Huq in April 2006
|Native name||কনক হক|
|Born||Kanak Asha Huq
(1975-07-17) 17 July 1975
Hammersmith, London, England
|Residence||Ealing, London, England|
|Education||Notting Hill & Ealing High School|
|Alma mater||Robinson College, Cambridge|
|Employer||ITV, BBC, Sky|
|Known for||Blue Peter
The Xtra Factor
|Spouse(s)||Charlie Brooker (m. 2010)|
|Parent(s)||Mohammed Huq (father)
Roshan Ara Huq (mother)
|Relatives||Nutun Huq (sister)
Rupa Huq (sister)
Kanak Asha “Konnie” Huq (/ˈhʌk/; Bengali: কনক হক; born 17 July 1975) is a British television presenter and writer. She was the longest-serving female presenter of Blue Peter, having presented it from 1 December 1997 until 23 January 2008. She presented the 2010 series of The Xtra Factor on ITV2.
Early life and education
Huq was born in Hammersmith, west London to Sunni Muslim Bangladeshi parents who had emigrated to England in the 1960s. She grew up in Ealing, west London, with her two elder sisters, Rupa and Nutun. She was educated at Notting Hill & Ealing High School in London and left school with nine GCSEs and A-levels in physics, mathematics and chemistry. Huq studied sciences for her A-Levels, but chose to study economics at Robinson College, Cambridge and graduated from Cambridge University with a 2:1 degree.
In 1989, at the age of 14, Huq was a guest on Blue Peter with the National Youth Music Theatre, when she sang a solo. Before the 1992 general election, Huq interviewed Labour leader Neil Kinnock for the children’s programme Newsround. She appeared as a contestant on Blockbusters in the same year. She also appeared as an uncredited extra playing a schoolgirl in the BBC One sitcom 2point4 Children in the Series 2 episode “I’m Going Slightly Mad”.[not in citation given]
Huq’s presenting debut was in a GMTV Saturday morning children’s quiz show entitled “Eat Your Words” between 1994 and 1996. She was assisted by Mark Speight before Simon Parkin took over. In 1997, several months before joining Blue Peter, Huq presented Channel Five‘s early morning children’s programme Milkshake!, while also working as an editorial assistant for the now defunct Total Sport magazine.
Huq is best known for presenting the BBC children’s television programme Blue Peter, which she joined on 1 December 1997. One of her most memorable early moments on Blue Peter was visiting Bangladesh, and speaking to members of her extended family whom she had not seen for many years. In the programme’s 2004 “Summer Expedition” to India, Huq became an extra in the Bollywood film Musafir (2004), and practised dancing alongside its stars. For the programme’s 2004 “Welcome Home” appeal, she made an emotional visit to Angola hoping to reunite children with their families (from which both had been separated due to war). In 2008, during her last programme, she broke a Guinness World Record by managing to pin 17 Blue Peter Badges onto fellow presenter Andy Akinwolere’s shirt in a minute.
In March 2007 she apologised to viewers after a competition on the programme was faked, saying, “We’d like to say sorry to you because when this mistake happened, we let you down.” She was later reported as saying that this event contributed to her decision to leave the programme.
On 31 May 2007, Huq announced that she would be leaving Blue Peter. On 22 January 2008, Huq hosted her final Blue Peter, with a clip show of her highlights through the ten years she had been on the programme. She is the third longest-serving Blue Peter presenter and its longest-serving female host, having passed Valerie Singleton‘s record on 1 October 2007.
The Xtra Factor
In early 2003 Huq was briefly a presenter for Top of the Pops. She presented GMTV‘s LK today coverage of New York Fashion Week on the week of 10 September 2007. In June 2007 she was a guest panellist on the comedy gameshow 8 out of 10 Cats.
In December 2007 Huq appeared on a celebrity version of Ready Steady Cook with Blue Peter co-presenter Andy Akinwolere, and played a servant (also called Konnie, last name unknown) on the last episode of the second series of Robin Hood. Also in 2007, she began presenting the ITV1 London show London Talking, a political debate show, alongside Vanessa Feltz and Nick Ferrari.
She has also co-presented some of the weekly Your News programme for BBC News in 2008. On 14 April 2008 Konnie was seen filming at Colchester Zoo for the third series of Channel Five show Zoo Days which was broadcast from June 2008. Also in 2008, Huq presented The Red Bull Air Race with Dougie Anderson for Channel 4.
Huq appeared with her future husband Charlie Brooker in his satirical review programme Screenwipe in December 2008 on BBC Four. Here, she hosted a mock version of a “mission documentary” entitled Konnie’s Great British Wee, in which she claimed to be on a mission to combat paruresis in males. Huq appeared alongside Charles Kennedy on This Week on 18 December 2008. She appeared on the CBBC series M.I.High as herself in the episode “The Big Freeze” broadcast on 22 January 2007.
She presented Guinness World Records Smashed with Steve Jones on Sundays at 6:00 pm on Sky1; she has attempted some records herself including moonwalking and trampolining. On 15 May 2009, Huq began to present entertainment show Hannah-Oke on The Disney Channel with Duncan James.
In December 2009 Huq won the Best Rising Star Screenplay Angel award at the Monaco International Film Festival for the short story Ahmed and Mildred. In March 2014 Ahmed and Mildred was selected to receive funding from Film London.
