I was born and raised in a small town in North Yorkshire called Northallerton and have one brother, Ben, who’s two years older than me. During my school years I spent most of my free time writing for the school newspaper and performing in school plays and local theatre.
At the age of 18 I left home and went to University in Sheffield where I studied English Language and Literature, then onto Leeds to complete a post graduate in Bi-media Journalism.
During that year I applied for a traineeship with ITV and was over the moon when I got one of 12 places across the country. I started with ITV in the Westcountry where I learned all the tricks of the trade in the most beautiful environment, often filming out at sea!
I was offered my first journalism job as a reporter at ITV Central in 2008 and then began to do freelance work for ITV national news during weekends and busy periods. I began my current role as North of England Correspondent for Daybreak in March 2012.
Journalism has always been my dream job and I love the real mixture of stories I get to cover at Daybreak. I feel privileged to meet fascinating and incredible people on a regular basis and ask them the questions everyone else wants to ask.
Luckily, I also like driving as I travel thousands of miles each month! As long as I have some good music and the headlines on the radio I’m happy.
Outside of work I have a real passion for the sea and will drag friends and family there at every available opportunity. I discovered recently that because I’m short and have a small centre of gravity I can outdo most on a surfboard too!
I have a bizarre fascination with castles and am making my way around the turrets of the country, they’re great destinations to take the dog for a walk!
One of my most annoying habits is that I take photos of everything. I blame the job for that, well you never know when it might become news worthy!
What do you most enjoy about working at Daybreak? The thing I enjoy most about working at Daybreak is meeting all the different people and that completely bizarre situation where me and a crew of burly men wade into their house, drink their tea, cause chaos in their living room and then leave feeling like we've been friends for years! I also really enjoy hearing the stories that make our guests individual and interesting.
Who would you most like to meet/ interview that you haven’t already?
I’d like to meet and interview Barack Obama. I studied African-American literature as part of my degree and seeing him get elected felt like such a key moment in History. It would have been great to have been there and to be the first one to ask him for his reaction. On a different level, Obama seems to have such a great family unit, I’d love to get him to open up about his personal life and find out what their real habits are behind the scenes!
Who is the most memorable celebrity/personality you have ever met and why?
I honestly don’t think any of the most memorable people I have met have been real 'celebrities'. The ones who stick in my mind are the everyday people who achieve something remarkable, often without even realising it. For example, I did a number of reports on a little boy with a brain tumour who raised more than half a million pounds for charity simply by making and selling bracelets. Harry Moseley always put others before himself and his family have continued to raise money in his honour even after his death.
My most memorable interviews are also often those with really quirky personalities and stories to tell, like the man who can distinguish any vacuum cleaner from the noise it makes alone or the couple almost forced to move because they wouldn’t cover up their naked gnomes!
If you weren't a journalist what would you be doing as a job? This is what I’ve always wanted to do so I’m really lucky in that respect. If I couldn’t be a journalist I think it would be fun to work for a TV advertising company. Me and my dad used to sit for hours coming up with ridiculous puns, clichés and jingles, outdoing one another, so it would put what I thought would always be a wasted talent to good use! I also think teaching in a tough secondary school would be a very rewarding job. Finding ways to make young people believe in their futures again.
Are you a good morning person? I never used to be a great morning person but Daybreak has changed that, you have to be at your peak before many people have even left their beds! I now relish that feeling of driving in the dark and spotting other cars or the odd light on, you feel like shouting 'morning!' to them dog walker style! I also love popping back to bed after lives for my second sleep and knowing that everyone else is rushing to work.
Who would you chose to play you in a film version of you life? It would have to be Claire Forlani because I've been told by a couple of people that I look like her so I'm taking it! She was the lead in Meet Joe Black which is also one of my favourite films, and she may be able to bring Brad Pitt on board to play my other half!
Is there a fact about yourself that we would be surprised to learn? While I was at University I used to spend the summer months working as a singer at a caravan park. It also meant I had to dress up as an elephant called Anxious during the daytime shows!
What is your routine for working each day? I wake up around 3:20am, usually in a hotel close to wherever my live location is. I insist on washing, drying and straightening my hair every morning even though it means an early start! I do my make up while checking through any facts or background I need then head to wherever the live is. After the programme at around 9:00am I go back to the hotel and have a full English breakfast before another couple of hours sleep!
I'll then get up between 12 and 1pm and phone the newsdesk to see where my next shoot is, jump into my car, which is my second home, and head to whichever part of the country is next on the agenda! That’s a rough idea but the main thing I love about this job is that everyday is so different, you never know where you'll be or who you’ll meet.