | Murray Walker | Cheryl Baker | Errol Brown | Peter Snow
Nadim Sawalha | Clive Hornby | Trevor Bannister | Mary Ward | Brian Murphy | Robert Winston
Duncan Goodhew | Julia Watson | Anne Robinson | Bill Giles | Tim Healy | Raymond Baxter