David Dimbleby

Kirsty Young's castaway this week is the broadcaster David Dimbleby. When he was born, in 1938, his father Richard was already a national institution. Richard recorded reports from bombers flying over Germany, went to Belsen at the end of the war and, of course, commentated on the funeral of King George VI and subsequent coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. In Desert Island Discs, David tells Kirsty how his father had tried to steer him away from journalism. But he believes that it is a job that is addictive and so it was perhaps inevitable that he would become part of the fifth generation of Dimblebys to pursue a career in the media.

He is best known for the big state events - he has anchored the BBC's general election coverage since 1979 and commentated during the funerals of both Princess Diana and the Queen Mother - throughout them all, he says, his method is not to think of the audience of millions, but instead to imagine himself sitting on a sofa, next to just one viewer, saying as little as he needs to in order to explain what is happening.

[Taken from the original programme material for this archive edition of Desert Island Discs]

Favourite track: Song that You'd Like by Kate Dimbleby Band
Book: Collected essays by Michel de Montaigne
Luxury: A collection of drawing books, pencils and varnish.

Release date:

Available now

45 minutes

Last on

Fri 29 Feb 2008 09:00


Role Contributor
PresenterKirsty Young
Interviewed GuestDavid Dimbleby

Featured in...

The Desert Island Discs podcast

The Desert Island Discs podcast

Subscribe or download individual episodes.

Listen to over 2,000 programmes


Desert island discs 75th anniversary 1920x1080

Read the surprising things we've learned about some stand-out castaways.

The 75th anniversary of Desert Island Discs

Desert Island Discs at 75 1920x1080

Featuring David Beckham, the funniest and most moving moments, animations and quizzes.

The Lark Ascending – The People’s Desert Island Disc

The Lark Ascending – The People’s Desert Island Disc

Why does Vaughan Williams’s masterpiece appeal to so many castaways?