Ex-Radio 1 DJ Greening killed by heart attack after marathon sex and drugs binge

Last updated at 11:49 03 January 2008

Former Radio 1 DJ Kevin Greening died after taking large quantities of cocaine, ecstasy and GHB, a post mortem has revealed.

The 44-year-old presenter is believed to have suffered a heart attack at the home of his new partner in Wandsworth on Saturday night.

The man, a civil servant in his fifties, was initially arrested on suspicion of murder and supplying class A drugs. The murder claim has been dropped and he has been bailed over the drugs allegations.

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kevin greening

When Greening's death was first announced, his agent had said that he died 'peacefully in his sleep'.

Greening is best remembered for co-hosting the flagship Radio 1 breakfast show with Zoe Ball between 1997 and 1998. Cambridge graduate Greening, who came out publicly as homosexual in 1996, is said to have split from Andy, his partner of 20 years, last year.

He had undergone several operations recently after being involved in a motorbike accident.

Greening was an active campaigner of the Radio Academy and was serving on the 2008 Radio Festival organising committee.

He was awarded a fellowship in 2001, the only non-executive director to receive the honour in the academy's 25 years.

Tributes have continued to pour in from friends and colleagues praising Greening's brilliant radio skills and warm personality.

Friend and radio producer Neil Gardner said: "He was an extremely private man when it came to his personal life and did not talk much about it. He was just such a fantastic radio professional, and always interested in people and hearing their stories. It is such a huge loss."

Greening joined the BBC as a trainee in 1991 and was part of the launch line-up of Virgin Radio in 1993.

He transferred to Radio 1 within a year and from 1997 to 1998 was paired with Zoe Ball on the morning show - where some regarded him as the stronger talent in the successful partnership which added 230,000 listeners to the show. He worked most recently at London's Smooth Radio, on the weekday afternoon show.

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Cambridge-educated, he became renowned for his fast wit and tongue-in-cheek style, and for introducing a series of comic characters to his programmes including a hapless DJ called Raymond Sinclair, and Eric the Gardener.

He also broadcast on BBC Radio 5 Live, the BBC World Service, Jazz FM and XFM.

Friend Jeremy Nicholas, who co-hosted a breakfast show with Greening on the London station GLR, said: "He was a joy to work with. He was incredibly quick witted, his brain was lightning fast even at that godforsaken hour in the morning.

"Technically he was the best I've ever worked with. He sat at a control desk that looked like a Concorde flight deck and made it perform tricks like a two-seater stunt plane."

"Kev was so generous. If he thought of a funny line but felt it would work better coming from me, he'd happily give me a feed line and leave me to take the glory. He was like that."

BBC Radio 5 Live's Simon Mayo, who also worked with Greening at Radio 1, has said of him: "He had a very, very dry sense of humour and he was quite shy really, sometimes embarrassed about having achieved the level of fame thathe did have. He was naturally gifted, and I frankly find it rather hard tobelieve that he's not with us any more."

Nick Wallis from BBC Radio 5 Live, said that Greening was held in 'very high regard' by the entire industry.

He said: "I enjoyed Kevin's unassuming manner, generous nature and warm, wry, friendly outlook on life. I'm shocked he's not going to be here any more."

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