Bill Crozier

Bill Crozier

Bill Crozier started at a very early age in the entertainment business making his first public appearance at the age of 6½ years, playing solo piano in a local drill hall to an admiring family and a somewhat less enchanted audience. His mop of curly hair won the day — a crowd pleaser he has long since had to manage without.

A sickly child, he spent a large part of his childhood either going to or coming from the Great Ormond Street Hospital for Sick Children — except for a year in a convalescent home in Wiltshire, an experience from which that county has only just begun to recover.

He had a long and very successful career in motor engineering, nursery gardening and journalism (having been a grease monkey, muck spreader and paper boy in quick succession). He finally found a niche in domestic service, where he quickly climbed the social ladder from hall boy to fourth footman in about eighteen months, and managed to combine these not too arduous duties with the running of the local dance band. Bill’s natural progression to the butler’s pantry and the green baize apron, was impeded by the even more grandiose schemes of another member of the lower orders — an Austrian gentleman in the decorating trade. Since then Bill has been a strong supporter of D.I.Y.

Bill Crozier

Bill Crozier seen here with some of the hundreds of postcards received for his very popular 2-way link with RTE Radio in Dublin.

He joined the R.A.F.V.R. with his eyes on a pair of wings, but his feet stayed on the ground — they failed him on eyesight. He became one of the original ground gunners, before they were elevated to the title of R.A.F. Regiment, and finished up a marksman. (That was the second medical mistake for which he admits to being eternally grateful. The first occurred at his parturition, when the attendant doctor shook his head sadly and walked away.) Owing to an oversight, during the battle of the Bulge he found himself in the front line. Deciding that was no place for a devout coward, he started to run, but, with his usual inattention to detail went in the wrong direction, and bumped into a patrol of the enemy who surrendered to him, no doubt mistaking his terrorstriken leap for one of aggression. He was politely led to a huge camp inhabited by 2,000 German W.A.A.F. and would probably still be there if hostilities had not abruptly ceased.

After that, becoming a Senior Gunnery Instructor seemed natural.

In 1948, he joined the staff of B.F.N. in Hamburg, and remained with them until 1965, presenting the Cologne end of Two-Way Family Favourites with Jean Metcalfe for the last years of his sojourn in Germany. Since then Bill has been a freelance writer/broadcaster working as he puts it “for anyone and everyone”.

Having presented ‘Cozier with Crozier’, a nightly show for Hallam since the station opened in October 1974, he admits to being entirely happy in Sheffield and promises to stay forever — which might give lovers of wild life and a peaceful existence some food for thought! His ever faithful companion, Florence (Nightingale), merely preens herself and dreams of Berkeley Square.

For example, he wrote an appreciation of the writer Scott Fitzgerald, which was broadcast world-wide; wrote and presented two programmes on Operetta, which, two months later, the BBC asked him to repeat because of the listener reaction; did two nine-month long stints on “Music Through Midnight”; took over the presentation of “Those Were The Days”, ostensibly for three months, and that period was extended to six years; became a freelance producer with the BBC and was responsible for “Roundabout” for many months, as well as hundreds of recording sessions with well known singers and orchestras; took part in the special musical programme for Noel Coward, in which he spoke to people like Anna Neagle, Jessie Mathews, Hermione Gingold, Rita Streich, Francis Day etc., etc.; capped all that by becoming the studio producer for the Jimmy Young Show, which he handled for over 18 months.

1975 ● THIS IS TRANSDIFFUSION