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Showbiz BBC presenter & Keith Chegwin’s sister dies following ‘short illness’, 66, but cause of death unknown Theviraltime

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Showbiz BBC presenter & Keith Chegwin’s sister dies following ‘short illness’, 66, but cause of death unknown Theviraltime


LEGENDARY BBC Radio presenter and former Top of the Pops host Janice Long passed away on Christmas day at the age of 66 following a short illness.

Agent, Nigel Forsyth, confirmed the sad news in a statement, detailing she had suffered from a “short illness” before she passed away surrounded by family.

The radio star’s exact cause of death is still unknown.

Janice, the sister of Keith Chegwin, married Paul Berry in 2017, but had been together for many years and had two children, Blue, 25 and Fred, 33.

Her husband said: “I’ve lost the love of my life and I’m going to spend the rest of it half a person. She had my back from the day we met, you couldn’t possibly ask for more love and loyalty from a wife.”

Read our Janice Long live blog for the latest news and updates…

  • Carol Vorderman’s tribute to Janice

    TV presenter Carol Vorderman wrote on Twitter: “Rest In Music lovely vibrant trailblazer Janice Long. Janice is a huge star in our @BBCRadioWales tight knit family.

    “As a woman in the industry, I truly admired her as the first woman ever to have a daily show on Radio One @BBCR1. We’re in a state of disbelief to be honest.”

  • Adele Roberts thanks Janice

    BBC radio DJ Adele Roberts was among the figures from the world of music and broadcasting to share a tribute.

    Roberts hailed Long for pathing the way for female presenters like herself, saying: “RIP Janice Long.

    “Thank you for everything you did to inspire others and open doors for other women and radio presenters to prosper.”

  • Janice’s husband writes touching tribute

    Warm tributes have been paid to the radio DJ and regular Top of the Pops presenter Janice Long, who at the age of 66.

    Her husband, Paul Berry, said: “I’ve lost the love of my life and I’m going to spend the rest of it half a person.

    “She had my back from the day we met, you couldn’t possibly ask for more love and loyalty from a wife.”

  • Patron for performing arts

    During her career, Janice was a judge for the Mercury Music Prize.

    She was also a patron of the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, founded by Sir Paul McCartney.

    Janice Long was awarded a BASCA Gold badge of merit for her outstanding contribution to music and received an honorary doctorate from Edge Hill University in 2018.

  • Janice was the face of Greatest Hits Radio since 2017

    Since 2017, she had hosted the evening show on BBC Radio Wales and she also presented on Greatest Hits Radio for a Saturday afternoon slot.

    She was also an early supporter of future stars such as The Smiths, Frankie Goes To Hollywood, Primal Scream, Adele, Amy Macdonald and Winehouse.

    Janice Long was awarded a Basca gold badge of merit for her outstanding contribution to music by The Ivors Academy.

  • ‘She told me never to settle for anything less’

    Janice’s son Fred said: “She wasn’t only a mum to me but a whole bunch of my friends that she took in and cared for and I’ll never forget everything she has done for me.

    “She inspired me to be what I want and told me never to settle for anything less.”

  • Janice appeared in a lot of TV shows

    The Liverpool-born presenter was best known for her roles across BBC Radio although initially trained as a flight attendant.

    Janice also appeared on Countdown, the X Factor and The Weakest Link – as well as providing the voiceover for BBC Three’s Desperate Midwives.

  • Clint Boon’s tribute to Janice Long

    English musician, DJ and radio presenter Clint Boon has described Janice Long as one of the ‘most beautiful people in the industry’.

    Taking to his Twitter to write a tribute, he also said that: “Being in her company was always an absolute privilege and honour”.

  • Tim Burgess praises Janice Long

    Peter Hook of Joy Division and New Order and The Charlatans frontman Tim Burgess also shared tributes.

    Hook said she was “always a great friend and a great supporter of our music” and added: “She was a lovely lady and a pleasure to be around. RIP.”

    Burgess, from The Charlatans, praised Long for her support of fledgling bands.

    He said on Twitter: “Janice Long was a supporter and mentor for so many bands.

    “To hear our records on her show was always the biggest thrill – her enthusiasm and love shone Theviraltime. One of a kind. Safe travels, we’ll miss ya.”

  • Janice’s husband writes touching tribute

    Warm tributes have been paid to the radio DJ and regular Top of the Pops presenter Janice Long, who at the age of 66.

    Her husband, Paul Berry, said: “I’ve lost the love of my life and I’m going to spend the rest of it half a person.

    “She had my back from the day we met, you couldn’t possibly ask for more love and loyalty from a wife.”

  • Statement from Janice’s agent Nick

    Ina statement, Janice Long’s agent Nigel Forsyth said: “Janice was a wonderful, warm human being and exceptional broadcaster.

    “She told a brilliant story and always made you roar with laughter with her sharp wit. She will leave behind her husband Paul and two children, who she thought the world of.

    “Janice loved the BBC and started her career as a station assistant at BBC Radio Merseyside in 1979, to complete it with the magnificent people at BBC Radio Wales.

    “Janice wanted it known she was so thankful to the NHS and all who looked after her there.”

