Alex Hill, aged 66, is a meteorology and aviation forecasting expert and was formerly the Met Office chief Advisor for Scotland and Northern Ireland:
1. Tell us 4 important facts about yourself (your career, what you do now etc).
I was a meteorologist for 40 years, providing forecasts for everything from bananas to oil rigs. I was the first ever ITV national weather broadcaster, Head of London Weather Centre, and the first weather and climate change advisor to the Scottish Government.
2. What is your favourite age that you’ve been so far in life, and why?
This is really difficult, but, in the end, I came down to the period from aged 54 to date (66). From 54 to 60 as an advisor to the Scottish Government I was involved in the development of the Climate Change and Flood Risk Management Acts – probably the most satisfying and rewarding work I have ever done. I retired at 60 and since then writing has been my favourite pastime: 5 novels and 1 short story collection on I’m still scribbling. I am also involved in the U3A which is great fun.
3. Who is your favourite fictional character over 60?
I don’t think I really have one, the obvious ones are Captain Ahab and King Lear for profundity, but you can never forget the first Dracula movie you saw. Take your pick.
4. You are alone in your house (no pets). You have three minutes to get out before the house collapses and burns to the ground. What one possession would you grab and take with you?
Again, an impossible question to answer. Practically, my mobile phone; it holds enough information to allow me to rebuild. Impractically, a signed Jo Lo Mo print which I dearly love.
5. What’s your favourite creative pastime?
Writing, writing and more writing.
6. Tell us something about yourself that’s surprising or unexpected.
I once did a song and dance routine with Manuel (Andrew Sacks) in aid of Comic Relief. It was truly dreadful.
7. Tell us four ways that you connect (with people, yourself, animals, creativity, whatever).
Since the pandemic most connections are virtual: Facebook, email, video calls etc. I am involved in poetry readings, improving people’s understanding of weather and climate change, a small creative writing group and weekly zoom coffee mornings with the friends I used to play badminton with. I’m also involved with two blogs, but to be fair these have been very quiet recently.