Donovan Blake: I went to the same school as Oasis
PUBLISHED: 14:18 15 December 2018 | UPDATED: 07:56 17 December 2018
Lucy Taylor Photography
Donovan Blake is one of the family of faces on ITV Anglia’s main news programme ‘ITV News Anglia Tonight’. He’s the Sports Correspondent and has been working with the broadcaster for the last eighteen years. Originally from Manchester, Donovan started his journalism career at Jarrold’s News Agency in Ipswich. He also worked for Suffolk County Council as a Press Officer and was Sports Editor for the Ipswich radio station SGR FM prior to joining ITV. He talks to Gina Long
What is your connection to East Anglia?
My connection to East Anglia is principally through work, having moved to Suffolk in 1988 for my first job in journalism. Three jobs later… I’m still here.
What is your East Anglian Heaven ie what do you love most about East Anglia?
Mainly the relative peace and quiet compared to my home city, Manchester, the countryside, and the weather is much warmer and drier.
What is your East Anglian Hell ie what you hate most about living here?
The A140… even though I use it regularly. No two journeys are ever the same.
What’s your favourite East Anglian restaurant?
Very difficult to pick a favourite. There are so many great places to eat which I’ve been fortunate to go to.
What’s your favourite way to spend an East Anglian evening?
When I’m not chilling at home, catching up with friends.
What’s your favourite East Anglian landmark?
I’m a big fan of Woodbridge but the castles at Norwich, Orford and Framlingham each have their own charm.
What’s the best thing that happens in East Anglia every year?
Horse Racing’s Guineas Festival at Newmarket. Plus the British Touring Cars at Snetterton.
What is your specialist Mastermind subject?
If I had to nail one particular area I reckon music intros…. or sport!
What is always in your fridge?
What’s your simple philosophy of life?
Treat people the same way as you’d like to be treated yourself.
What’s your favourite film?
I’m not really a film buff but Star Wars (Episode 4) was the first I watched at the cinema with my mates. And ‘When Harry met Sally’ was the first in which I laughed out loud! But I haven’t gone one which I’d watch repeatedly.
What was your first job?
A stockroom assistant at WH Smith’s in Manchester
What is your most treasured possession?
My family and friends.
Who do you admire most?
My late mum, Myrtle May. For giving me the confidence to pursue my career.
What is your biggest indulgence?
Food, food… and more food. Just wish I ate less of it!
What do you like about yourself most?
Difficult question. Maybe my happy disposition and being nice to people.
Where is your favourite holiday destination?
So far it’s New Zealand’s North Island. Hopefully there are more places to visit in the coming weeks/months/years.
Best day of your life?
Most would say ‘wedding’ or ‘birth of child/children’. Those have yet to happen so being taken on by ITV Anglia has to be up there.
What’s your favourite breakfast?
An Ulster fry… basically Northern Ireland’s version of a ‘Full English’
What’s your favourite tipple?
Can’t choose between a good pint of Guinness and a good glass of Merlot.
What’s your hidden talent?
Pretty sure I don’t have one… well it hasn’t emerged so far.
When were you most embarrassed?
Being ill whilst commentating on a football match over the phone – it was for the old ‘Clubcall’ football service. Norwich City 0, Nottingham Forest 0, November 1991. Terrible.
What’s your earliest memory?
Posing for a photograph outside the family home in Manchester.
What song would you like played at your funeral?
Wow… haven’t thought of that yet.
Tell us something people don’t know about you?
I went to Burnage High School for Boys in Manchester - the same school which produced the Gallagher brothers, Noel and Liam – formerly of rock band Oasis. But their emergence as superstars came many years after I left!
What’s the worst thing anyone has ever said to you?
Being told you’re biased towards/against a team.
Tell us why you live here and nowhere else.
Because of my job, the people I work with, and the friends I’ve made. And it’s a lovely part of the country.
What do you want to tell our readers about most?
Watch out for a new ITV series starting in the New Year, featuring a team of England football legends whose waistlines have expanded since they hung up their boots. They’ll take on the challenge of getting back in shape and back on the pitch. It’s a two-part special called ‘Match Fit’.
This England team, led by manager Harry Redknapp, is a who’s who of former 80s and 90s international legends including; John Barnes, David Seaman, Robbie Fowler, Mark Wright, Matthew Le Tissier, Chris Waddle, Rob Lee, Ray Parlour, Lee Sharpe,Mark Chamberlain, Paul Merson, and Razor Ruddock. Our all-star 11 are getting together for one last job, but this time their goals are more about their waistlines than the touchlines.