The son of a farmer, Dick Joice was born in Great Ryburgh near Fakenham, Norfolk in 1921. He took over his father’s tenancy on the Townsend Estate in 1940 and it was a chance conversation with his landlord, The Marquess Townsend, in 1958 that was to launch his new career in television. Lord Townsend, chairman of the new Anglia Television, recognised that programmes for the farming community would be a vital part of the new service and asked Dick to help plan them.
From 1959 Dick Joice presented Anglia’s weekly Farming Diary as well as the nightly news programme About Anglia. In 1965 he was appointed head of local programmes and became a director of the company.
As he revealed in his autobiography, Full Circle, Dick Joice had always collected things: ‘I was born with a naturally acquisitive and inquisitive nature, always wanting to find out how things worked and where they came from.’ This enthusiasm led to the half-hourly Bygones programmes that ran from 1967 for about twenty years. Most items on the programme were allotted 7-10 minutes, but occasionally a subject came along that could be made as a ‘special’ for thirty minutes or more. The Harvest was the programme that he remembered with particular affection.
Dick Joice’s own collection of bygones was enormous. In the late 1970s this was to find a permanent exhibition site at Holkham Hall, Norfolk.
Dick Joice died in 1999.
[information: Farmers Guide magazine]