Keep your hair on, Nick!

A look at the life of the BBC political editor
Click to follow
The Independent Online

1963 Nick Robinson is born in Macclesfield. As a baby, prone to tantrums and seems especially angry if distracted when being filmed for winsome home videos. An aunt who inadvertently walks into shot as he gurgles at the camera is banned from family gatherings.

1971 Becomes interested in politics. From now on, family meals marked by his lengthy analyses of the Heath government. His mother once makes the mistake of interrupting him to ask if he wants more Angel Delight. She never does so again.

1979 At Cheadle Hulme School, he develops the habit, at the conclusion of lessons, of going to the front of the class and giving his assessment of the teacher's performance and what the boys will now be thinking.

1984 At Oxford, he does not join the Bullingdon Club, but instead founds a new one. It is called the Robinson Club, its uniform consisting of a slightly too-tight dark suit, sober tie and a pair of expensive spectacles.

1986 Elected chairman of the Young Conservatives. His year of office goes well until, at the annual ball, he fails to win the raffle, the previous chairman's sister refuses him a dance, and he resigns.

1990 Joins BBC, works on Crimewatch, and makes first appearance in front of the camera playing an armed robber in a reconstruction of a building society raid. The footage is never shown as he insists on removing his stockinged mask, putting on his glasses and shouting penetrating questions at his fellow "robbers".

2003 His experiment with comb-over ends on-air, during his coverage of Hurricane Isabel.

2008 Launches Pomposity Awareness Week.

21 Oct 2010 Peace campaigner stands behind Robinson and waves placard as the BBC political editor addresses the nation. After the camera stops rolling, Robinson seizes the placard, breaks it and gives the man a piece of his mind. Robinson is forced to apologise, but BBC current affairs executives get an idea.

23 Oct 2010 BBC plan new reality show – Rile Robinson! – in which members of the public see if they can provoke the famously touchy political editor to actual violence. A new national sport is born.