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Adil Ray
Adil Ray.JPG
Adil Ray in Turkey, 2012
Born (1974-04-26) 26 April 1974 (age 46)
Birmingham, England
  • Television
  • Radio
Notable works and roles

Adil Ray (Urdu: عادل رے‎), OBE (born 26 April 1974) is a British actor, comedian and radio and television presenter. Ray also stars in the BBC One comedy Citizen Khan, which he created and co-writes, as well as presenting on various BBC radio stations and working as a relief presenter on ITV's Good Morning Britain.

Early life

Adil Ray was born in Birmingham, West Midlands, England to a Pakistani Punjabi father, from Lahore, and a Kenyan Indian mother.[1] He was brought up in the suburb of Yardley.[2] Ray's father Abdul worked as a bus driver for almost forty years. His mother worked for the Immigration Appeals Department in the Civil Service and was of partial Buganda ancestry.[1] Ray's parents divorced during his adolescence.

Ray attended Yardley Junior and Infant School and Handsworth Grammar School, his first day being the day after the Handsworth Riots in 1985.[3] Ray was a keen cricketer and represented Birmingham and District Premier League side West Bromwich Dartmouth from during the late-1980s and early-1990s. Ray later graduated from the University of Huddersfield with a 2:1 in BA (Hons) in Marketing.[3]


Ray began his career as a radio host on a pirate radio station in Huddersfield while studying at the University of Huddersfield, and DJing at the university venue Eden (1992). Later, during his placement year, he landed a job with a new small Asian radio station in Birmingham where he spent the first half of the year, before moving on to Choice FM (1995). In 1997, Ray landed a spot with Galaxy 105, a job that made him the first full-time British South Asian presenter to host a mainstream commercial radio show in the UK.[citation needed] He then joined Century Radio in Manchester, Radio Aire Leeds and Ministry of Sound Radio.


Ray joined the BBC Asian Network in 2002 to present the late night Adil Ray Show.[3] In 2003, Ray was the first to interview and champion R&B star Jay Sean.[citation needed] In May 2006, Ray took over the drive time afternoon slot, and from January 2009 he presented the station's Breakfast Show from 7:00am each weekday.[2] In 2008 The Adil Ray Show won the best radio show category at the UK Asian Music Awards.[4] Ray left the BBC Asian Network on 4 June 2010 to pursue other radio and television work.[citation needed]

Ray has been a regular on BBC Radio 5 Live presenting the late night show, the Football and Cricket 606 phone ins, Victoria Derbyshire, Weekend Breakfast and Fighting Talk.[3] Ray has also fronted documentaries for BBC Radio 4, including Picturing Britain[5] and Towering Ambition.[6] He has also appeared in the award-winning BBC Asian Network radio soap, Silver Street.[3]

He also presented the British Asian Arts and Lifestyle show Desi DNA on BBC Two, and hosted the BBC Four programme Tales from Europe where he explored the 24-hour lifestyle in Madrid. In 2007, Ray presented the Royal Television Society award-nominated show Is it Cos I Is Black? for BBC Three where he looked at the issue of political correctness.[2][7] He has also filmed a documentaries strand for BBC Two called Explore, in which he reported from Argentina and Turkey.[7] In 2010 he appeared in the BBC Two comedy show Bellamy's People, playing characters including self-appointed "community leader" Mr Khan and Birmingham "Muslim DJ" MC Raa.[8]

In 2010, Ray reprised his role as Mr Khan to feature in his own web series for BBC Comedy[9] to cover the UK general election. Mr Khan returned later in the year with a follow up BBC Comedy web series about the cricket to coincide with the Pakistan national team's visit to England that year.[10]

In the summer of 2010, Ray joined BBC Radio 5 Live as part of their cricket coverage, travelling to Sri Lanka and Bangladesh to cover the 2011 Cricket World Cup. He can often be heard presenting the 5 Live late night show. Ray continues to make documentaries for BBC Radio 4 including recently 'The Real Mr Khan' a documentary looking into the role of community leaders. Ray also tackled the issue of sex and grooming in the British Pakistani community in a BBC Radio 4 documentary entitled The Sex Lives of British Pakistanis that broadcast on 4 July 2011.

