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This article from the BBC retirees’ magazine, Prospero (November 2006), commemorates the dedicating of radio drama studio in the Mailbox, where The Archers is recorded, to the memory of sound designer, Mark Decker.
Thanks to Peter Poole for sharing this article.
The following comments were left on the Pebble Mill Facebook group:
Julian Hitchcock: ‘How very sad. In my own BBC years, everyone liked Mark immensely and respected his serious and thoughtful approach to the development of sound engineering. I am terribly sorry to hear this news. It’s touching to celebrate Mark’s work and commitment in this particular manner. I knew Sue well and offer her my deepest condolences.’
Ray Lee: ‘Mark was a true professional. He pioneered work with the Calrec Soundfield Mic, wich gave some atonishing results and when the stereo sound was listened to on headphones, you really could hear things coming from behind and over your head.’
Ed Billington: ‘As a studio attendant I worked with mark sitting up the studio’s a great chap always a gent am sorry to hear this news.’
Kath Shuttleworth: ‘I had the pleasure of working with Mark on The Archers and many other Radio Drama projects over the years both as Spot SM and Gram Op. I learnt so much from him and always admired his work. We worked together on moving the Radio Drama Studio from Pebble Mill to The Mailbox and I was gutted when we lost him. Today I sit in what was his chair at the front of the studio mixing The Archers and I can only hope that I do the job half as well as he did. He was truly inspirational, a complete gentleman, and still very much missed.’
I also worked with Mark Decker on radio drama and it was always a pleasure. He was a true pioneer and very humble. He used to teach our department about digital technology when the outside world were not even aware of its existence. He was kind and dedicated and loved his curries in Balsall Heath. I remember going with the whole cast of Zorba the Greek, a lot of the actors came from London and they loved it. It was a tradition with Mark to go for a curry and I have happy memories of that.
I used to think the Decca tree was named after him, Decker tree. that would have been fitting for him.
I’m fairly certain it was Marc, repeat Marc – probably a common mistake!