Thomas Woodrooffe

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Thomas Woodrooffe (1899–1978) was a British naval officer, broadcaster and writer.

United Kingdom Country in Europe

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world. The Irish Sea separates Great Britain and Ireland. The United Kingdom's 242,500 square kilometres (93,600 sq mi) were home to an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017.

Royal Navy Maritime warfare branch of the United Kingdoms military

The Royal Navy (RN) is the United Kingdom's naval warfare force. Although warships were used by the English kings from the early medieval period, the first major maritime engagements were fought in the Hundred Years' War against the Kingdom of France. The modern Royal Navy traces its origins to the early 16th century; the oldest of the UK's armed services, it is known as the Senior Service.

Writer Person who uses written words to communicate ideas and to produce works of literature

A writer is a person who uses written words in various styles and techniques to communicate their ideas. Writers produce various forms of literary art and creative writing such as novels, short stories, poetry, plays, screenplays, and essays as well as various reports and news articles that may be of interest to the public. Writers' texts are published across a range of media. Skilled writers who are able to use language to express ideas well, often contribute significantly to the cultural content of a society.

In the Royal Navy he rose to the rank of Lieutenant-Commander. After his retirement he became a commentator for BBC Radio. He was one of its main commentators during the 1930s, covering amongst many other events the opening ceremony of the 1936 Summer Olympics and Neville Chamberlain's return from Munich in 1938. He is best remembered though for two gaffes.

BBC Radio division and service of the British Broadcasting Corporation

BBC Radio is an operational business division and service of the British Broadcasting Corporation. The service provides national radio stations covering the majority of musical genres, as well as local radio stations covering local news, affairs and interests. It also oversees online audio content.

1936 Summer Olympics games of the XI Olympiad, celebrated in Berlin in 1936

The 1936 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XI Olympiad, was an international multi-sport event held in 1936 in Berlin, Nazi Germany. Berlin won the bid to host the Games over Barcelona, Spain, on 26 April 1931, at the 29th IOC Session in Barcelona. It marked the second and final time the International Olympic Committee gathered to vote in a city that was bidding to host those Games.

Neville Chamberlain former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

Arthur Neville Chamberlain was a British Conservative statesman who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from May 1937 to May 1940. Chamberlain is best known for his foreign policy of appeasement, and in particular for his signing of the Munich Agreement in 1938, conceding the German-speaking Sudetenland region of Czechoslovakia to Germany. When Adolf Hitler invaded Poland, the UK declared war on Germany on 3 September 1939, and Chamberlain led Britain through the first eight months of the Second World War.

In 1937 he was to describe the Spithead Review from his old ship the battleship HMS Nelson. Apparently he met some of his former colleagues before the broadcast and drank to the extent that his broadcast, still known today by his repeated phrase "the fleet's lit up", was so incoherent he was taken off air after a few minutes and suspended for a week by BBC Director-General John Reith. [1] Woodroofe's comically rambling commentary has regularly been rebroadcast. The phrase "lit up" can also be a euphemism for drunkenness, which may explain Woodrooffe's comment, "At the present moment, the whole fleet is lit up. When I say 'lit up', I mean lit up by fairy lamps.". [2] [3] Parts of Woodrooffe's commentary were used by the British rock band Public Service Broadcasting in their track Lit Up.

Battleship large armored warship with a main battery consisting of heavy caliber guns

A battleship is a large armored warship with a main battery consisting of large caliber guns. During the late 19th and early 20th centuries the battleship was the most powerful type of warship, and a fleet of battleships was considered vital for any nation that desired to maintain command of the sea.

HMS <i>Nelson</i> (28) Nelson-class battleship

HMS Nelson was one of two Nelson-class battleships built for the Royal Navy between the two World Wars. She was named in honour of Horatio Nelson, 1st Viscount Nelson the victor at the Battle of Trafalgar. The Nelsons were unique in British battleship construction, being the only ships to carry a main armament of 16 inch (406mm) guns and the only ones to carry all the main armament forward of the superstructure. These were a result of the limitations of the Washington Naval Treaty. Commissioned in 1927, Nelson served extensively in the Atlantic, Mediterranean and Indian oceans during the Second World War. She was decommissioned soon after the end of the war and scrapped in 1949. She was nicknamed "Nels-ol" from the resemblance in her outline to RN oilers, whose names ended in "-ol".

The Director-General of the British Broadcasting Corporation is chief executive and editor-in-chief of the BBC.

Woodrooffe continued to work for the BBC though and in 1938 he was the main commentator at the FA Cup Final between Preston North End and Huddersfield Town, the first to be televised. After 29 minutes of extra time it was still 0-0 and Woodrooffe declared: "If there's a goal scored now, I'll eat my hat." Seconds later Preston was awarded a penalty from which George Mutch scored. Woodrooffe kept his promise, though Time stated that the "hat" he ate was made of sugar-coated cake. [4] [5]

1938 FA Cup Final

The 1938 FA Cup Final was contested by Preston North End and Huddersfield Town at Wembley Stadium. Preston, losing finalists the previous year, won by a single goal. This was their second win in the competition.

Preston North End F.C. Association football club

Preston North End Football Club is a professional football club in Preston, Lancashire, whose team currently plays in the EFL Championship, the second tier of the English football league system. Originally a cricket club, Preston have been based at Deepdale since 1875. The club first took up football in 1878 as a winter fitness activity and decided to focus on it in May 1880, when the football club was officially founded. Deepdale is now football's oldest ground in terms of continuous use by a major league club.

English football on television has been broadcast since 1938. Since the establishment of the Premier League in 1992, English football has become a very lucrative industry. As of the 2013-14 season, domestic television rights for the 20-team Premier League are worth £1 billion a year. The league generates €2.2 billion per year in domestic and international television rights.

Thomas Woodrooffe also wrote a number of books on naval history, including River of Golden Sand (1936), Best Stories of the Navy (1941) and Vantage at Sea: England's Emergence as An Oceanic Power (1958).

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References

  1. http://uffish.net/archives/000327.html
  2. The Synonym Finder, J. I. Rodale, Laurence Urdang, Nancy LaRoche, Urdang, Published 1978, p565.
  3. Recording and Transcription(1), Transcription(2) Archived 6 July 2014 at Archive.today
  4. ITV Sport
  5. Time Magazine, 23 May 1938