WHO'S WHO IN JUST A MINUTE!
Some info and comments on the cast of Just A Minute..... Click here to return to the main cast page

Hattie Hayridge

JAM Appearances:
Two as a panellist on television in 1994.
How she did:
Hattie seemed a pleasant woman but a bit out of place on a fast paced comedy show like this.
Who is she:
Hattie is a leading stand-up comic with a distinctive depressed and downtrodden style. She's best known for her role in Red Dwarf. She continues to perform live and write for others.
Links to transcripts:
1 2

Richard Herring

JAM Appearances:
9 as a panellist on radio in 2009-2012-2013-2014.
How he did:
Richard was into the spirit of the game, full of challenges and slightly naughty fun. But he wasn't very fluent when he had the subject.
Who is he:
Richard is a stand-up comedian who has flirted with controversy - his 2009 Edinburgh show was called Hitler's Moustache. But he's probably best known for radio work including That Was Then This Is Now.
Links to transcripts:
1 2 3

Kit Hesketh-Harvey

JAM Appearances:
44 including 40 as a panellist on radio in 1994-1995-1996-1997-1998-1999-2000-2001-2002-2003-2004-2005-2006-2007-2008-2009-2010-2012, and four as a panellist on television in 1994-1995.
How he did:
Kit is one of the better performers of the current generation and somehow has fitted in with the style of the show better than most. He has a fruity voice which has been compared with that of Derek Nimmo, and an enjoyment of fantasy often with a sado-masochistic air. He enjoys weaving the other panellists into his fantasies. He also has a booming giggle, if you can imagine such a thing. A very welcome panellist whenever he appears. Arguably has the cleverest song ever heard on the show to his credit, he recited this on the subject of "rhyming couplets":
"When I gaze at Stephen Frost,
He flecks his pecs and I am lost!
Look again at Miss Eclair,
By Jove, she's got a lovely pear...
Crumble recipe, even Peter Jones,
There's still some flesh on them old bones.
But when I look at Nicholas Pars-
sons, all I see is a right royal are...
Some examples of the rhyming couplets..." Hard to beat and someone who could clearly be in line to appear even more often.

Who is he:
Among all the stand-up comics, Kit is certainly as quick-witted as any of them but most of his career has been in music and the stage. He worked in the BBC's music department for six years before leaving to write and perform his own musical satire Kit and The Widow which he still performs. He has since written other musicals, both comedy and not, mainly as a lyricist, and wrote a play based on the letters of Tennessee Williams.
Links to transcripts:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43

Thora Hird

JAM Appearances:
Two as a panellist on radio in 1976-1977.
How she did:
Thora surely has the unique record of never challenging anyone else through her two shows, which she explained by saying she was enjoying listening to the others speak, and who could blame her. When she did speak, she had a gentle Northern humour to her that was very enjoyable, and she nagged the others in a very funny way, but someone who doesn't want to play the game can hardly be called back.
Who is she:
Dame Thora was a household name in Britain with a CV as long as your arm as a character actress. She specialised in comedy but had a range of accents and styles and also took dramatic roles. Until her recent death, she was appearing in Last Of The Summer Wine although partially disabled. As an ardent royalist she was sometimes quoted in the tabloids speaking up for the Royals.
Links to transcripts:
1 2

Ian Hislop

JAM Appearances:
Two as a panellist on radio in 1986.
How he did:
Very well, he was immediately hitting the right tone, and was amusing and competitive enough.
Who is he:
Ian has edited the satirical maagzine Private Eye since 1986, and has appeared on the TV news satire show Have I Got News For You since 1990, making people laugh for many years. Regarded by The Guardian as one of the most powerful figures in the British media. Recently voted one of the 50 funniest people in Britain.
Links to transcripts:
1 2

Rufus Hound

JAM Appearances:
Three as a panellist on radio in 2016.
Who is he:
Rufus is a comedian, actor and TV presenter.
How he did:
Mercilessly teased by the others in his debut, Rufus was funny and well spoken, and showed the skills that could have him making further appearances.
Links to transcripts:
His show isn't yet transcribed.

Renee Houston

JAM Appearances:
One as a panellist on radio in 1968.
How she did:
A sharp talker, fluent and funny, she could perhaps have developed into a more regular player of the game had she wanted to. One could imagine here standing up to Kenneth Williams better than many women tried over the first two decades of the show.
Who is she:
An actress and what we used to call a "personality" in the early days of broadcasting in Britain. Renee starred in some of the Carry On movies and was a regular on talk and game shows with her sharp acerbic wit and ability to strongly argue a case. Was well-known in the more wholesome 60s for her strong language which sometimes made producers queasy about letting her speak live.
Links to transcripts:
1

Robin Ince

JAM Appearances:
Three as a panellist on radio in 2008-2015.
How he did:
Wonderfully chirpy and funny, Robin has the skills to return to to the show and compete with the others, both in points and in humour.
Who is he:
Robin Ince is an English stand-up comedian, actor and writer. He is also an impressionist, having performed on The 11 O'Clock Show, for which he also wrote. He reguarly works with Ricky Gervais with whom he appeared on The Office.
Links to transcripts:
1

