20 questions with James Anderson

20 questions with James Anderson

Group Managing Director James Anderson featured in BL Global's 20 questions feature this month. Here's what he had to say...

Tea or coffee?

It depends on the time of day. I do like a McDonald’s cappuccino.

Favourite song ever?

Sunshine on Leith by The Proclaimers.

Most amazing place you’ve ever visited?

Table Mountain, South Africa.

Scariest thing that’s ever happened to you?

Growing up.

Your best quality?


The worst thing about you?

Admin, or my fat belly.

Favourite food?

Eton Mess.

Cats or dogs?

Dogs. I think I’m jealous of cats.

Can you play a musical instrument?

My poor mother tried her best to convince me to learn and she was right – it’s one of the biggest regrets of my life. I’m sure I’ve missed out on fame through a calling to the stage!

First job you had?

I was a Betterware Man. I delivered domestic booklets to houses in my town, went back three days later to take orders, and then strapped the items, including mops, to my bike for delivery. It was 1987 and I was 15 years old, making £75 a week on top of my paper round. I never asked my parents for money after starting that job.

Worst job you’ve done?

Developing photographs at Colour Care for three years during Uni holidays. I worked the night shift 10pm to 8am in a darkroom. It was hard graft! I cycled 10 miles each way to get to and from work. One morning a car ran me over. I flew over the bonnet of the car, but adrenaline kicked in and I cycled home. When the adrenaline ran out I was in agony, but I still went to work that night because I was worried I’d get sacked for not showing up.

What’s at the top of your ‘bucket list’?

I’m a big country music and Elvis fan so a trip to Graceland, Memphis and Tennessee would be top of my ‘bucket list’. I’m hoping to go for my 50th.

Favourite book?

My favourite was The Big Man by William McIlvanney. It’s part of the Laidlaw Trilogy - a gritty Scottish story. The book has been made into a film with Billy Connolly and Liam Neeson.

Sweet or savoury?


Have you ever met anyone famous?

Oh yes, the nicest famous person I’ve met is Lorraine Kelly. The most disappointing famous person I’ve met is Sir Bob Geldof. I’ll leave it at ‘disappointing’.  

Who would you like to be stuck in a lift with?

Not Sir Bob Geldof. I’d like to be stuck in a lift with Peter Kay.

What one item would you save if your house was on fire (family exempted)?

I take it my dog, Paddy, is included as family. I’d save my bed. I’m not a person of possessions.

Buzzword you hate the most?

Vegan - when it’s used as a buzzword.

What do you have for breakfast?

Scrambled egg and salmon on toast.

Something about you that people might be surprised by?

I ran the Edinburgh marathon. I was tricked into it by my Dad who’d raised money for charity and asked me to do a sponsored walk around Edinburgh. I turned up - wearing cargo shorts and casual trainers – to what turned out to be the Edinburgh Marathon! I finished it. I also ran the Great Scottish Run.


Click here to read the March/April edition of BL magazine.

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