FORMER County Gazette reporter Clinton Rogers went out on a high when he left the BBC after more than 40 years last week.

Clinton's last assignment for Points West was delivered from the top of Wellington Monument.

Now he plans to set up his own company specialising in media training, corporate films and public relations.

Clinton said: “ After 40 years I just thought it was time for a change.

"I have had a terrific career with the BBC and walking away was never going to be easy. But I think the time is right."

Clinton, who lives in Bradford-on-Tone with his wife Joanne, was just 16 when he started his journalistic career on the Wellington Weekly News, having left Court Fields School.

From there he moved to the Somerset County Gazette and then on to the Bristol Evening Post, working in the Taunton office. After four there he began his career with the BBC.

Some years later he was responsible for launching BBC Somerset Sound, the county’s first radio station.

“Looking back I would probably count that as the proudest moment of my career. And to see it flourishing now fills me with pride,” said Clinton.

There was a two year stint with the old HTV West, before returning to the BBC to set up a Somerset operation for Points West.

Journalism has, he said, given him “everything he could wish for …and more” - assignments to war zones, interviews with celebrities including Paul McCartney and the late Sir Roger Moore as well as Prime Ministers and international sportsmen and women.

He added: “If I could wind the clock back I wouldn’t change a thing. The career has been amazing.

"We’ve exposed wrongdoing, helped people in difficult situations and shone a light on some wonderful stories.

"It really has been a privilege and I owe Points West a debt of gratitude for putting up with me for so long."

As for the future, he says he has no plans to be idle.

Clinton said: “I want to use my experience in print, radio and television journalism to help others now.

"So many people fail to understand how to make the most of the media, how to get their message across.

“Do it badly and you will fail. But if you do it well there are great rewards.

"My company will concentrate on public relations for local companies and organisations as well as media training and corporate films.

“Lockdown may not be an ideal time to start a new venture, but you can’t have everything."