Two Radio Virgins Meet Virgin Radio

Good Heavens, it's Chris Evans!

Woman and man pose with D.J. Chris Evans who holds a poo encapsulated in a resin sphere, a present to him from the Poo Museum

It’s stupid o’clock on the Morning of May 28th 2019. The birds are chirping, the sun is beaming. There’s a gentle tap, tap, tap at my front door. I grab my bag and a copy of Pooems, (my little book of animal poo poetry,) and I fling wide the door to see a smiley director Daniel stood on the top step.

This dawn apparition comes as no surprise to me as both Daniel and I have been gearing ourselves up for this very morning, ever since we received an email from Virgin Radio inviting us onto the Chris Evans breakfast show a few weeks prior.

We were told that DJ and television presenter Chris Evans was coming to the Isle of Wight on May 28th with his entire crew to host a very special breakfast show live from The Hut, (the splendid beach restaurant at Colwell Bay) and with him he’d be bringing the winners of the BBC Children in Need ‘Dine and Disco’ auction. We learned that an Amanda-style brunch was going to be served at The Hut, (to which we were also invited) and everyone present would be treated to a rousing performance from singer Tom Odell no less!

The reason as to why TNPM was being invited to such a prestigious event was revealed further along in the email. It was our poos they wanted! Not as part of the delicious brunch menu I hasten to add, heaven forbid! No, they wanted us to take part in the festivities by talking about the museum and sharing some of our beautiful stellar-like poo spheres with the invited (and extremely generous) audience.

Two foam-filled metal hard cases containing clear resin poo spheres

And so, as Daniel and I stood upon my doorstep poised for our radio adventure, our nerves began to kick in, making the knocking of our knees as audible as the blackbird singing on my rooftop.

With our cases of sparkling poo gems carefully packed and safely stowed in the back of Daniel’s van, we headed off into the sunrise, bound for the far western end of the Island, and to our Virgin Radio debut.

A group of clear resin poo spheres on a table

Although the sun was shining brightly as we journeyed west, there was a very definite stiff breeze blowing making our decision not arrive at our beach front destination aboard the poo museum’s very own small ship, the Pooh E2, a really sensible one! Whilst we’ve had a fair amount of success rowing up and down the Medina River without our lavatorial vessel tipping up and throwing us into the murky drink, we do know that our unconventional craft does not handle waves terribly well!

So we decided in order to save either the staff at The Hut from having to fish us out of the bay at Colwell, or worse, Chris Evans trying to interview us as we thrashed about in the bay’s lapping waves, we would leave our splendid floating toilet in dry dock on the banks of the river Medina.

Man and woman sitting on toilets on a low raft so that the toilets appear to be floating

However, when the North, South, East, or West wind doth blow, making a floating toilet a no go, well, then its time to bring out the big guns!

Behold the marvellous mechanical Poo Trike!

Woman and man ride a giant wooden tricycle down a shopping street

This wondrous contraption built by TNPM director Daniel long before he became TNPM director Daniel, is now synonymous with the museum, and it has to be said it attracts as much attention as the poo specimens it harbours in its panniers. This fine and equally unique mode of transport was already waiting for us at Colwell Bay on the morning of May 28th, having spent the night parked on the driveway of an extremely kind and helpful Colwell Bay resident. Our plan was to discard Daniel’s van once we’d arrived at the bay, load up the parked Poo Trike with poos, clamber aboard its wooden structure and pedal the remaining short distance to The Hut on the esplanade.

Our cunning plan to arrive in style went like clockwork. The fact that the trike’s umbrella kept blowing inside out and round the wrong way every few minutes didn’t matter a jot, in fact it made the two cheery security guards who greeted us on the esplanade laugh out loud as they waved us through the barrier to where the Chris Evans breakfast show was already in full swing.

Woman sits in riding seat of a giant wooden tricycle topped by an umbrella blown inside-out

Our nerves at appearing on the radio began to dissolve once we’d arrived at The Hut and we were greeted by the friendly Virgin Radio production team. However, our jitters were quick to return in force when we saw Mr Evans interviewing Dame Ellen MacArthur as she spoke so eloquently about the Ellen MacArthur Trust. This brilliant charity which was established in 2003 helps young people recovering from cancer treatments to rebuild their lives and their confidence through sailing.

How the heck could we follow Dame Ellen and her brilliant work with a chat about poo?

We needn’t have worried! After a record was beamed down the myriad of wires and cables dotted around the restaurant from the Virgin studios in London, two microphones were shoved under mine and Dan’s noses just in time to hear Chris bellow, “The poo museum guys are here everyone!” There was a huge round of applause, accompanied by a good deal of cheering, then sadly, what followed is a complete blur to Dan and myself. I do recall a lot of laughter, far too many poo puns, a bit of pooetry and the smell of garlic cooking from the Garlic Farm people who were waiting in the wings to follow us.

And so all that remains to say about our radio adventure, is a massive heartfelt thank you to everyone at Virgin Radio for making us so welcome and for making our radio experience one we shall never forget. Thank you to the staff at The Hut for a wonderful brunch and for their superb hospitality. Finally, congratulations to the auction winning guests for raising a huge amount of money for the Children in Need charity.

A truly grand day all round!

Nicola Winsland