- Fifi Lady Macbeth
- Fiona Elizabeth Bruce
- Camden London England
- United Kingdom
- Newsreader Television Presnterproducer
- Jogging Skiing Playing The Piano
- Sexy Intelligent Assertive Ambitious Able To Laugh At Herself
- Surprisingly Low Self-esteem About Her Looks
Fiona Elizabeth Bruce (born 25 April 1964 in Singapore City, Singapore) is a British journalist, newsreader and television presenter. Since joining the BBC in 1989, she has gone on to present many flagship programmes for the corporation including the BBC News at Ten, Crimewatch, Call My Bluff and, most recently, Antiques Roadshow. From 2003 to 2007, she also anchored her own documentary series, Real Story.
Bruce was born in Singapore City, the daughter of a self-made Scotsman who worked his way up from post boy to become Managing Director of a division of Unilever. Her mother Rosemary was adopted. She was first schooled at St. George's British International School in Rome, and then the sixth form of Haberdashers' Aske's Hatcham College in New Cross, London. It was during this later period that she modelled for the stories in the teenage girls' magazine Jackie. Bruce studied French and Italian at Hertford College, Oxford, during which period she was a self-confessed punk, and for one week had blue hair.
After leaving university, Bruce joined a management consultant firm for a year, but found the experience depressingly dull:
“I dreaded the meetings, the tedium, the fact that I was in the wrong job. I was so unhappy. I used to cry in the loos at lunchtime.”
After this, she worked in an advertising agency for a couple of years, before she met the then editor of Panorama Tim Gardam at a wedding, and pestered him until he gave her a job as a researcher at the BBC on the programme in 1989. After becoming assistant assistant producer on Panorama, she made the change to presenting in 1992 as a reporter for Breakfast News. She then moved to BBC South East, appearing as an occasional presenter and reporter on Newsroom South East. During this time she also appeared on some weekend main BBC News bulletins and reported for Newsnight.
In 1999, as part of a major relaunch of the BBC's news output, Bruce was named secondary presenter of the Six O'Clock News bulletin. She presented the programme as cover for main presenter Huw Edwards as well as regularly on Fridays until a presenter reshuffle in January 2003 to coincide with the retirement of Michael Buerk and the move of Peter Sissons to the BBC News channel. Both Edwards and Bruce moved to presenting the BBC News at Ten and have presented the programme on their respective days since. By becoming presenter, she became the first woman to ever present the bulletin from launch in 2000.
Following the murder of Jill Dando, Bruce took over the position of co-presenter on Crimewatch alongside Nick Ross, until both were replaced by Kirsty Young towards the end of 2007. In May 2008 Bruce once more became the Friday presenter for the BBC News at Six, in addition to presenting the BBC News at Ten. On 22 June 2007 it was announced that Bruce was to replace the retiring Michael Aspel as presenter of the Antiques Roadshow in Spring 2008. She appeared in a tongue-in-cheek BBC HD advert in 2008, featuring the show (which is one of the BBC's main programs on its HD service), where she drove a car through a wall, before running towards a falling vase; the car explodes as she jumps to save the vase from crashing.
She has also had two brief stints on BBC Radio 2, both times as a temporary stand-in; firstly in 2005 for Mariella Frostrup on the Green Room program and then in 2008 on The Sunday Supplement slot in between Michael Parkinson and Michael Ball's periods as regular presenter.
Bruce has also been featured in an episode of Top Gear, which sees her sharing a lift with presenter of the show, Jeremy Clarkson and then having to push him out (as he was stuck in his Peel P50). Clarkson goes on to comment "She does have quite a nice bottom... I said that out loud, didn't I?" Bruce returned to Top Gear in the next series, alongside fellow newsreader Kate Silverton, as a Star in a Reasonably-Priced Car. As a riposte for the "nice bottom" comment, she slapped Jeremy's and declared that it "needs a bit of work".
A less serious side of Bruce is also displayed each year on the BBC's Children in Need telethon, in the regular section where newsreaders break out from behind their desks to take part in a song and dance number. Blessed with a better singing voice than most of her colleagues, her turn in the 2007 performance, as Velma Kelly – with a rendition of "All That Jazz" – so impressed the makers of the revival production of Chicago that they invited her to the London performance of the 10th anniversary gala, where she appeared on stage in a parade of Velmas.
Bruce interviewed the entrepreneur, Sir Alan Sugar, for a BBC 2 documentary in January 2009. She said of the experience: "It was a bit like being in front of a hair dryer at very close quarters. He's not backwards in coming forward in his opinions." During the documentary, Bruce rebutted Sir Alan Sugar's view that women should openly disclose their childcare commitments to a potential employer. She said that if men were not required to declare their ability to meet the demands of their job, it wasn't right that women should do so.
Since the comedy programme Dead Ringers transferred to TV from radio, Bruce has been parodied by Jan Ravens, ruthlessly exaggerating her idiosyncratic feline mannerisms through innuendo. For example, during the 2006 European heat wave, when a hosepipe ban was put into effect in parts of the UK, one of the lines was, "I'm Fiona Bruce. There's never a hosepipe ban when I'm in the room" and "I'm Fiona Bruce and I'm sitting on the luckiest chair in Britain". Another one was "I'm Fiona Bruce. I'm the reason Prince William is postponing his marriage."
In her documentary about Sir Alan Sugar, Bruce repeatedly played the part of a 70s to 80s game show hostess displaying electronics consumer goods. This appeared as a parody of the "dolly-bird" role of game show hostesses, playing to a stereotype that contrasted with her apparent indignation at Sugar's view of women and childcare.
Bruce met her husband Nigel Sharrocks when he was director of the advertising agency where she worked. He is currently Managing Director of Aegis Group.They married in July 1994 in Islington. The couple have two children, son Sam (born January 1998) and daughter Mia (born November 2001), and live in North London