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Profile image for Austin Mitchell

Austin Mitchell

Presenter, Writer

Yorkshire born and raised, Austin Mitchell first won attention in New Zealand as a host of current affairs shows in the 1960s, while teaching history at Otago University. Back home in England, he launched an eight year run as a TV journalist, and wrote 1972's The Half-Gallon Quarter-Acre Pavlova Paradise, a love letter to New Zealand which became a Kiwi bestseller. Mitchell returned 30 years later to see how the country had changed; the result was TV series/book Pavlova Paradise Revisited. Mitchell began his 46 year political career in 1977, as Labour MP in the English seat of Grimsby. He retired in 2015, and died, at 86, on 18 August 2021.

... he had already committed all the unforgivable sins: he was abrasive, ironic, satirical, funny, disrespectful, and he allowed comment to appear on his programme. Brian Edwards on Austin Mitchell's Kiwi television fame in the 1960s, in Edwards' 1971 book The Public Eye