After being given the chance to help out in the Red Rose Radio newsroom every weekend I made the most of the opportunities to develop my skills. I developed my news writing techniques, worked on my editing and importantly used the news studio in between bulletins.
After the main bulletin had been read on the hour, I would go into the studio and practice read the same scripts. I learnt how to use my voice, when to stress certain words, and when to lower and raise the intonation. The newsreader of the day would then give me feedback and offer advice on how I could improve. It was during this process I lost my Preston accent. I had been quite broad before, and there was hardly any difference when I said "hair" "her" and "their" !! - I still have a slight hint of Preston twang... keeping true to my roots.
At 1130 on Saturday mornings there would be a news bulletin on Rock FM and a sports bulletin on Red Rose Gold. The sports editor normally came into read his update ahead of the afternoons football commentary. At 1125 he called to say his car had broken down and couldn't make it in. The newsreader couldn't present the bulletin as he had his own update on the FM station....
So I was given a pile of tapes and scripts in no particular order and was pushed into the studio. I tripped on the heavy sound proof door and dropped everything on the floor. I hurriedly picked things up, the sports jingle played and the presenter said "Now at the Red Rose Sports desk..... Steve Saul" - I breathlessly said "Good Morning...." My first live bulletin!