Bob Mills

Bob Mills

Date of birth: 30-11-1956
Bob Mills left school early to join the merchant navy – but quit just nine days into his training.

He drifted around London for a while, working valet in King's Cross, until he discovered the alternative comedy scene, paying £1 to see Mark Thomas and Mark Steel at the Market Tavern in Islington in 1983. Two years later he started on the London scene himself.

He became best known for the late-night cult show In Bed With MeDinner, in which he commented on documentary video footage. He also hosted ITV's daytime game show Win Lose Or Draw, as well as LWT’s There's Only One Brian Moore and Dial Midnight, plus Not A Lot Of People Know That for BBC1 H

In 1995 he starred in Channel 4's The Show, eight one hour programmes featuring fly-on-the-wall film of the making of a real chat show.

The following year, he wrote Bob Martin – a behind-the-scenes show about a fictional chat show that game Michael Barrymore his acting debut, but was criticised for being a pale British imitation of The Larry Sanders Show.

His writing career has also included the six-part comedy-drama Northern Lights, an episode of Channel 4’s Shameless and the 2006 film Pierrepoint that starred Timothy Spall as Britain’s last hangman.

A Leyton Orient fan, he occasionally appears on BBC Five Live's Fighting Talk and writes a regular column in the Orient programme. He often sits in for Danny Baker on BBC London.

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BBC 'got it wrong' over Clare Balding jokes

Bob Mills said she could be 'cured' of homosexuality

The BBC has apologised for a radio show in which comic Bob Mills discussed ‘curing’ Clare Balding of homosexuality.

Corporation bosses have admitted they ‘got it wrong’ over Saturday’s broadcast of the Radio 5 Live show Fighting Talk.

During a section of the show called Defend The Indefensible, host Colin Murray asked Mills to argue the case for the statement: ‘Give me 20 minutes with her and I'm sure I could turn around Clare Balding.’

In his reply Mills said that Balding was a ‘horse woman’ who ‘appreciates... a bit of power between her thighs’.

He then added: ‘All I am saying is, there is not a woman in the world who cannot be cured.’

Boos were heard from the 5,000-strong audience in Liverpool's Echo Arena, where the show was broadcast live as part of the station’s Big Day Out.

Five viewers complained about the segment, which has now been removed from the iPlayer catch-up service.

Ben Summerskill, from gay rights campaign group Stonewall, called the show ‘canteen bullying from the 1960s'.

In a statement, the BBC said: ‘Fighting Talk is a live programme and on this occasion we got it wrong.The Defending the Indefensible item was inappropriate and as such we have removed this short section of the programme from iPlayer.’

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Published: 3 Jun 2013

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