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Julie Reinger Interview

Lifestyle | Interview

Julie Reinger putting Peterborough on the map and inset 'our Bob' giving it a go!

Have you ever wondered what it takes to be a television weather presenter?

Peterborough Net went behind the scenes with BBC Look East’s Julie Reinger to find out. Julie has presented the weather for Look East for six years.

Known affectionately as Jules to her viewers, she revealed that a lot of hard work goes into the apparent glamorous role of a weather presenter.

The naturally bubbly presenter does the weekdays evening show with Susie Fowler-Watt and Stewart White.

Jules said: “Susie and Stewart are my Look East family. I’m really fortunate to work with such great people.”

She spends the morning preparing the weather forecast graphics on her computer. She said: “I get sent basic charts and scripts from WeatherQuest and I have a very long chat with them to see what the weather story is. The charts allow me to get the story in my head. I’m not like the news presenters I don’t have autocue.

“I usually have around two to two and a quarter minutes to fill in. That can change depending on what’s happening in the programme. I have the unattractive nickname of the ‘Look East buffer’. It’s my job to fill whatever space is left in the programme. If I had autocue that would be impossible.”

Jules explained how place names are selected for the maps: "They are put on by viewers’ request. I try and do a mixture of requests and major places for a sense of geography.”

Always busy, she responds to viewers’ questions or dashes off to outside broadcasts in the afternoon. She has always worked hard, since doing 15-hour days working at BBC Radio Nottingham, while studying for a degree in Broadcast Journalism.

She then moved onto Midlands today as a picture editor, before having her big break presenting the weather. A video of her found its way to Look East where she has been ever since.

Jules said: “My feeling is that if you present the forecast which is clear and understandable, people go away knowing what you are talking about. The thing I’m always stressing to people is forecasting isn’t an exact science. I try and be honest in my approach.”

She realises the importance of her forecasts. She said: “For people such as farmers, weather very much affects their livelihood. You can see why they are so weather obsessed.”

Jules has made the occasional gaff. She confessed: “I’ve been on Auntie’s Bloomers twice already. I’m not sure that ‘s something you ought to admit to.”

Being a television personality, she virtually never switches off from the role. She said: “I’m always being asked to open events such as fetes. People will stop me in the street. They like to know where I buy a jacket from or where I have my hair cut. Most of the time it’s ‘Hi Jules - how you doing?’ which is really nice.

“It comes with job, its part of the territory. Sometimes you don’t feel like being happy, but you have to be professional and get on with it.”

She does a lot of charity work including for Merchants of India and is about to do some filming for Children in Need.

Jules doesn’t even have the luxury of being pampered in the dressing room. She said: “I have to do my own makeup these days. I have to rush and slap on some lipstick and face powder before the show.”

So what’s next for Jules? She said: “Women generally don’t last as long as men in television, unless they are a big name. If something like a holiday, hospital or gardening programme came along I would be interested. I’m very lucky that I really love my job. It’s a great programme and I can live in the countryside with out having to commute for hours.”

October 2004




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