Born Clement Murphy-Shaw, he sold antiques and cars before training at the Central School of Speech and Drama. After a series of elocution lessons, he joined BBC Two as an announcer/director in 1966 and stayed until 1973. He then moved on to the announcing staff at various ITV regional centres including Anglia (1973 – 1974), Tyne Tees (1974 – 1975 and 1991 – 1992) and Scottish TV, before moving to Border (1975). During this period, Clem was an active member of CND and wrote a book of poems as well as scripting/directing the odd small documentary.
He left Border TV to set up a production company called Prometheus Productions and secured a ‘first-look’ deal with the newly formed Channel 4. He made four major documentaries (three of them about environmental issues) – namely: Nativité Du Seigneur (1989); Antarctic Warriors (1990); Paths of Conflict (1992); Greenpeace – End of an Era? (1994).
Clem became a member of the Stalin Society in 2011 and regularly travelled from Oxford to the society’s meetings in London, contributing enthusiastically from the floor. When he joined the Communist Party of Great Britain (Marxist-Leninist) in 2013, he was the party’s only Oxford-based member.
Clem’s first wife was Jane Mark-Lawson. His son Tim, from his second marriage, ran Triptik Records from his studio in Heaton. He has since moved on, and is now an artist, living and working in Newcastle.
Clem died following a deterioration in his health after suffering a stroke.
With thanks to Jon Myer, Pirate Radio Hall of Fame, for the following information: “I am not sure exactly when he joined Radio 390, but I think it was either late-1966 or early 1967. The only recording I have of him dates from January 1967. If, as you say, he joined the BBC in 1966 that means he was either working for both the Corporation and a pirate station at the same time (unlikely but not unique) or left the BBC, joined the pirates and then returned to the Corporation. In February 1967, Ted Allbeury, the managing director of Radio 390, left the station to take over the ailing Britain Radio. He relaunched it under a new name – Radio 355 – a virtual facsimile of his former station, and persuaded a number of the R390 announcers to move with him. Clem Shaw was one of them, as was David Allan. Radio 390 was very successful, but in the middle of a long legal battle at the time and I suspect Ted thought it would be forced to close down soon. If that was to happen, having Radio 355 ready to inherit the audience made very good business sense, but in fact 390 battled on until July. Having two almost identical stations was not such a good idea, so Radio 355 changed its format and the guys who had joined from 390 were let go.”
Video Clips on the Internet
Here we present a selection of video clips featuring Clem which we found on social media sites or have made available from our own archive. The clips are presented here for additional reference. Inclusion of a video does not constitute an endorsement of the hosting site/channel/user. If you find any broken links below or are aware of an additional clip(s) which you believe may be a useful addition to this profile, please get in touch with us via our Contact page.
PICTURED: Clem Shaw. SUPPLIED BY: Paul R. Jackson. COPYRIGHT: Who's Who on TV? (1980).