For two years running Huq has presented the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Live from Stratford upon Avon – a web project aimed at showing theatre productions in schools. In July 2012 the project web-streamed a performance of I Cinna (The Poet). In November 2013 a recording of the Globe Theatre production of Richard II was shown in 3,000 schools. In both cases the performance was followed by a question-and-answer session hosted by Huq.
On 15 September 2006, Huq became one of the presenters of The Tube with Tony Wilson, Alex James and Emily Rose on Channel 4 Radio working with production company UKoneFM. The first edition was broadcast on 3 November 2006. Huq made her debut as a news presenter on the BBC Asian Network in September 2007, in a series of documentaries on a radio current affairs programme called the Asian Network Report. In 2013, she took part in the Radio 4 series Great Lives, nominating Ada Lovelace.
Olympic Torch incident
On 6 April 2008, Huq participated in the London leg of the 2008 Summer Olympics torch relay on its journey to Beijing, China, as one of eighty torch carriers. When in Ladbroke Grove a protester tried to grab the torch from her whilst Huq was about to give the torch to the next runner. Huq was not hurt in the incident. Police wrestled the protester to the ground and arrested him. She, however, voiced concern over the Chinese torch guards, saying “They were very robotic, very full on, and actually I noticed them having skirmishes with our own police and the Olympic authorities before our leg of the relay”.
On BBC News later that day she defended her decision to carry the torch, saying she “did the procession because I believe in the Olympic values, the ideals, I think sport on a global scale is a brilliant thing, it transcends culture, race, money,” despite what she called China’s “terrible track record when it comes to human rights.”
Huq is currently a celebrity ambassador for the British Red Cross, for which she recorded the video “If I had HIV, would you kiss me?” as part of a campaign against stigmatisation of people living with HIV.
In 2005, Huq took part in BBC One show Comic Relief Does Fame Academy. She was the third contestant to be voted off, after her rendition of Kim Wilde‘s Kids in America. She also travelled to Uganda and met orphan children, on behalf of Comic Relief.
In 2008 Huq travelled to Afghanistan with the charity Afghanaid to film a BBC Lifelines appeal, which was aired on 21 September. Huq was an ambassador for Gold Challenge, part of the official mass participation legacy programme for the London 2012 Olympic Games.
On 26 July 2010, Huq married satirist Charlie Brooker at the Little White Wedding Chapel in Las Vegas after a nine-month relationship. They have two children: Covey, born 23 March 2012, and Huxley, born 28 February 2014.
|1993||Eat Your Words||Main presenter alongside Simon Parkin|
|1997||The Mag||Presenter for Channel 5‘s youth show|
|Milkshake!||Main presenter alongside Lucy Alexander|
|1997–2008||Blue Peter||Main presenter alongside various co-presenters|
|2002–2004||UK Top 40||Main presenter alongside Adrian Dickson|
|2005||Comic Relief Does Fame Academy||Contestant (out third)|
|2006||The Tube||Main presenter alongside Tony Wilson, Alex James and Emily Rose|
|2007||The Sarah Jane Adventures||Cameo appearance|
|8 out of 10 Cats||Panellist|
|New York Fashion Week||Main presenter for GMTV coverage|
|London Talking||Main presenter alongside Vanessa Feltz and Nick Ferrari|
|Robin Hood||A servant called Konnie|
|2008||Al Murray’s Happy Hour||Celebrity guest|
|Your News||Main presenter alongside Laura Jones, Manish Bhasin and Adam Parsons|
|The Weakest Link||Contestant on Blue Peter special|
|UK School Games||Main presenter alongside Nigel Clarke|
|When Beauty Goes Wrong||Main presenter|
|Charlie Brooker’s Screenwipe||Presenter of the mock documentary in Episode 4 ‘Konnie’s Great British Wee’|
|Are You Smarter Than A 10 Year Old?||Contestant|
|2008–2009||Zoo Days||Presenter of the Colchester edition of the show|
|Guinness World Records Smashed||Main presenter alongside Steve Jones|
|Hannah-Oke||Main presenter alongside Duncan James|
|The Wright Stuff||Panellist for the Week|
|The Daily Politics||Guest reporter|
|I’m a Celebrity… Get Me out of Here! NOW!||Panellist|
|Jack Osbourne: Adrenaline Junkie||Celebrity participant|
|2010||The Archive Hour: Open Sesame||Guest reporter|
|The Xtra Factor||Main presenter from Series 7|
|Mind Your Language||Main presenter|
|71 Degrees North||Contestant Series 1|
|This Week||Guest reporter|
|Shocked Britain||Main presenter|
|Would I Lie to You?||Guest panellist|
|2012||The Real Hustle: Celebrity Chancers||Celebrity Hustler|
|Pointless Celebrities||Contestant paired with Angellica Bell|
|Blockbusters||Contestant, paired with Keith Duffy in second game|
|This Week||Guest reporter|
|A Touch of Cloth Series II||As Herself|
|Great Lives||Episode 31: Ada Lovelace|
|2015||Sky News Sunrise||Guest|
|King of the Nerds||Main Presenter|
|2016||The One Show||Presenter|
|The Penguin Podcast||Podcast interview with James Oswald|
|2017||The Penguin Podcast||Podcast interviews with Tom Fletcher , Harriet Harman, , Jo Nesbo  and Carlo Rovelli |