BBC TV presenter and Grandstand star dies: Frank Bough Biography, Wiki, Age, Net Worth, Family, Wife, Death and Cause

Frank Bough Biography – Frank Bough Wiki

Frank Joseph Bough was an English television presenter. He was best known as the former host of BBC sports and current affairs shows including Grandstand, Nationwide and Breakfast Time, which he launched alongside Selina Scott and Nick Ross

He also launched the BBC’s Breakfast Time TV programme in 1983.


Famous for presenting, the TV star will be remembered for his role on BBC sports programme Grandstand.


During his high-flying career, the TV personality established himself as one of the highest paid presenters on the BBC.


A family friend told the BBC that bough died last Wednesday in a care home.


The star enjoyed a long career in broadcast before his retirement in 1998.


As well as Grandstand, he made his mark on TV shows including Nationwide and Breakfast Time.


Frank started out as a presenter on Sportsview in 1964 after he took on the role from Peter Dimmock.


Bough established himself as a TV personality and became one of the highest-paid presenters on the BBC.


However, his career came to an abrupt end in 1988 after the BBC sacked him following an expose by the News of the World.


Later he made the advantageous move to the BBC’s leading sports show Grandstand.


The sports fan cemented his status as a presenting legend.


He was a regular host on Grandstand for 15 years from 1968 until 1983.


But Frank was sacked from the BBC in 1988 over an alleged drugs and prostitutes scandal.


After leaving the BBC, Bough went on to present on ITV and Sky TV.


For the last 20 years he has been living with his wife Nesta Howells in Berkshire.


His cause of death is yet to be announced and no further details have been revealed.


Tributes have poured in for the presenter, with Piers Morgan tweeting: “RIP Frank Bough, 87.


“Star of Grandstand, Nationwide and Breakfast Time.


“His career was ruined by scandal, but he was one of the great live TV presenters. Sad news.”

Frank Bough Obituary

In a career spanning three decades, he won a reputation for his relaxed and unflappable style on camera.

He presented the BBC’s flagship sports programme, Grandstand, and launched the corporation’s Breakfast Time TV programme in 1983.

But his career abruptly ended after lurid tabloid revelations about his involvement with cocaine and call girls.

Francis Bough was born in a two-up, two-down terrace house in the Fenton area of Stoke-on-Trent on 15 January 1933.

His father ,who worked as an upholsterer, lost his job, and the family moved to Oswestry, Shropshire, where Bough attended the local grammar school.

He was a keen sportsman and also enjoyed acting, taking parts in a number of school Shakespeare productions, including Hamlet and Macbeth.

Although not particularly academic he won a scholarship to Merton College, Oxford, in the days when, as he later put it, “Oxford valued a good all-rounder”.

Despite being defeated by Cambridge in the Varsity match at Wembley, Blue was a talented footballer who won.


Bough held the National Service in the Royal Tank Regiment before graduating as an intern at ICI in Billingham, County Durham.


He continued to play amateur football in the North East, but became increasingly unhappy with his job and eventually decided that he wanted to become a broadcaster.


He haunted the BBC for two years before finally getting relief and became the host of the company’s regional show Home at Six, which aired from Newcastle.


It was later renamed Look North.



With his love and knowledge of sports, he took over Sportsview’s host from Peter Dimmock in 1964.


The program aired mid-week and included several pre-recorded items as well as football.


He also launched an 18-year post that later became the Sports Personality of the Year, hosting the BBC’s Sports Review of the Year.


Bough was part of the BBC’s World Cup commentary team in 1966, and he was the subject of one of the tournament’s biggest woes, particularly when North Korea beat Italy 1-0 at Ayresome Park in Middlesbrough.


His assignment at Sportsview came to an end in 1968, when David Coleman took the reins and the name of the show was changed to Sportsnight Coleman.


However, it marked Bough’s transition to the BBC’s flagship Saturday afternoon TV sports program, Grandstand.


In the days before the sport sold its rights to the highest bidder, the Grandstand covered a range of sports each week, including high-profile events such as the Olympic Games, FA Cup finals, and the Grand National.


These are mixed with regular horse racing, athletics and rugby league depending on the season.



Bough’s bomb-proof presentation style was on the Grandstand, with numerous live streams giving the potential for things to go wrong.


Here, it has earned its reputation as an oasis of calm, no matter what technical glitches may be.


His style prompted Michael Parkinson to comment that “if my life was dependent on the proper running of a TV show, he would be the one I would want to be responsible for.”


Bough once asked the secret of his ability to hold his head, while everything was losing his, he simply said: “I have a very long insurance.”


He was a perfectionist, with or without long term insurance. He said: “We’re not just in the business of continuing with this program.”


In 1972 he began presenting Nationwide, the news program that followed the BBC’s evening news.


It was a fairly light-hearted program that was generally disabled for BBC regions to focus on local news.


However, he recalled some resistance at the BBC’s current affairs, which was surprised that a sports man would present one of his programs.


That same year, Bough had a sad experience broadcasting the BBC news of the Munich Olympics, in which 11 members of the Israeli team were killed by members of the Palestinian Black September organization.


“It was a strange situation,” he said later. “Athletics continued while people were killed.”


Record TV

He appeared on Morecambe and the Wise Christmas Show in 1977 as one of television’s most recognizable faces.


Along with a number of other hosts, including Rugby league commentator Eddie Waring, he wore a sailor suit to perform a series of performances from the South Pacific.


The show attracted more than 21 million viewers and is still a record for British television.


By now, Bough was getting tired of Grandstand.


He still liked to be at the forefront of major sporting events, but as he put it later: “When it was Widnes v Batley on a rainy November afternoon, I started to feel like I was acting.”


Hearing that the BBC was about to launch a new breakfast TV service in 1983, Bough met with editor Ron Neil.


Short time

At that time, very few servers had the experience of delivering long and largely unwritten programs, and his role at Grandstand got him a job.


It proved natural when the BBC launched Breakfast Time in January 1983, its relaxed and laid-back style caught the attention of its early morning audiences.


Presentation mate Nick Ross later recalled that Bough brought a much-needed sense of calmness and tranquility to the show.


Tired of the early morning hours in 1987, Bough left Breakfast to present the Vacation program.

It was to be a short stint. In 1988 he was sacked by the BBC after a newspaper carried revelations that he had indulged in cocaine parties with call girls.


The story came as a particular shock, given Bough’s hitherto clean-cut family-man image.


He eventually returned to broadcasting, including fronting ITV’s Rugby World Cup coverage, but his renaissance was short-lived.


In 1992 he was photographed leaving a sadomasochistic prostitute’s flat that, according to newspaper reports, featured a cage and school canes.


There was a brief return to the airwaves on an independent local radio station but, by 1996, Bough had disappeared from public view.


In the following years he remained out of sight, turning down a chance to return to the screen when Breakfast celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2006.


However, in 2014 it was announced that he would step back into the public arena and contribute to a BBC documentary looking at 30 years of Breakfast TV in the UK.


Frank Bough was one of Britain’s most consummate broadcasters, who won a legion of fans for his calm and friendly manner.


He was always worried that he would be remembered only for the tabloid headlines rather than for his many successful years in front of a camera.


“It was a brief but appalling period in my life,” Bough said. “Don’t condemn my entire career for a brief episode I regret.”