Radio 1 RPF

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RPF Fandom
Name(s): Radio 1 RPF, BBC Radio One RPF, BBCR1
Scope/Focus: BBC Radio 1 presenters, producers and associated individuals
Date(s): 2012-present
See also: One Direction, Gryles, Tomlinshaw, British Singers RPF
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Radio 1 RPF is an RPF fandom centering around the presenters and producers working at BBC Radio 1, often paired with members of One Direction.

Fandom History

With the notable exception of one work posted as early as 2005,[1] the fandom's presence on AO3 begins in the fall of 2012 in the form of crossovers with One Direction. Because of the amount of canon interaction between One Direction members and Radio One staff, due to the band's numerous partnerships with the radio station and to the well-publicized friendship between Harry Styles and Nick Grimshaw, there is significant overlap between the two fandoms.

Though there existed a small fannish following for Nick Grimshaw's night-time show on the BBC, the fandom took off after he was named the next host of the iconic Breakfast Show, starting September 2012.

The Breakfast Show acquired a following of international fans present mainly on Tumblr and on Twitter, some of whom call themselves the Breakfast Babes.[2][3] Breakfast Show fans might live-blog the show on Tumblr or Twitter as well as create fanworks such as meta, fic, podfic, graphics, vids (etc) about the team dynamics and intra-team ships, independent of One Direction.

Greg James, presenter of BBC Radio 1's 4-7pm slot, also makes regular appearances in Radio 1 RPF and Radio 1/One Direction crossovers, either as a background character or paired with 1D's Louis Tomlinson. This is likely due to the fact that he and Tomlinson were paired up during One Direction's "takeover" of the radio station on October 6, 2012 as promotion for the Radio 1 Teen Awards, and due to the 1D fandom's fixation on height difference in Louis ships.

Common Pairings

The Fourth Wall

The fourth wall in Radio 1 fandom is paper thin to non-existent.


The Breakfast Show team in general and Nick Grimshaw in particular are known for being aware of, monitoring and often mentioning Tumblr activity about themselves.

As part of the 2012 effort to radically rebrand the Breakfast Show to a younger demographic, social media producer Laura-May Coope (aka LMC) created a Tumblr account for the program, sending its Tumblr fandom into a frenzy as team members discussed finding and reading their own tags on the site. Tumblr user radio-done wrote, in caption to a reblog of a clip of that moment, tellingly entitled "the great radio 1 tumblr debacle":

(it’s cute ‘will you teach me how to do a gif? is that what they’re called, like them dancing people?’ until they start talking about searching their tags…then it becomes terrifying).[4]

The team quickly became conscious of the unease their fourth wall breaks created. After another early mention of the Breakfast Show's Tumblr account, this exchange occurred on air:

Nick Grimshaw: Why do people on Tumblr not like it when we talk about Tumblr? Is it like Fight Club?

Matt Fincham: It's like a secret club, I think they'd rather remain secret.

Nick Grimshaw: So I probably shouldn’t talk about it on the Radio 1 Breakfast show, really, should I? Also, not that secret, millions of people on it. They never like us talking about it, we always get really aggressive texts, [they'll] be like "Shut up about Tumblr, Tumblr’s for us." So we’re gonna have Tumblr beef I imagine, right now.[5]

The show's Tumblr appears to have been deleted or re-purposed for use by the whole Radio 1 and Radio 1 Xtra stations, with the team making use of Twitter to communicate with fans. However, there is plenty of evidence that the team still visit Tumblr. Shout-outs to Tumblr and specific fan accounts occur regularly, sometimes asking that Tumblr fans provide them with specific manips or gifs.[6] In May 2014, assistant producer Ian Chaloner instagrammed and tweeted a screencap of a Tumblr post quoting that morning's show.[7] At times when the cameras have been on in the studio, the team could be seen with Tumblr open on their computers.

Fanfiction and shipping

There is no doubt all involved are aware of fanfiction and shipping, both within Radio 1 RPF and crossed with One Direction. Their public response appears to be mostly amused.

Nick Grimshaw and Matt Fincham have bickered on air about whether their ship name should be 'Grincham' or 'Finshaw'.[8]

On February 7, 2014, when Harry Styles gave Nick Grimshaw a seemingly spontaneous phonecall during the show, producer Matt Fincham could be heard in the background, gleefully saying:

Tumblr is about to explode. That’s for all the Gryles fans out there.[9]

Greg James has been praised by fandom for his understanding of fourth wall issues. In a departure from typical, often cringe-worthy interviews seeking to shock or embarrass fans or celebrities by bringing up fanfic, in his August 2013 interview of 1D's Niall and Louis he explained:

I'm not going to expose these people's fanfiction, because I've learnt a lot about this world, it's their world, it's private, they can do what they want, they can write the weird stuff.

Instead, the trio acted out short stories written specifically for the occasion by listeners of the show.[10]

Example Fanworks and Fandom Activities



Earliest AO3 fics by pairing

Earliest podfics by pairing


Fandom Resources

External Links


  1. ^ sunsetmog, Two Bags of Chips and I'll Race You There, posted July 28, 2005
  2. ^ Breakfast Babes Tumblr tag
  3. ^ blamefincham, Breakfast Babes Map
  4. ^ radio-done (deleted username), the great radio 1 tumblr debacle audio clip, reblogged by grimmystyle on October 9, 2012
  5. ^ seaw33d, grimmy on tumblr pt 2, audio clip posted on Soundcloud on October 24, 2012 (retrieved Sept 5, 2014)
  6. ^ grincham-n-larry, untitled Breakfast Show transcript, posted on Tumblr April 29, 2014
  7. ^ ichaloner, This really sums up morning's radio show, posted on Instagram on May 14, 2014 (retrieved Sept 5, 2014)
  8. ^ grincham-n-larry, untitled transcript, posted on Tumblr December 11, 2012
  9. ^ YouTube video of the incident, Feb 7, 2014; lilyfbaby, untitled transcript, posted on Tumblr February 7, 2014
  10. ^ BBC Radio 1, One Direction Act Out Fan Fiction with Greg James #1DGregJamesFanFic, posted to YouTube August 28, 2013
  11. ^ lost-in-daze, untitled post, posted on Tumblr February 28, 2014