Charmian Innes

JAM Appearances:
Three as a panellist on radio in 1968.
How she did:
A charming and fluent speaker, Charmian came across as the nicest of people, totally at home with ad libbing away, but perhaps without the edge to make her a must to have back.
Who is she:
A movie and stage actress in the 40s, 50s and 60s, Charmian also did radio work including JAM of course.
Links to transcripts:
1 2

Eddie Izzard

JAM Appearances:
Two as a panellist on radio in 1994.
How he did:
Eddie's bizarre surreal sense of humour seemed to suit the show and he also had great fun with the rules, working out how to win points through challenging himself and generally poking fun at the show. Could surely have done more shows had he wanted to.
Who is he:
A hugely popular comic in Britain with a developing reputation in the United States where he often appears on big comedy shows like David Letterman and recently had a hugely successful Broadway run play in a play called Joe Egg. Izzard though is probably still best known for his stand-up routines which used to feature him in drag as the "first male lesbian". His routine is based on clever observational comedy. In 2003 he was voted one of the 50 funniest people in Britain. Although he still does some stand-up he is more of an actor these days, his credits including The Riches, The Avengers and Ocean's Thirteen.
Links to transcripts:
1 2

David Jacobs

JAM Appearances:
Two as a panellist on radio in 1973.
How he did:
His gentlemanly manners of the old school set him apart and above the usual muck slinging and point scraping that surrounds first time guests.
Who is he:
One of the giants of British broadcasting, David brought up 60 years in radio in 2004. He hosts a weekly music programme on the BBC and is regarded as one of the pioneers among disc jockeys. He is also closely connected with dozens of game shows both on radio and television, including What's My Line and Any Questions.
Links to transcripts:
1 2

Martin Jarvis

JAM Appearances:
Six as a panellist on radio in 1984-1985-2000.
How he did:
A pleasant and amusing speaker, Martin was an effective guest without providing outstanding value.
Who is he:
An actor with long experience on the British stage, Martin must have acted in hundreds of plays over the years. He now does some television work, though mainly in guest roles and is closely associated with audio books for the blind. Had a costarring role in the huge hit movie Titanic.
Links to transcripts:
1 2 3 4 5 6

Joe ?

JAM Appearances:
One as a panellist on Junior Just A Minute in 2015.
Who is he:
A junior contestant on the second series of Junior Just A Minute.
Links to transcripts:
His show isn't yet transcribed.

Brian Johnston

JAM Appearances:
Three as a panellist on radio in 1982-1983.
How he did:
Johnners was Johnners, burbling on merrily and very humorously. He rather amazingly won his first show, but called back the next year had more trouble with a more experienced panel although still being a very good contributor to some very funny shows. Could well have done more shows.
Who is he:
On his first appearance Nicholas suggested Brian needed no introduction to radio listeners and certainly I can't hope to do justice to his remarkable career here. But here goes! Brian was certainly best known as a cricket commentator being a pioneer of television coverage in Britain between 1946 and 1969 when he transferred to radio for 24 years as the key of the radio cricket team, introducing the more informal humorous style that is now adopted for radio cricket commentary around the world. His style was to burble, mixing in bad jokes, puns and pranks with the more serious cricket analysis. Apart from that he was involved in just about every area of British broadcasting, perhaps most notably with Down Your Way, a programme where Brian profiled England's small towns through talking to ordinary and extraordinary inhabitants. Perhaps in a way he can be seen as a pioneer of reality broadcasting as in the 50s he took on dares and broadcast them live, among his feats being to be run over by a train and to have sat inside a living letter box. In his last years he developed a very successful career as a stand-up comic and tragically had a stroke while still as busy as ever, aged 81, and died shortly after that in 1993.
Links to transcripts:
1 2 3

Geraldine Jones

JAM Appearances:
18, including 17 as a panellist on radio in 1968-1969-1970 and one as chairman on radio in 1968.
How she did:
A regular player in the early days Geraldine was a foil for the three big mouths around her. She was pleasant and plucky with a nice voice, and a good wit. She stood up to Kenneth, Clement and Derek, and that was enough. Had a beautiful voice with exquisite diction.
Who is she:
Geraldine was the first woman President of the famous Oxford Union. That made her famous enough to be something of a celebrity in the late 60s. She briefly entered politics after her run on JAM.
Links to transcripts:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15
Links to transcripts as chairman:
1

Peter Jones

JAM Appearances:
332 including 324 as a panellist on radio in 1971-1972-1973-1974-1975-1976-1977-1978-1979-1980
1981-1982-1983-1984-1985-1986-1987-1988-1989-1990-1991-1992-1993-1994-1995-1996-1997-1998-1999-2000, six as a panellist on television in 1999, one on the 25th anniversary special Silver Minutes in 1992, and one on the 40th anniversary special in 2007.

