He is a regular presenter of the BBC World Service history programmes Witness and Sporting Witness. He was previously presenter of current affairs programme 'Citizen Manchester LGBT' on BBC Radio Manchester and has also presented the news on BBC and commercial radio stations across the North of England and Midlands including Smooth Radio, Century, Lincs FM, TFM, BBC Radio Manchester, BBC North West (radio), Imagine FM, Signal Cheshire and The Pulse of West Yorkshire. He has also presented on BBC Radio 3 and narrated documentaries for ITV.
Byrne is Creative Director of the successful radio production company, Made in Manchester which he set up with business partner James Hickman, the five-times World Butterfly Swimming Champion in May 2005.
Programmes either produced or executive produced by Byrne for Made in Manchester include:
|2006||Another Fine Mess: 80 Years of Laurel and Hardy||Norman Wisdom||BBC Radio 2|
|2006||Cartoon Kings||David Jason||ITV1|
|2006||From Bomb to Boo||Ashley Byrne||ITV1|
|2006||Citizen Manchester Strand||Various||BBC Radio Manchester|
|2007||Jah Wobble's Mystical Musical Tour||Jah Wobble||BBC World Service|
|2007||Laughter and Tears: The Les Dawson Story||Jo Brand||BBC Radio 2|
|2007||I Got Up Out of My Seat||David Frost||BBC Radio 4|
|2008||Salt N Pepa: Push It||Mista Jam||BBC 1Xtra|
|2008||Brass Britain||Stephen Tompkinson||BBC Radio 2|
|2008||Giving Way to a New Era||John Sergeant||BBC Radio 4|
|2008||In Search of Forgiveness||Julie Nicholson||BBC Radio 4|
|2008||How AIDS Changed America||Paul Michael Glaser||BBC Radio 2|
|2008||Pacific Ocean Blues: The Life and Death of Dennis Wilson||Roger Daltrey||BBC Radio 2|
|2008||Ali Abbas: In His Own Words||Hugh Sykes||BBC Radio 4|
|2009||Gay Life After Saddam||Aasmah Mir||BBC Radio 5Live|
|2009||In Search of Sid||Jah Wobble||BBC Radio 4|
|2009||Walking with Whitman||Stuart Maconie||BBC Radio 4|
|2009||In Search of the Wantley Dragon||Ian McMillan||BBC Radio 4|
|2009||Dick Emery: The Comedy of Errors?||David Walliams||BBC Radio 2|
|2009||Benny Hill: The Untold Story||Ben Miller||BBC Radio 2|
|2009||Lead Belly: A Secret History of Rock and Roll||Eric Burdon||BBC Radio 2|
In December 2007, Byrne managed to get Archbishop Desmond Tutu to apologise on behalf of the Anglican Church for the way in which some clergy had treated the world's LGBT community.
In April 2009, Made in Manchester came runner up in the Best Production Company in the North 'How Do' Awards
In May 2009, Byrne's 'Giving Way to a New Era' was nominated for a prestigious Sony Award.
In July 2009, Byrne's 'Gay Life After Saddam' for 5Live (which also featured actors Samuel Barnett and Paul Kendrick) was described by the press as 'The BBC at its Best' after it uncovered a catalogue of murder and torture being carried out against gay and trans Iraqis since the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003.
In October 2009, Byrne's company Made in Manchester embarked on a pioneering experiment to promote and premiere new audio drama via The UK's Independent newspaper. Turing's Test (starring History Boys' actor Sam Barnett) rose as high as number 7 in its category on the iTunes downloads chart. Subsequent dramas have included Death in Genoa starring Simon Callow as Oscar Wilde and Suzie Pugh and a Monster Too (a children's drama starring Coronation Street actress Vicky Binns). It's thought more dramas may be on the cards and Byrne has expressed his ambition to create 'a new high-profile platform' for drama and comedy on the web.
