presenter • expert •engineer
James’ earliest adventures were building wooden sailing boats in the garden with his Dad and imagining sailing far away over the horizon. After several brushes with amateur drama he focused his career ambitions on engineering, but here’s one engineer who just can’t sit still.
James started his TV career at Pebble Mill as a researcher with BBC’s Motorshow, where he was quickly recognised as having an intuitive, hands-on and technical mind. Various behind-scenes roles followed that enabled James to deploy his skills: BBC shows Housecall, DIY-SOS, Crafty Tricks of War and Geronimo all tapped into his ingenuity, then his first presenter role on Channel Five’s wacky wildlife show: Will Work for Nuts. This bonkers and entertaining wildlife series gave Britain’s animals the chance to flaunt their natural abilities.
Here James was billed technical ‘genius’ amongst a trio of experts charged with devising mad-cap challenges for Britain’s unsuspecting animals. Sporting activities included bee racing and goldfish football. The show was awarded the Wildscreen Award for Innovation amongst critical applause from the TV press, and more presenter work followed.
James Cooper creates, designs and engineers the world around him. In his view there’s no facet of life that can’t be improved with a bit of head scratching, a spot of research, the right tools and some good old fashioned elbow grease.. whether that’s the food we grow, the chair we sit on, or the house we live in.
James has worked professionally across construction and engineering: As an industrial designer of the ‘Williams’ range of high performance jet boats – Winning the Queens Award for Export 2010. well as building houses, he’s renovated cars, bikes and boats, then crossed continents and oceans on them.
He has used his know-how to produce and present fun and inventive TV. If it can be imagined then it can be constructed and he’ll know how to do it. Well, he might, and if he doesn’t he’ll have a damn good go at it at any rate!
James can normally be found writing at the kitchen table, in his shed or on his vegetable plot. He lives in Gloucestershire as servant and chef to his wife Chrissie and their 4 boys, in a house he built himself of course!
Richard Hammonds Miracles of Nature - BBC2
Crafty Tricks of War – BBC2
Will Work for Nuts – Channel Five
The Secret Supper Club – Channel 4
Live Like An Animal – Nat Geo Wild/ Channel Five