BBC Radio Leeds host of 40 years Joe Maiden has died after a long battle with prostate cancer.
Joe was BBC Radio Leeds’ gardening expert for over forty years and hosted Sunday mornings with Tim Crowther. On the latest show, Tim was presenting with a stand-in gardening expert and mentioned that Joe wasn’t very well.
Tim shared the news of Joe’s passing online today and the station has been paying tribute on-air.
“It goes without saying, I am absolutely devastated that we should lose Joe – he’s been a very special part of my life and I know that he was deeply loved and respected by all our listeners,” Tim wrote on Facebook. “He and I have presented a weekly gardening programme for more than 22 years which, for any broadcasting institution, is almost unheard of. Its longevity is a measure of just how brilliant a horticulturalist and broadcaster he was. His knowledge, gentle humour and ability to talk to people and make them feel valued and included was simply unique.
“Joe will be deeply missed by me, by my production team, by all his colleagues at BBC Radio Leeds and by our listeners – he has left a hole in all our hearts which is impossible to fill.”
A book of condolence will be opened at the BBC in Leeds on Monday for listeners to pay tribute. His last radio show was on September 6th and is still available to listen to on the BBC iPlayer. His last appearance on the station was just a week ago, after station engineers installed broadcasting equipment in his own so he could contribute. Hear more about his last broadcast in the audio below.
Heartbreaking news about Joe Maiden. Never failed to amaze me with his knowledge & humour. Listening to him was like a warm blanket & a brew
— Johnathan I'Anson (@johnnyianson) September 17, 2015
— ITV News Calendar (@itvcalendar) September 17, 2015
Very sad news about the passing of @BBCLeeds Joe Maiden. A lovely bloke to work with.
— Graham Liver (@GrahamLiver) September 17, 2015
So sad to read about the death of @BBCLeeds presenter Joe Maiden… 40 years on the air. A true Yorkshire radio legend.
— Jordan Hemingway (@jordanhemingway) September 17, 2015
Very sad to hear Joe Maiden has passed away. With Tim Crowther a dynamic duo in radio: warm,funny & never took it too seriously
— Daragh Corcoran (@DaraghCorcoran) September 17, 2015
— Steve le Fevre (@steve_lefevre) September 17, 2015
RIP Joe Maiden, a lovely, lovely man. pic.twitter.com/maLA2CaQdL
— Wes Butters (@wesbutters) September 17, 2015
— BBC Radio Leeds (@BBCLeeds) September 17, 2015