Byrne is also a Director of RIG, the Radio Independents Trade Body and has been leading a campaign to persuade the BBC to commission more radio programming from outside London.
www.madeinmanchester.tv1987 VFL draft
The 1987 VFL draft was the second draft to provide recruitment opportunities to clubs participating in Australian rules football's elite Victorian Football League. Held after the end of the 1987 season, it consisted only of the national draft itself.Alan Thorpe (footballer)
Alan Thorpe (born 18 October 1968) is an Australian rules footballer and a media commentator. He played for Sydney Swans and Footscray in the Australian Football League (AFL) and is a panel member on The Marngrook Footy Show.Andrew Brockhurst
Andrew Brockhurst (born 18 August 1964) is a former Australian rules footballer who played with Fitzroy in the Victorian Australian Football League (VFL/AFL).Brockhurst, a half back and wingman, was already 23 when he came to Fitzroy, having previously played at South Adelaide. After a third-place finish in South Adelaide's 1986 best and fairest award, he was picked up by Fitzroy with their first selection of the 1987 VFL Draft.He made 20 disposals on his league debut against the Brisbane Bears and wouldn't better that number in the rest of his 16 games that year.Andrew Obst
Andrew Obst (born 19 August 1964) is a former Australian rules footballer who played for Melbourne in the Australian Football League (AFL) and Port Adelaide in the South Australian National Football League (SANFL).Chris Waterson (footballer, born 1969)
Chris Waterson (born 27 December 1969) is a former Australian rules footballer who played with Fitzroy in the Australian Football League (AFL).
Waterson, a recruit from Cohuna, played nine senior games for Fitzroy in the 1990 AFL season and another four in the 1991 season. He selected with the 17th pick of the 1987 National Draft.Dean Strauch
Dean Strauch (born 4 June 1966) is a former Australian rules footballer who played with Carlton in the Victorian Football League (VFL).Dental Technologists Association
The Dental Technologists Association (DTA) is the professional body representing dental technicians in the United Kingdom.Fraser Murphy
Fraser Murphy (born 2 January 1963) is a former Australian rules footballer who played for Carlton in the VFL.
Murphy was a rover who played 107 games for Carlton. He was recruited in 1984, after finishing as runner-up for the J. J. Liston Trophy while playing for Geelong West in the VFA in 1983. He kicked 39 goals for Carlton in 1985, and played in Carlton's 1987 premiership team. After leaving the club in 1991 he moved to Collingwood, but did not end up playing a game for them, and then returned to the VFA with Werribee in 1992.Graham Wright
Graham Wright (born 6 June 1968) is a former Australian rules footballer, who played for Collingwood in the Australian Football League. Wright is the current recruitment manager for the Hawthorn Football Club.Grant Williams (footballer)
Grant Williams (born 15 November 1969) is a former Australian rules footballer who played for Melbourne in the Australian Football League (AFL) in 1992. He was recruited from the Sandy Bay Football Club in the Tasmanian Football League (TFL) with the 9th selection in the 1991 Mid-year Draft. He later returned to Tasmania and played for the Burnie Dockers.James Hickman
James Hickman (born 2 February 1976) is an English former competitive swimmer who represented Great Britain in the Olympics, FINA world championships and European championships, and England in the Commonwealth Games. He became a world champion five times on the 200 m butterfly in short course (25 m), twice world record holder, Commonwealth Champion and four times European Champion. He announced his retirement from the sport in 2004. During that year he reached the semi-final of the 100 m butterfly in the 2004 Athens Olympics, finishing with a time of 53.10 seconds. He also reached the semi-final in the 2000 Sydney Olympics finishing 6th (likewise in the 200 m butterfly). His best appearance in an Olympic final came in the 1996 Atlanta Games, where he placed 7th in the 200 m butterfly.
Hickman also owns a television and radio production company called Made in Manchester Productions. He set it up with Ashley Byrne (BBC broadcaster and former commercial radio boss) in May 2005. The company made From Bomb to Boom (about the Manchester bomb) for ITV1, Cartoon Kings presented by Sir David Jason (about animators Cosgrove and Hall) for ITV1 and Another Fine Mess for BBC Radio 2, presented by Sir Norman Wisdom (celebrating 80 years of Laurel and Hardy). Made in Manchester has also been commissioned to make a religious documentary for BBC Radio 4 which was broadcast in early 2007. They have also produced radio shows for BBC Radio Manchester in the Citizen Manchester Series, plus various other documentaries for the station. They have also produced "Jah Wobble's Mystical Musical Tour" for the BBC World Service, "Salt 'n' Pepa - Push it" for BBC Radio 1Xtra and also "Brass Britain" and a documentary about the Beach Boys for BBC Radio 2.
