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The Rhondda Lip May 2023

Retired journalist David Edwards, recalls stories from his reporting days.

I won’t forget my “Radio Times” with Max Boyce.
Many moons ago I worked for a Press Agency which supplied news and sports stories to the media.

One particular day the boss said he needed me to cover a rugby match in Glynneath.
He told me it was the usual copy for the Echo, Western Mail and also a radio summary for Swansea Sound.
He said: “It’s just a one minute match update at half time and then a one minute summary at full time.
Hang on,” said me, “I may get away with the written word but not with the spoken word. I’ve never done radio before.
You’ll be fine” said he.

Max Boyce

And so I reluctantly arrived at the Glynneath rugby ground well before kick-off. Mobile phones were a thing of the distant future so I had to find a telephone somewhere. The club secretary said: “There’s a phone here in the clubhouse. You are welcome to use that.

With half time approaching I went over to the clubhouse and nervously made the call to Swansea Sound.
The programme producer said: “Give me a few minutes Dave and then I’ll be ready for your report.
Suddenly another voice came on the phone line.
Can I speak to Dai please?” said the voice.
Can you get off the line please?” said a panic stricken me.
Seconds later another voice came over the phone..”Is the doctor there?.”

Oh no!
The next voice was that of the producer…
“Okay, Dave I’ll count down from ten then go ahead and do your summary.”
Hold it… you can’t. There’s a crossed line here…...”
Can you find another phone quickly?” said he.

Thank goodness the next voice I heard was from renowned entertainer Max Boyce who was behind the bar.
Everything alright?” he asked.
When I explained my dialling dilemma he led me outside the club and pointed to a house across the way.
Go to that house and tell the lady who answers the door that Max sent you to use the phone.”

The door was opened by a lovely elderly lady, who I believe was Max’s mother, who not only gave me the warmest of welcomes but a cup of tea and a cake as well.

I did manage to do both my match summaries although a crossed line nearly killed a budding radio star.

I never did get the chance to thank Max.