BBC Radio Suffolk Breakfast Show presenter Mark Murphy says he’s ‘gobsmacked’ to be made an MBE in the New Year Honours. Here he explains how he is proud to remain a trusted voice to listeners throughout the pandemic
What, or who, inspired you to embark in a career in broadcast journalism?
I always wanted to work in radio and to host the breakfast show on my local station BBC Radio Suffolk is my dream job. I loved listening to radio when I was growing up and always wanted to do it. There were no media studies courses in those days and so my wise old mum told me to go and get a proper job first and then I’d have some qualifications to fall back on.
What campaigns, and awards, are you particularly proud of?
I’ve been involved in many campaigns over the years but the most significant one was helping to raise £3million to build the East Anglia’s Children’s Hospice, the Treehouse, in just 11 months. It seemed as if everybody in Suffolk joined in to fundraise. Don’t be a Tosser, our anti-litter campaign, was another massive success – and Suffolk Day, which is now firmly established in the calendar of the county.
What does Suffolk mean to you?
Everything. It’s always been my home and I hope it always will be. It’s beautiful but it’s the people that make it.
How was everything looking for you at the start of the pandemic and how have you managed to adapt to the challenges?
My working life hasn’t changed that much except it’s dominated by Covid. As well as delivering the news, we’ve worked hard to keep the spirits up. I’ve missed spending times with friends and family, but we’ve limited our contact to stay safe.
Have you felt an extra responsibility to provide a calming voice on the radio during these troubling times?
Yes. People have said to me it was reassuring to hear me on air every morning and they felt that, if I was still on the radio, it meant things weren’t too bad. I also pride myself on being a trusted voice to my listeners.
How does it feel to be honoured with an MBE? Are you genuinely shocked?
Gobsmacked! I never in a million years expected it but it is lovely to think that I’m hopefully on the right path in life. It’s just a shame my parents aren’t alive to see their little boy turned out OK in the end.
What are your hopes, as we go into 2022?
Like everyone it would be to see the back of this pandemic and let people start living a full life again.