Wynn Wheldon

Kicking the Bar
  • Kicking the Bar

  • Written by his son, Kicking the Bar is the comprehensive biography of Huw Wheldon, one of the most well-respected and influential media figures in British history – with a foreword by Sir David Attenborough. As a former BBC broadcaster and executive, Huw Wheldon ran the network in the 60s and 70s during a tumultuous period many describe as the 'Golden Age of Television', with programmes such as Civilization, Alistair Cooke's America, The Ascent of Man, Steptoe and Son, Till Death Us Do Part, and Dad's Army.

    Wynn Wheldon weaves the story of his father's life, tracing back to his forebears in nineteenth-century Wales and their strong protestant ethic that would influence his future endeavours, and culminating in a moving chapter describing the final months of his life.

    In between, he explores his father's childhood and education – revisiting his time at the London School of Economics; his service in the Second World War (including landing by glider in Normandy and passing through Belsen days after its liberation); and his eventual foray into the arts and media, leading iconic entertainers and broadcasters through the extraordinary new medium of television.

    Kicking the Bar is partly a fascinating history of the remarkable man who helped shape Britain's cultural landscape, and partly the tender reflections of a son on his relationship with his father.

Wynn Wheldon was born in London in 1958. He has worked in cultural exchange, politics, publishing and broadcasting. His poetry and prose (fiction and non-fiction) has been published in many magazines and newspapers, and he currently reviews books for The Spectator. His short stories have won prizes, and his poetry pamphlet Tiny Disturbances was published in 2012. Among the many 'ty bach' (Welsh, meaning 'small room') books he has authored, he is most proud of The Father and Child Companion and Porches. He is the lyricist for the Jack Rabbit Project and a founder member of the Elbow Room Writers Collective. He is married, has three adult sons, and lives in north London.