On Christmas shopping... DAB digital radio for Surrey... and the future of cycling

In the Cannon household in Woking, the Christmas lists begin long and early

In the Cannon household in Woking, the Christmas lists begin long and early - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

In a brand new series, BBC Surrey Breakfast Show host James Cannon takes us behind the scenes of his busy life – at the station’s Guildford studios, out and about in our county and in his hometown of Woking

So Christmas is almost here. There is much excitement at BBC Surrey as we’ve been given an early gift with the switch-on of a new DAB digital radio transmitter for Surrey, which goes live this month. This is great news as, interestingly, Surrey has the highest ownership of digital radios in the UK apparently. I’ll have more details next month as to how exactly you can find us, so watch this space...

So what’s on your pressie list? In our house, the lists are long and begin early. For the sake of avoiding an argument, we end up with an Argos catalogue for each of my three sons and then the dreaming begins.

How life repeats itself; as a child I used to wish my dad would spend more on petrol so he could earn enough Green Shield Stamps to get the above ground swimming pool. The fact we had no garden to speak of never seemed to cross my mind!

Shopping online has been part of our Christmas experience for a couple of years. In fact, a few years ago, my youngest, then aged five, reeled off our postcode. “How do you know that?” I questioned, and he responded: “So I can check if the toys I want are ready for click and collect!”


‘Cycling is the new golf…’ It’s a statement that has stuck with me this year. It came from the BBC’s golf correspondent Iain Carter during a chat at this summer’s PGA championships at Wentworth. We were talking about how many men of a certain age have discovered a new love on two wheels.

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I recently hosted a debate on the future of cycling on BBC Surrey. It was part of the Surrey County Council consultation and revealed the diversity of opinions that cycling creates. The Olympic legacy has certainly left its mark on our county’s roads. Big events like the Tour of Britain and the Ride Surrey London 100 put Surrey on a national and even global map. However, many residents and businesses on the routes complain of being trapped in their homes or losing business.

During the debate, we heard the concerns of cyclists, horse riders, ramblers, and residents all looking for a way that Surrey and cycling can rub along together.

It’s not just the big events but the number of weekend hobby riders that many people have noticed. One Sunday morning, I drove from Box Hill back to my home in Woking and thought I’d count how many cyclists I passed. By half way home, I gave up at 216!

Cycling is something that we will be featuring much more in the New Year on my Breakfast Show. I’d love to hear what you think.


I’ll leave you with my call of the month, which came during a discussion on people allowing pets in the bedroom. This from David of Haslemere: “Well, I’ve got a large German Shepherd and I don’t want him in my bed…” “Yes, but what about your dog?’ I asked.




You can catch James Cannon on the BBC Surrey Breakfast Show every weekday between 6am and 9am on 104-104.6 FM.