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Judith Chalmers

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Judith Chalmers

Born (1935-10-10) 10 October 1935 (age 86)
Gatley, Cheshire, England
OccupationTelevision presenter
Years active1950s–present
Spouse(s)Neil Durden-Smith (m. 1964–present)
Children2, including Mark Durden Smith

Judith Rosemary Locke Chalmers OBE (born 10 October 1935)[1] is a British television presenter who is best known for presenting the travel programme Wish You Were Here...? from 1974 to 2003.[2]

Early life

Chalmers was born in Gatley, Cheshire.[3] Her father was an architect and her mother a medical secretary.[4] She had a sister, Sandra Chalmers. Both sisters were educated at Withington Girls' School, an independent day school in Fallowfield near Withington, Manchester.[5]


She began broadcasting for the BBC when she was only 13, after being selected for BBC Northern Children's Hour by producer Trevor Hill.[6] Her younger sister Sandra, who was later editor of Woman's Hour, also performed on Children's Hour.[7] Chalmers presented many programmes from Manchester, including Children's Television Club which later metamorphosed into Blue Peter based in London.[8] She spent some time at secretarial college in Manchester in the early 1950s.[9]

In the 1960s, she presented two major BBC radio programmes: Family Favourites and Woman's Hour.[10][11] She also appeared as the original Susan in The Clitheroe Kid, and was a foil for Ken Dodd in his radio show.[12][13] Chalmers presented ballroom dancing competition programme Come Dancing for the BBC from 1961 to 1965.[14]

During the 1970s, Chalmers regularly presented ITV's daytime magazine programme Good Afternoon and its successors, which included Afternoon Plus and A Plus.[15] She started presenting ITV's holiday programme Wish You Were Here? in 1974 and continued in this role until 2003, initially working alongside Chris Kelly, and later with John Carter.[16]

In the 1980s Chalmers was a regular host of the Miss World contest on ITV, also presenting the associated UK beauty pageants such as Miss United Kingdom and the British Beauty Championships.[17] Chalmers was also presenter of BBC Radio 2's mid-morning show from 1990 to 1992, taking over from Ken Bruce, who took over the show again following Chalmers's departure from the station in 1992.[18]

In 2001, she appeared on Lily Savage's Blankety Blank.[19] She took part in an episode of the BBC 2 series Celebrity Antiques Road Trip, with her son Mark, in 2013.[20]

Her television appearances in later years have been limited to short spots on chat show programmes such as Good Morning Britain, Lorraine and Graham Norton's chat shows.[21][22][23]

In 2017, Chalmers took part in Channel 5’s ‘Celebrity Taste of Italy’.[24]

Personal life

Chalmers has been married to sports commentator Neil Durden-Smith since 1964.[25] She has two children, Mark and Emma, and lives in north London.[26] Mark is also a television presenter.[27] She also has six grandchildren.[28]

She was awarded an OBE in 1994.[29]


  1. ^ "FreeBMD Home Page".
  2. ^ "Judith Chalmers OBE | Travel Broadcaster | Gordon Poole Agency". Gordon Poole Agency Ltd. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  3. ^ "Sandra Chalmers obituary". the Guardian. 2015-02-09. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  4. ^ Sandra Chalmers Obituary in The Times p 56, 27 February 2015
  5. ^ "In Memoriam: Sandra Locke Chalmers [Class of 1958]". Withington Girls' School. 2015-02-11. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  6. ^ "Speaking to you at Home". Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  7. ^ Sue McGregor "Sandra Chalmers obituary", The Guardian, 9 February 2015
  8. ^ "Speaking to you at Home". Retrieved 2021-12-17.
  9. ^ Miss Judith Chalmers, OBE Archived 2013-12-03 at the Wayback Machine, Retrieved 2013-11-19.
  10. ^ "Family Favourites 1 August 1945". Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  11. ^ "Judith Chalmers OBE | Travel Broadcaster | Gordon Poole Agency". Gordon Poole Agency Ltd. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  12. ^ "Clitheroe Kid". Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  13. ^ "BBC Radio 4 Extra - The Ken Dodd Show, From 20/10/1963". BBC. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  14. ^ "Judith Chalmers OBE | Travel Broadcaster | Gordon Poole Agency". Gordon Poole Agency Ltd. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  15. ^ Good Afternoon - Mary Berry Simnel Cake, retrieved 2021-12-16
  16. ^ "Judith Chalmers OBE | Travel Broadcaster | Gordon Poole Agency". Gordon Poole Agency Ltd. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  17. ^ Beautiesofuniverseandworld (2020-07-29). "Miss World 1985". MISS WORLD HISTORY. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  18. ^ "Judith Chalmers OBE | Travel Broadcaster | Gordon Poole Agency". Gordon Poole Agency Ltd. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  19. ^ Lily Savage's Blankety Blank. 18 February 2001. ITV. Repeated 25 August 2016 on Challenge TV.
  20. ^ "TV presenter Judith Chalmers battles under the hammer at Stroud Auction Rooms", Stroud News & Journal, 15 July 2013. Retrieved 2013-11-19.
  21. ^ Judith Chalmers on Benidorm | Good Morning Britain, retrieved 2021-12-16
  22. ^ Judith Chalmers on the Joys of Travel | Lorraine, retrieved 2021-12-16
  23. ^ "BBC Radio 2 - The Chris Evans Breakfast Show, Wednesday - Graham Norton sits in for Chris with special guest Judith Chalmers". BBC. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  24. ^ "Judith Chalmers OBE | Travel Broadcaster | Gordon Poole Agency". Gordon Poole Agency Ltd. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  25. ^ "Judith Chalmers". IMDb. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  26. ^ "Judith Chalmers". IMDb. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  27. ^ "Mark Durden-Smith". Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  28. ^ "My Life In Travel: Judith Chalmers". The Independent. 2009-09-18. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
  29. ^ "Judith Chalmers OBE | Travel Broadcaster | Gordon Poole Agency". Gordon Poole Agency Ltd. Retrieved 2021-12-16.
This page was last edited on 17 January 2022, at 21:59
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