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The Actuary The magazine of the Institute & Faculty of Actuaries

Richard Smith stars as BBC Radio 4 staff writer

The Actuarial Profession’s Napier House-based Research & Information Services administrator Richard Smith has recently been busy writing for the ratings-topping BBC Radio 4 programme The Now Show.

He joined the last series as a staff writer, which required attending star-struck meetings at Broadcasting House writing alongside the likes of Steve Punt and Hugh Dennis. Richard has also contributed aired material to the current Vote Now Show election specials, where submitted material has to be so unswervingly topical that the show is recorded a mere three hours before broadcast.

Richard said: “Writing with the best for the best definitely raises your game, but the ungenerous time limit set to produce gags and short sketches on narrowly defined topics can be stressful; it also requires learning adjustment: rather than receiving laughter after thinking up a funny satirical gag, expect instead: ‘Hmmm... I’m not sure if that’s really Radio 4.’”