Sunday, 5 April 2015

Biographical Brainstorm: Life before 'Conspiracy'

David Vaughn Icke was born into a working class family on 29th April 1952 and subsequently grew up on a council housing estate in Leicester, the 10th largest city of the UK. Leicester is located in an area also known as the British Midlands. David has retained a hint of the typical accent spoken in this region and despite having undoubtedly received BBC speech training, he can often be found slipping back into a typical Midlands' accent when addressing his audiences.

Describing his childhood, Icke often refers to his family as "working class" and "skint".  The relationship between him and his parents appears to have been harmonious and he frequently tells anecdotes from his childhood and upbringing. He describes his early life as uneventful and himself as a mediocre student as well as a loner. Leaving school at the age of fifteen without taking exams after being picked at a football talent selection by Coventry City, he initially planned to pursue a career in professional football. 

His footballing career was negatively impacted when he was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Even though he continued to play following the initial diagnosis, he eventually had to abandon the world of professional football aged 21. He was at the time playing for Hereford United as a goalkeeper. His medical condition had worsened significantly and he  found himself unable to carry on.

His departure from professional football in 1973 prompted David's first career change and a  foray into journalism, which was to last for the ensuing seventeen years. Initially , he worked for a variety of regional papers and radio stations, including the Leicester Advertiser, the Leicester News Agency, BBC Radio Leicester and BRMB radio in Birmingham. Working his way through the ranks, David was to join BBC Midlands Today before moving on to present the sports section of the BBC's national flagship news programme, Newsnight. From 1982 onwards, David became a co-host of Grandstand, the BBC's main national sports programme at the time. 

Having established himself as a household name in national sports reporting, he regularly covered high-profile sporting events such as the national snooker championships or the 1988 summer Olympics in Seoul. Yet, owing to a row over David's public criticism of and refusal to pay the Community Charge (better known as Poll Tax), which was introduced by the Thatcher Government at the time, his contract with the BBC was subsequently terminated in 1990 on the grounds of his non-compliance with the BBC's impartiality charter.

Throughout the latter part of the 1980s, David became increasingly interested in alternative medicine as well as Green politics - a move which constitutes another turning point in his life. Shortly after joining the Green Party in 1988 and in the wake of the party's successful campaign during the 1989 European Elections,  David became one of the party's  national spokespersons and turned to writing his outline for a vision of Green politics, It Doesn't Have To Be Like This: Green Politics Explained, which was published in 1989. Yet, his venture into politics abruptly ended following his infamous interview on the Wogan show in April 1991 and the subsequent publication of his third book, The Truth Vibrations, in May 1991.

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