Bill Oddie is best known for the wacky humour of the Goodies, and the irrepressible enthusiasm of his nature programmes, off screen there has been a darker side. Bill has suffered from bouts of depression which have more than once taken him to the brink. Now he is back in control and wiser about the causes and the cure.
Here he describes the childhood blighted by the absence of his mother who had been committed to a mental asylum when he was small. It was a lonely and difficult start to life, but there were to be happier times. Touring with the Cambridge Footlights in the l960s saw him alongside the greatest comic talents of his generation – John Cleese and of course fellow Goodies Tim Brooke-Taylor and Graeme Garden. Soon the Goodies were to become on of the biggest comedy hits of the 70s – bringing a new brand of surreal humour to our screens.
Now as Britain’s favourite birdwatcher Bill has turned his private passion into his most public role and presented more than 20 nature programmes for the BBC. He has also become a fervent and outspoken campaigner for the environment.
It has been an extraordinary and far from straightforward journey. Bill Oddie takes us along with him in a memoir which is as witty, candid, curious and unconventional as the man himself. (pb)