Janice Long’s husband pays moving tribute to radio presenter who paved the way for women

BBC Radio DJ Janie Long died at the age of 66 after contracting pneumonia, leaving behind an incredible legacy

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Janice Long: BBC presenter dies aged 66

Janice Long ‘s husband said he’s lost the love of his life in an emotional tribute following her tragic death.

The trailblazing BBC Radio DJ died on Christmas Day at the age of 66 after contracting pneumonia, her agent confirmed on Boxing Day.

It’s believed the presenter’s condition led to multiple organ failure, but her exact cause of death is yet to be confirmed.

Her passing has left her husband Paul Berry utterly devastated.

He said in a moving tribute: “I’ve lost the love of my life and I’m going to spend the rest of it half a person. She had my back from the day we met, you couldn’t possibly ask for more love and loyalty from a wife.”

Janice with husband Paul and their son Fred


News UK Ltd/REX/Shutterstock)

Their daughter Blue also spoke out in an emotional tribute.

She said: “Mum I love you. You paved the way for me to have an incredible life. You were a trailblazer for so many women to go conquer and succeed.

“The first woman to host Top of the Pops and the first woman to have her own daily show on Radio 1. You have shown me that anything is possible and to never stop fighting for what you want and deserve.”

Son Fred added: “She wasn’t only a mum to me but a whole bunch of my friends that she took in and cared for and I’ll never forget everything she has done for me. She inspired me to be what I want and told me never to settle for anything less.”

As her loved ones said, Janice, who was the older sister of late entertainer Keith Chegwin, was an inspiration to many and paved the way for women in her industry.

Paul says Janice was the love of his life


David Crump/ANL/REX/Shutterstock)

Janice died on Christmas Day



Her career spanned five decades, beginning when she became a station assistant at BBC Radio Merseyside in Liverpool in 1979.

She went on to become the first women to have her own daily show on Radio 1.

She was also the first women to host Top of the Pops, taking the reigns on the show for five years.

Her career also saw her work for Radio 2, Greatest Hits Radio and set up her own radio station, Crash FM.

But it wasn’t always easy for her and she once spoke about how getting pregnant almost affected her career.

She paved the way for women in her industry


Liverpool Echo)

Speaking about her time at Radio 1, she once said: “It was very sexist at Radio 1 in the 80s. I got into trouble for getting pregnant and getting married. Of course, it has changed there now – thank God – but generally there is still a long way to go.”

She added: “I wasn’t bought up in a sexist home – dad did the housework, mum and dad both cooked and worked – it wasn’t about having a role, it was about being a team. I have never liked inequality.”

Confirming her tragic death on Boxing Day, her agent, Nigel Forsyth, confirmed the sad news in a statement: “Janice was a wonderful, warm human being and exceptional broadcaster.

“She told a brilliant story and always made you roar with laughter with her sharp wit. She will leave behind her husband Paul and two children who she thought the world of.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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