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Notes from the Sofa

Features | By Raymond Briggs

Desert Island Lists

Recently, BBC Four celebrated Desert Island Discs’ 75th year with a programme introduced by Kirsty Young, the current presenter. It showed a Bafta-winning documentary made to celebrate its 40th anniversary, in 1982. It made me turn to a book I’ve had for years, called Desert Island Lists, by Roy Plomley, creator of the programme, and Derek Drescher, its producer, published in 1984. Plomley thought of the idea in 1941 and, even by the time this book came out, there had already been 1,700 guests and 14,000 records. The first guest, the book reveals, was Vic Oliver, comedian, actor and musician, on 20th January 1942. The last (number 1,702) was Peter Maxwell Davies, composer, on 25th June 1983. Then, on the bottom corner of the second to last page, I just nip in, on 4th June 1983 (number 1,699) – Raymond Briggs, artist, writer, cartoonist. Luxury: a billiards table with snooker...

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