Feeds

UK telly in coke blizzard shock

Charlie abuse rife, says former producer

The Power of One Brief: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

A former BBC producer has claimed that the UK's TV industry is snowed under with charlie, and the "off-the-wall" brilliance of many stars is down to prodigious intake of nose ajax.

That's according to Sarah Graham, a BBC Radio 5, Children's BBC and Channel 4's The Big Breakfast vet, who has recounted the scale of the abuse to a Home Affairs Select Committee hearing on the cocaine trade.

She told the hearing: "One of the things about the media... is that, as your addiction progresses, certain behaviours which would not be tolerated in a normal job can actually be spun to be part of your creative genius or part of your extraordinary personality."

She added: "There is a culture within the media and within the celebrity world that is very relaxed around the use of cocaine. It's seen as something that is socially acceptable in certain areas, in industries where this 'work hard, party hard' ethos exists.

"The hype about drugs is that all these successful people are doing drugs... I bought into the showbiz myth of cocaine being part of that success."

The Telegraph offers Graham's description of her first day at the Beeb back in the 1990s, when she was "fresh out of university and working as a researcher for Radio 5", and enjoying a night out in Soho with her show's presenter and producer.

She said: "We were celebrating the end of a live show. I had a few glasses of champagne and I was asked if I would like to go to the toilet and do some cocaine. I'm ashamed to say I didn't really know very much about cocaine beyond the hype - celebrity, glamour, success - that goes with it and I unfortunately went to the toilet and took cocaine and I believe that changed the course of my life from that point on."

Indeed, Graham then fell into a ten-year addition to cocaine, which ended with her in a rehab clinic in 2001. She now works as a drugs counsellor and a spokeswoman for the government's drugs information service, Frank.

Asked whether any of her coke-fuelled former colleagues still worked in the industry, Graham confirmed: "Some of those people are still in place, some of them are behaving in off-the-wall ways and are enabled left, right and centre, and people bow down to them. Some of this stuff is rewarded - it depends where you are and who you are." ®

Seven Steps to Software Security

More from The Register

next story
NSA man: 'Tell me about your Turkish connections'
Spooks ask Dabbsy to suggest a nice hotel with pool
Carlos: Slim your working week to just three days of toil
'Midas World' vision suggests you retire later, watch more tellie and buy more stuff
Motorist 'thought car had caught fire' as Adele track came on stereo
'FIRE' caption on dashboard prompts dunderheaded hard shoulder halt
Yahoo! Japan! launches! service! for! the! dead!
If you're reading this email, I am no longer alive
Plucky Rockall podule man back on (proper) dry land
Bold, barmy Brit adventurer Nick Hancock escapes North Atlantic islet
Russia sends SEX-CRAZED GECKOS to SPAAAAACE!
In space... no one can hear you're green...
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.