How he did:
Peter is one of the best loved panellists in JAM's history, and fondly remembered by all the fans.
Towards the end of his life, Peter said that despite playing the game for 30 years, he never got to be any good at it. This is a modest statement and anyone who heard Peter will know what he meant. He rarely won a game, and was more inclined than most to the verbal hesitations of "um", "er" and "well". But his fans would disagree when looking at the big picture because there's little doubt that Peter contributed some of the biggest laughs in JAM history.
Although within a few years, Nicholas was declaring that Peter had been in the show from the beginning, and some books say Peter joined in the second season, actually he didn't join the show for four years when he replaced Derek Nimmo who was overseas at the time they were recording. He quickly showed his mettle though and two years later, even after Derek's return, he was appearing more ofteh than anyone else. He was a regular from 1971 until his death in 2000.
Even at the beginning, Peter's style provided a contrast with the Kenneth-Derek-Clement trio that had dominated hitherto. Peter was not competitive and didn't seem keen to win the game at all costs. Instead he poked fun at the game, its rules and in particular himself. Clement Freud once said Peter said the least, but had the funniest line of the evening and certainly Peter's sharp wit enlivened his shows. He became the only person to regularly beat Kenneth on the witty putdown.
Peter almost always began every segment of speaking with the words 'well of course", the sort of thing which becomes a running joke. In his last years, Peter became even more hesitant and Clement famously commented that Peter was being kept on as "an oldie mascot". Certainly he was allowed to hesitate more than anyone else, and his talk included far more ahs and ums than would normally be allowed. But even in his late 70s he was still capable of the witty remark that provided the highlight of a show.
Peter's essential good nature shone through and he would sometimes chide the others for their sexist remarks. The epitome of the tolerant decent Englishman, Peter's many fans still mourn his passing and that gentle wit. If you could invite anyone from JAM to dinner, odds on it would be Peter. Whoever said quiet people don't get noticed has never heard of Peter Jones.

Who is he:
Peter had a long career of enormous variety without becoming a really big star.
Born in Wem in Shropshire, Peter began acting at an early age. He first became nationally known as the radio partner of Peter Ustinov, in the first improvised comedy programme. In the days when radio was King, the show was a big hbit and he would sometimes grumble that he was destined forever to be known as Ustinov's sidekick.
Arguably he was most famous in the mid 60s with a long running sitcom The Rag Trade, in which he played the boss of a clothes manufacturing firm, in continual trouble with his union-led staff led by JAM colleagues Sheila Hancock and Miriam Karlin. In those days when union leaders were often more powerful than Cabinet Ministers, the show touched a nerve. Peter's character was a loveable, irascible and slightly bumbling man. The show was revived briefly in the late 70s.
Throughout the 60s and 70s, Peter was in continual work on the stage and doing a lot of television. He also wrote extensively, both plays and for television. He wrote for a TV sketch series based around Sheila Hancock.
In the early 80s, Peter narrated the cult classic Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy and there are those who rememebr him best for this. He wrote and performed his own solo radio series, J Kingston Platt.
Peter did plenty of other things including films, but will probbaly be best remembered for JAM, a show which used his wit, his fondness for an anecdote and his good nature to full effect.

Links to transcripts:
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Ruth Jones

JAM Appearances:
One as a panellist on Television in 2012.
How he did:
Funny and competitive, Ruth mad a strong debut on her first show, ending ahead of both Paul Merton and Marcus Brigstocke. Surely likely to turn up on the radio version.
Who is she:
Ruth is a Welsh TV actress and writer. She co-starred in and co-wrote Gavin & Stacey, and has appeared in many television comedies and dramas, such as The Street, Hattie and Stella.
Links to transcripts:
1

John Junkin

JAM Appearances:
Eight as a panellist on radio in 1980-1981-1982-1983-1992.
How he did:
Witty and sarcastic, John had a style which saw him able to poke fun at the rules. I found him a bit grating but I know others who found him a bit different and for that reason good fun.
Who is he:
A comedy actor and writer, his writing has had the most reach, writing for comedy superstars including Morecambe and Wise, and Kenny Everett. Still his acting has seen him appear in a raft of TV shows and movies including A Hard Day's Night with the Beatles, without really hitting the heights.
Links to transcripts:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Phill Jupitus

JAM Appearances:
Six including 5 as a panellist on Radio in 2007-2008-2011, and one as a panellist on TV in 2012.
How he did:
Witty and relaxed, Phill fitted in like an old shoe. Surely we will be hearing more of him on the show.
Who is he:
Best known as the breakfast DJ on BBC6 Music, he left that job in 2007 after five years. He's now returned to stand-up comedy. He has been a regular on TV game shows Never Mind The Buzzcocks, and It's Only TV But I Like It, and must have guested on just about every other game show on TV and radio.
Links to transcripts:
1 2 3 4 5 6



Addison-Beaumont    Beresford-Bryson    Buckman-Daly    David-Clement Freud    Emma Freud-Hawks    Jupp-MacAulay    Macdonald-Melly    Merton-Oliver    O'Neill-Richard    Robbins-Slattery    Small-Tyrell    Unwin-Wood



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