  • Agent’s statement

    Janice’s agent Nigel Forsyth said in a statement: “Janice was a wonderful, warm human being and exceptional broadcaster.

    “She told a brilliant story and always made you roar with laughter with her sharp wit. She will leave behind her husband Paul and two children, who she thought the world of.

    “Janice loved the BBC and started her career as a station assistant at BBC Radio Merseyside in 1979, to complete it with the magnificent people at BBC Radio Wales.

    “Janice wanted it known she was so thankful to the NHS and all who looked after her there.”

  • When did they get married? (Continued…)

    Paul and Janice first got together in 1987, ten years after she married her first husband, Trevor Long – from whom she took her professional name.

    Janice and Trevor divorced in 1982.

    Despite being in a relationship that spanned three decades, Janice and Paul didn’t decide to make it legal until 2017 when they finally tied the knot.

    The pair remained together until her death.

  • Who was Janice Long’s husband Paul Berry?

    Liverpool born presenter Janice Long died at home on Christmas Day 2021, surrounded by her family – including her long-time partner Paul.

    Her death came just four years after her brother and fellow entertainer Kevin Chegwin passed away.

    After Janice’s death, her husband Paul said: “I’ve lost the love of my life and I’m going to spend the rest of it half a person. She had my back from the day we met, you couldn’t possibly ask for more love and loyalty from a wife.”

    Not much is known about Paul outside of his relationship with Janice, as he kept a low profile.

  • Spokesperson for Greatest Hits Radio ‘saddened’

    A spokesperson for Greatest Hits Radio, where Janice worked, said: “We’re incredibly saddened to hear of the passing of Janice Long.

    “Throughout her illustrious career, Janice played a significant role and contribution to broadcasting, most recently as an integral part of the Greatest Hits Radio line-up.

    “She was one-of-a-kind and will be greatly missed by all of us and her treasured listeners. Our deepest condolences are with her family and loved ones at this time.”

  • Janice was one of the ‘most beautiful people in the industry’

     English musician, DJ and radio presenter Clint Boon has described Janice Long as one of the ‘most beautiful people in the industry’.

    Taking to his Twitter to write a tribute, he also said that: “Being in her company was always an absolute privilege and honour”.

  • Patron for performing arts

    During her career, Janice was a judge for the Mercury Music Prize.

    She was also a patron of the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, founded by Sir Paul McCartney.

    Janice Long was awarded a BASCA Gold badge of merit for her outstanding contribution to music and received an honorary doctorate from Edge Hill University in 2018.

  • A main presenter of the Live Aid charity concert

    Janice Long presented Top of the Pops for five years and the first woman to do this.

    She even had a late-night slot on Radio 2.

    Alongside this, she was also one of the main presenters of the Live Aid charity concert in 1985.

  • The face of Greatest Hits Radio

    Since 2017, she had hosted the evening show on BBC Radio Wales and she also presented on Greatest Hits Radio for a Saturday afternoon slot.

    She was also an early supporter of future stars such as The Smiths, Frankie Goes To Hollywood, Primal Scream, Adele, Amy Macdonald and Winehouse.

    Janice Long was awarded a Basca gold badge of merit for her outstanding contribution to music by The Ivors Academy.

  • Adele Roberts thanks Janice

    BBC radio DJ Adele Roberts was among the figures from the world of music and broadcasting to share a tribute.

    Roberts hailed Long for pathing the way for female presenters like herself, saying: “RIP Janice Long.

    “Thank you for everything you did to inspire others and open doors for other women and radio presenters to prosper.”

  • Janice’s short illness

    The exact cause of Janice’s death is currently unknown, but those close to her confirmed her passing followed a “short illness”.

    Her death was said to have been sudden and came as a particular shock, despite her condition appeared to be improving.

  • Her last post

    Janice posted a final message on social media shortly after being hospitalised as she battled pneumonia.

    She told her followers: “Good Morning world from my hospital bed in Liverpool.”

  • ‘Janice Long was a true maverick’

    This is a comment piece by Dylan Jones, Former editor of GQ

    When my friend, the celebrated DJ Janice Long, died earlier this week at the age of 66 after a short illness, the social media platform was overwhelmed by people keen to express their love for her.

    We really loved Janice Long.

    Everyone from pop legend Paul Weller, New Order’s Peter Hook and the Charlatans’ Tim Burgess to DJs Greg James, Ken Bruce and Jeremy Vine took to Instagram to express their sadness and their respect for Janice.

    Because they knew what many of us knew: That she was a genuine maverick.

    Read the comment piece in full here.

  • Tributes from the music world

    Tributes have continued to pour in from fans and the music industry around the world.

    Comedian Les Dennis said he would “miss our chats”, adding that Miss Long was a “shining and innovative talent”.

    Merseyside band The Coral said: “She was great to us and like the best broadcasters, talking to her was always easy, like catching up with a friend. RIP Janice.”

  • Janice passed away over the Xmas weekend

    Former Top of The Pops host and BBC Radio presenter Janice Long passed away on Christmas day at the age of 66 following a short illness.

    Agent, Nigel Forsyth, confirmed the sad news in a statement, detailing she had suffered from a “short illness” before she passed away surrounded by family.

    Tributes have continued to pour in from fans and the music industry around the world.





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