In 2008 Made in Manchester won the contract to deliver the PR and Communications for the FINA World Swimming Championships 2008 in the MEN Arena for which James was the Head of PR and Communications. The event was the first of its kind in a concert venue and won "Best Event Look" at the SportBusiness Awards 2008.
He currently works for Speedo International as the Global Sports Marketing Manager and manages the international sponsorships for the brand. He worked on London 2012 Olympics, 2013 FINA World Championships and 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games.
Hickman attended William Hulme's Grammar School.Liam Pickering
Liam Michael Pickering (born 9 September 1968) is a former professional Australian rules footballer who played for the North Melbourne Football Club and the Geelong Football Club in the Australian Football League (AFL).
His father, Michael Pickering, also played for North Melbourne.Radio Independents Group
The Radio Independents Group, or RIG, is the trade body that represents the interests of the independent radio producers of the United Kingdom. Established in June 2004, RIG is mandated to negotiate terms with broadcasters and audio consumers such as digital publishers, that are to the benefit of its members. The organisation is a non-profit making body, solely financed through membership fees and donations.Scott Salisbury
Scott Salisbury is a former Australian rules footballer who played over 200 games for Glenelg in the South Australian National Football League (SANFL) during the 1980s and 1990s.
Salisbury, who often played in the back pocket, was a member of Glenelg's 1985 and 1986 premiership teams. He represented South Australia regularly at interstate football and in 1987 was awarded All-Australian selection. On the back of this effort, the Sydney Swans recruited Salisbury in the 1987 VFL Draft but he never made a senior appearance in the VFL. He returned to Glenelg and captained the club in both the 1991 and 1992 seasons, including their 1992 SANFL Grand Final loss to Port Adelaide.
In 2002 Salisbury was inducted into Glenelg's Hall of Fame.Shane Fell
Shane Fell (born 29 September 1967) is a former Australian rules footballer who played for Sydney in the Australian Football League (AFL).
A forward, Fell played his early football at Glenorchy and was the TFL Statewide League's leading goal-kicker in 1989 with 114 goals before opting to ply his trade on the mainland.
Fell was initially recruited to Geelong but they offloaded him to Sydney in the 1989 VFL Draft. He was one of four Sydney player to make their debut in the opening round of the 1990 AFL season, one of which was future Brownlow winner Paul Kelly. The forward kicked five goals to equal the club record of most goals by a player in their first game with the club. He finished the year with 30 goals, his tally including a six-goal haul against Geelong at the SCG.Stephen Tingay
Stephen Tingay (born 13 August 1970) is a former Australian rules footballer who played with Melbourne in the Australian Football League (AFL) during the 1990s.
Recruited from Shepparton, Tingay was an energetic and hard working midfielder known for his blonde locks. The 1994 season was Tingay's best, being named as an All-Australian and finishing second in the Demons' best and fairest.
Tingay played the first nine games of the 1999 season before severe hip and buttock injuries sidelined him for the rest of the year and all of the following 2000 season. Sydney selected Tingay in the pre-season draft for the 2001 season; however, Tingay's continued injuries forced him into retirement by the end of 2001 and he never played a senior game for Sydney.Trevor Spencer (footballer)
Trevor Spencer (born 28 June 1965) is a former Australian rules footballer who played with Essendon, Melbourne and Geelong in the Victorian/Australian Football League (VFL/AFL).Wayne Peters
Wayne Peters (born 4 June 1969) is a former Australian rules footballer who played with Richmond in the Victorian Football League (VFL).Peters came to Richmond from Morwell, at pick 14 in the 1987 National Draft. He made his debut in round 21 of the 1988 VFL season, against Geelong at Kardinia Park. His other four league appearances all came in 1989.