Ray covered the issue of grooming on a highly acclaimed BBC Three documentary in December 2011 – Exposed: Groomed For Sex.

Meanwhile, in 2011 Ray continued his venture into comedy including the radio pilot 'Sparkhill Sound' that broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on 12 May 2011. A community radio station set in Birmingham. Ray was both writer and performer alongside Anil Gupta (writer), Gary Pillai and Vineeta Rishi (cast).

In 2015, Ray guest presented three episodes of The One Show alongside Alex Jones.[3]


In August 2018 Ray temporarily replaced Piers Morgan as a co-host on ITV's Good Morning Britain.[11]

From February 2019, Ray has become the main holiday relief presenter for Good Morning Britain, appearing regularly during the February, April and Summer Holidays.

In 2020, Ray was scheduled twice weekly during the summer holidays in July and August, covering for the main presenters during their summer break. During this time Ray continued the show's coverage of the Coronavirus Pandemic, most often presenting on Thursdays with Charlotte Hawkins and Fridays with Ranvir Singh.[12]

Citizen Khan

In October 2011, Ray performed the co-written comedy Citizen Khan at the BBC Salford Sitcom Showcase, centred on Ray's comedy creation Mr Khan and his long suffering family. Commissioned as a BBC One primetime series, the Asian Muslim sitcom follows the trials and tribulations of big-hearted, loud-mouthed, tight-fisted, self-appointed community leader Mr Khan (Adil Ray) and his long suffering family – wife Mrs Khan (Shobu Kapoor) and daughters Shazia (Maya Sondhi) and Alia (Bhavna Limbachia).

The six 30-minute episodes of Citizen Khan were commissioned by Danny Cohen, BBC One Controller and Cheryl Taylor, Controller of Comedy Commissioning and has been produced by BBC In-House Comedy. The Executive Producer is Mark Freeland, the Producer is Paul Schlesinger (Twenty Twelve) and the Director is Nick Wood (Fresh Meat, Not Going Out, Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps). Citizen Khan is written by Anil Gupta and Richard Pinto (The Kumars at No 42, Goodness Gracious Me) with Adil Ray.[citation needed]

Personal life

Ray is a keen cricket fan and supports his local team Warwickshire and the national team of his father's origin, Pakistan. He is also a fan of Aston Villa F.C.[13]

Honours, awards and nominations

  • UK Asian Music Award – Best Radio Show (2008)
  • Royal Television Award Nomination – Is It Coz I Is Black (2007)

In January 2013, Ray was nominated for the Arts and Culture Awareness award at the British Muslim Awards.[14]

Ray was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2016 Birthday Honours for services to broadcasting.[15]



Year Title Role Broadcaster
2003 The Last Word Presenter ITV
2006 Tales from Europe: Madrid BBC Four
2006 Inside Out BBC Two
2006 Desi DNA Series 1
2007 The Heaven and Earth Show BBC One
2007 Inside Out BBC Two
2007 Desi DNA Series 2
2007 Mischief: Is It Cos I Is Black? BBC Three
2008 Desi DNA Series 3 BBC Two
2008 Inside Out
2008 Explore
2010 Bellamy's People Actor
2010 Talk of the Terrace Contributor ESPN
2011 Exposed: Groomed for Sex Presenter BBC Three
2010-12 Lorraine Contributor ITV
2012-16 Citizen Khan Actor/Writer BBC One
2013 The Matt Lucas Awards Himself
2014 Celebrity Mastermind Contestant
2014 Would I Lie to You? Himself
2015 The One Show Stand-in presenter (3 episodes)
2016 Pointless Celebrities Himself
2017- Ackley Bridge Sadiq Nawaz Channel 4
2017 Who Do You Think You Are Himself BBC One
2018- Good Morning Britain Stand-in Presenter ITV


