George Dougall

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George Dougall (1947-2008) was a UK-based Maltese actor and broadcaster. He was the eldest son of Maltese theatre-maker John Dougall.

Dougall was born in Sliema in 1947. He emigrated to England aiming to pursue a career in drama and broadcasting in November 1947. George studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and after graduation succeeded to thread the boards interpreting several roles in England. He also did some stage design for some English playhouses.

But his main ambition was to work for the British Broadcasting Corporation. His dream was fulfilled in 1956 when, after successfully finishing a course at BBC, he commenced broadcasting on the Corporation’s world radio service a daily five-minuter in Maltese featuring news from London of particular interest to Maltese radio listeners. Punctually every evening at 6.55pm local time, Ġorġ Dougall went on air with his Din hija Londra from BBC in London to Maltese homes via Rediffusion; the programme kept going for many years and was only wound up in 1982 when the Rediffusion Group of Companies terminated their broadcasting service in Malta.

Some important coverages included Malta’s declaration of Independence in 1964, the 1966 edition of the world cup tournament that was staged in England, the death of Sir Winston Churchill in 1965, the British elections of 1970 and 1974 when Edward Heath and Harold Wilson were elected prime ministers respectively.

The 'golden age' of Din Hija Londra was the excellent and comprehensive coverage Ġorġ Dougall provided in 1972 during the tough negotiations between the Maltese and the British governments related to the end of the colonial era in Malta. Dougall's London reports about the development of the high level talks between Maltese Prime Minister Dom Mintoff and British Segretary of State Lord Carrington were first hand renditions of one of the most colourful and fateful periods of Maltese history.

In 1999, George Dougall was awarded Ġieħ ir-Repubblika for his service to Malta.

He died on 3 October 2008 at the age of 61.

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