Jim Reeve League Table

At William Hulme's Grammar School, in a particularly enlightened moment, several Nocturnal Emissions listening pupils decided to create a competition. Basically you would get points for your appearances on the programme and these would be calculated and compiled into a weekly table, known as the "Jim Reeve League Table". James was alerted to this a number of times by several pupils as they started a major campaign of letter writing and phone calls in order to attempt to become the Jim Reeve League Champion. This was all first mentioned to James on 1st July 1986 by Andrew Haffner who called up to tell him about it, although he gave the point system out incorrectly as follows:

> Sending a letter in - 1 point
> Getting your letter read out - 2 points
> Getting a reply from James - 3 points
> Phoning in - 4 points

However the correct system as used a little later was:

> Getting your letter read out - 1 point
> Getting a mention in someone else's letter or phone call - 2 points
> Phoning in yourself and appearing on the programme - 3 points
> Getting James to send you a signed photo - 4 points

But the achievement that earned you 5 points was when you received a genuine letter back from James!

A number of these prized letters still exist and are now available to view - all were received by Simon S-M and with letters like these, added to his (what seemed like) hundreds of letters and mentions on the programme, he walked away with the Jim Reeve League title with ease, despite only making one phone call appearance ever.

So here are the ones that have survived -


NUMBER 1 This letter was sent to me a couple of weeks after the last ever Nocturnal Emissions in 1989. I was near James's house on a Sunday afternoon 24th September (just coincidence of course) and I spotted him in the front garden (quite near the green strawberry pot) and so I shouted across to him hello and did he have a cassette of the last ever Emissions that I could borrow as I had fallen asleep near the start of it. James did little more than grump in response, and so I was surprised to receive a letter back a few days later almost apologising for not being friendlier to me on the Sunday and thanking me for my contributions!


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NUMBER 2 This letter was sent to me in early 1990 after I had written to James sending him a cassette I had made myself called "The Nocturnal Emissions : A Musical Tribute", which is featured elsewhere on this site. The cassette was basically full of the records that either I used to request all the time, or were famous on the programme for some other reason like "something for the chinese new year" etc. I wasn't expecting a reply from James so was pleasantly surprised with it!


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NUMBER 3 This photo was sent to me by James in 1989 (to be confirmed exactly when soon) a couple of weeks after I sent in a spoof letter pretending to be from a friend from school who sent James an example of my mum's shopping receipt. In fact I had written it myself and included a real receipt from a major shopping trip that my mum had done to Asda in Pilsworth - and according to my "friend" I ate a lot (which I didn't, but anyway). However I had not bothered to vet it, as I hadn't expected him to actually read out the whole shopping list from the receipt, so it had lots of odd things like cake covers, large baps and a jumper (in the days when no-one bought clothes from a supermarket), which James found highly amusing. Given that the receipt was clearly genuine, James must have actually believed that a friend of mine had taken the receipt to send it to him, because I received that signed photo from James with a copy of the receipt telling me there was a fifth columnist in my midst. I didn't actually know at the time what a fifth columnist was, so for a while I didn't have a clue that he had believed the spoof letter. Anyway, here is the signed photo...


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NUMBER 4 I've no idea what or when this compliments slip was from. Seems like it was in response to something I had sent him in 1988 or 89. I presume it was with something, as it would be strange to bother to just send me a compliments slip.


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Last Updated: Wed 26 December 2012