The nominations for the Aria awards were announced earlier this week. They’re the industry awards that radio folk in the UK hand out to each other celebrating excellence in our industry.
There’s an impressive list of the great and the good including the best showing from Scotland in some time including two Station of the Year nods for stations that have a big part of my heart – Forth & Clyde.
But one nomination made me happy on a whole new level.
Gary Muircroft ran the programming for one of the major groups in Scotland until a couple of years ago and when the inevitable happened he did the right thing and decided to chase an ambition he’d had for some time. So he started training for a career in nursing – a gig that his radio skills, empathy and passion made him a great candidate for. It’s also a much more stable calling.
But when you’re as good as he is something else is inevitable.
Challenger brand Go Radio got serious about asserting itself in the market and approached Gary about coming back on air. Thankfully he did and his breakfast show is one I dip into regularly.
Now he’s been nominated for “Radio Times Moment of the Year” for a segment where he opened up about his IVF journey and his love for Fox – potentially the most famous vegan baby in Scotland.
It was personal, warm and engaging. Exactly what great radio can be. It wasn’t a contrived, micro-managed campaign. Just the work of an excellent broadcaster.
So I’m glad Gary pressed the pause button on the nursing career for now. He’s helped more people with one on-air moment than most of us will do in a lifetime.
He also has proven once again that broadcasting isn’t like any other job. We really don’t do it for the money (though that’s nice) and we certainly don’t do it because we’re addicted to it.
It’s closer to a vocation. We want to sit in a room and get through the day with people we’ve never met – offering support, friendship and maybe a few chuckles along the way.
There may be a pause button but there’s no stop button. Especially when you’re as committed as Gary!
Vote for Gary in the Arias here