Our man at the BBC

Peter Sumpter has worked with numerous international figures including Nelson Mandela during his career with the BBC.

Peter (1968-74), who is the Craft Leader of the Studio Managers for BBC TV news, has met many famous people, including top musicians and various American presidents. During the 1997 General Election campaign, he followed soon-to-be Prime Minister Tony Blair (his press pass from the time is shown here), while much more recently he was heavily involved in the BBC coverage surrounding Nelson Mandela's death.

"I wasn't the most academic of pupils, although the ethos of the School has served me well," he says. "Over the years, I have designed lighting for several programmes and lit several music items for TV. I have worked on BBC events around the UK involving local communities." In recent years, he has helped to develop the BBC School Report project, which won the 2013 European Diversity Award for journalism. The national project aims to develop journalistic skills among 11-16 year-olds.

In addition to his own history as a QE alumnus, Peter also has a work colleague of many years' standing who is the father of the School's current Head of English, Susannah Sweetman. Through this connection, he suggested that QE become involved in School Report. "With real-time deadlines to deliver an end product, the experience the pupils get out of this is fantastic and it gives a different dimension to the traditional learning process," says Peter.

The School duly took part for the first time in 2014, with Peter suggesting a list of roles for the boys that included student correspondents, editors (a senior editor, news editor and sports editor), researchers, a director, cameramen, picture editors, lighting operatives, a soundman and those with the skills to build a QE-branded backdrop and design the graphics. In March, QE joined the other participating schools taking part in an annual News Day, simultaneously creating video, audio and text-based news reports, and publishing them online.