Obituary: Gaydio founder Simon ‘Nicksy’ Nicks dies age 44

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The funeral has been held for a DJ and founder of Gaydio, who has died age 44.

Simon ‘Nicksy’ Nicks was a presenter of the annual Manchester Pride event and a founding part of LGBT radio station Gaydio.

Tributes have been pouring in from the LGBT community, radio fans, family and friends since his 29 May death.

His widower, Liam Nathan Nicks, described his late husband as “brave and determined” in an emotional tribute.

Arlene Foster

Born in Gateshead, Nicksy began his career in 1992 when he was recruited as an Atlantic252 presenter.

At the time the station was using an Irish frequency to create a national commercial station for the UK without the permission of the Radio Authority.

It’s commercial success encouraged other radio groups to create their own national commercial stations and so is the de facto inspiration for stations like Virgin Radio.

After leaving Atlantic252 he worked for a large number of stations for 25 years until he was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year.

Former Lord Mayor of Manchester and Mr Gay UK, Cllr Carl Austin-Behan, said they first met in 2001 at Essential Nightclub when Nicksy was presenter on Galaxy.

He commented: “We hit it off straight away and became friends.

“He was a massive advocate of Manchester’s Gay Village as soon as he moved to the city, he was very committed to the village not only working in the heart of it but living there as well.

“Nicksy helped launch Gaydio when it was just a few hours a day for 28 days of the year before it got its full-time license.

“He hosted the drive time show with Rowetta, which he did for free to help establish the station.

“Having someone of his stature on Gaydio gave it gravitas and led the station to where it is today.

“He then allowed the station to broadcast his networked talk show, Late Night Nicksy.

“The show was one of the most inclusive things I’ve ever heard in broadcasting, not least because of some of the bizarre topics he brought up.”

Cllr Austin-Behan continued: “He used to fill the dance floor at Essential Pop Lounge – playing anything anybody asked for – he loved music, he loved people, he loved life!

“He was always there for advice, and has helped me so much along my road to where I am today. I will always be truly grateful for that.”

His husband Liam Nathan Nicks said: “Nicksy was a legend to so many people but to me he was the most caring person I have ever met.

“Throughout his illness he proved just how brave and determined he could be, that will always fill me with pride.

“There will never be another Nicksy, but I will always look back with such fondness of the time we spent together. I only wish it had lasted longer.”

At the time of his death he was Head of Content at the British Forces Broadcasting Corporation. He had also served as Programme Controller for Hallam FM (Sheffield), Star FM (Cambridge) and worked at the BBC.

Dominic Walker from Wire FM said: “Nicksy was a highly accomplished radio presenter and manager.

“He worked for many of the iconic stations that are household names across the country.

“He was a broadcasting great who will be sorely missed by his colleagues and friends in the industry.”