Year Title Role Broadcaster
2001 The Adil Ray Show Presenter Choice FM
2001 The Drivetime Show Presenter Galaxy 105
2001 The Adil Ray Show Presenter Century Radio
2002 The Adil Ray Show Presenter BBC Asian Network
2006 Twenty Minutes Contributor BBC Radio 3
2006 The Drivetime Show Presenter BBC Asian Network
2008 Silver Street Actor BBC Asian Network
2009 The Breakfast Show Presenter BBC Asian Network
2009 Excess Baggage Contributor BBC Radio 4
2009 Picturing Britain Presenter BBC Radio 4
2010 Towering Ambition Presenter BBC Radio 4
2010 The Adil Ray Breakfast Show Presenter BBC Asian Network
2010 Never Mind The Bhangra Presenter BBC Radio 4
2010 The Gethin Jones Show Contributor BBC Radio 5 Live
2010 The Cricket Forum Presenter BBC Radio 5 Live
2010 606 Presenter BBC Radio 5 Live
2010 Up All Night Presenter BBC Radio 5 Live
2011 Heroes of 2010 Presenter BBC Radio 5 Live
2011 Cricket World Cup coverage Presenter BBC Radio 5 Live
2011 Sparkhill Sound Writer/Performer BBC Radio 4
2011 The Private Lives of British Pakistanis Presenter BBC Radio 4
2011 The Victoria Derbyshire Show Presenter BBC Radio 5 Live
2011 The Real Mr Khan Presenter BBC Radio 4
2011–12 The Tony Livesey Show Presenter BBC Radio 5 Live
2018 The Zoe Ball Show Stand-In Presenter BBC Radio 2


  1. ^ a b Hogan, Michael (27 July 2017). "Who Do You Think You Are? Adil Ray's odyssey to Africa was rawly emotional: review". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 28 July 2017.
  2. ^ a b c "Adil Ray biography". Archived from the original on 11 February 2010. Retrieved 5 February 2010.
  3. ^ a b c d e f Rodger, James (13 August 2018). "Who is Adil Ray? Birmingham star replacing Piers Morgan on GMB". birminghammail. Retrieved 5 March 2019.
  4. ^ "Adil Ray wins gong for best radio show". Asian News. 10 March 2008. Archived from the original on 16 May 2008. Retrieved 28 February 2010.
  5. ^ "Series 2, Beyond the Security Fence". 9 October 2010. Retrieved 5 March 2013.
  6. ^ "Series 2, A Tale of Two Cities". 14 July 2010. Retrieved 5 March 2013.
  7. ^ a b "Adil Ray: 'Be real, and the rest will follow naturally' – Media, News". The Independent. 11 August 2008. Retrieved 27 August 2009.
  8. ^ "Adil Ray in new BBC Two comedy". The Asian News. 14 January 2010. Archived from the original on 21 January 2010. Retrieved 5 February 2010.
  9. ^ "BBC Comedy – Mr Khan". BBC Comedy.
  10. ^ "Mr Khan – Youtube". BBC Comedy.
  11. ^ Hunt, Amy. "Viewers divided as this presenter is announced to replace Piers Morgan on GMB", Woman & Home, 16 August 2018. Retrieved on 12 November 2019.
  12. ^ "Good Morning Britain: Adil Ray replaces Ben Shephard". Entertainment Daily UK. 16 July 2020. Retrieved 30 July 2020.
  13. ^ Ireland, Shane (28 February 2019). "Good Morning Britain host Adil Ray wades into Leeds racism row". birminghammail. Retrieved 5 March 2019.
  14. ^ "British Muslim Awards 2015 finalists unveiled". Asian Image. 23 January 2015. Retrieved 1 November 2015.
  15. ^ "No. 61608". The London Gazette (Supplement). 11 June 2016. p. B14.

External links

This page was last edited on 10 September 2020, at 21:16
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