Sundays start at 4.30am for BBC WM’s Sunday breakfast presenter Llewela Bailey, who is also a part-time lecturer and chairman of Birmingham Press Club
TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF
I present the Sunday Breakfast show at BBC WM. I’m also a part-time lecturer at Staffordshire University and chairman of Birmingham Press Club. I’ve worked in journalism for nearly 40 years, most of it in TV, and feel very lucky to have had so much fun. I live in Kings Heath with my daughter Jess, and my grandson George. My other three children are nearby, so my home life is far from secluded!
HOW DO YOU GET INTO TOWN?
On a Sunday, my day begins with a 4.30am alarm call. I am at the Mailbox by 6am for a pre-programme chat with my producer. I drive in along blissfully empty Bristol Road and the centre is like a ghost town. On the days I’m teaching I get the train from Yardley Wood and then on to Stoke-on-Trent via Grand Central.
HOW’S THE COMMUTE?
In the summer, the drive to the BBC is problem-free. In winter, what should be a 15-minute journey needs planning with military precision. On one occasion, I got hit by another car in a blizzard, dug the wheels out and still made it live for the 7 o’clock pips.
IS BRUM A GOOD PLACE TO WORK IN?
The difference in Birmingham since I first arrived to work at ITV Central in 1989 is remarkable. There was very little to do outside the office, and a lunchtime trip to the shops meant just popping to Rackhams. Now it’s buzzing.
At work it’s chat over a Costa with producer Alex. When I get together with the Press Club team, we’re partial to Hotel du Vin. I like the Java Lounge in Moseley and often use the Mac Centre in Cannon Hill for meetings.
If I meet people for lunch to discuss Press Club matters, first it’s Bank in Brindleyplace or Bistro Pierre in Gas Street. I’ll often meet my boys at their Digbeth office where Baked in Brick is a favourite lunchtime venue. My son Jack founded Digbeth Dining Club and now my other son Harry works with him, so they know all the hidden culinary gems!
A brisk hike with the dogs or, depending on my mood, a saunter through one of the nearby parks. The thought of a gym fills me with dread, which can be attributed to my one and only go at running. I completed the London Marathon in 2011 and vowed I’d never wear lycra again!
WHERE’S YOUR FAVOURITE PART OF THE CITY?
The centre of Birmingham is always worth a walkabout. From the Council House, along Colmore Row and into St Philip’s Square. If you have time, take a moment inside the cathedral and just gaze at the decor.
AND HOW CAN IT BE MADE BETTER?
Birmingham, my adopted city, is wonderful and the regeneration has made it a place I’m fiercely proud of. My only moan is the need for all-night transport. At the moment getting out of the town centre means a costly taxi ride…