Jeremy Kyle career timeline: From life insurance salesman to ITV notoriety

Jeremy Kyle has been presenting his show on Rupert Murdoch’s TalkTV since last year.

In the next episode of his current affairs programme, Jeremy Kyle Live, the broadcaster, 47, interviews Ghislaine Maxwell.

The disgraced British socialite is serving a 20-year prison sentence in Florida for procuring teenage girls to be abused by the financier Jeffrey Epstein.

But what has Kyle’s career involved up to this point?

From his time working as a life insurance salesman to his controversial ITV series The Jeremy Kyle Show, here are the key things to know…

Early life and first jobs

Kyle was born in Reading in 1965. His mother was a bank clerk, while his father was an accountant and personal secretary to the Queen Mother for 40 years.

After graduating with a History and Sociology degree from the University of Surrey, Kyle started out as a life insurance salesman before moving into recruitment. Later, he sold radio advertising space and it was while doing this that he was asked to fill a gap on a popular late-night confessional radio show, which eventually led to his broadcasting career.

On the airwaves

After stints on Orchard FM in Taunton, Somerset, and Leicester Sound during the Nineties, Kyle was signed by Kent’s Invicta FM in 1996. In 1997, he joined BRMB in Birmingham, presenting the shows Late & Live and Jezza’s Jukebox.

In 2000, Kyle moved to the Century FM network and launched a show called Jezza’s Confessions.

Two years later, he made his first broadcast on Virgin Radio, presenting Jezza’s Virgin Confessions, before leaving the station in 2004 to front the Capital Confessions show on London’s Capital FM.

Jeremy Kyle in 2008 (Getty Images)
Jeremy Kyle in 2008 (Getty Images)

The Jeremy Kyle Show

In 2005, Kyle moved his format to ITV with The Jeremy Kyle Show. The series was based on confrontations in which guests tried to fix their personal problems, from infidelity to addiction.

During the show’s run, Kyle was recorded referring to the guests as “thick as s***”. In September 2007, Manchester judge Alan Berg described the show as “trash” and a “form of human bear-baiting”.

He made the comments while sentencing one of the show’s guests, who head-butted his “love rival” during filming, for assault.

The Jeremy Kyle Show ran for 14 years until 2019, when it was cancelled by ITV after a guest, Steve Dymond, died by suicide days after filming an episode.

Steve Dymond (Facebook)
Steve Dymond (Facebook)

In a Channel 4 documentary called Jeremy Kyle Show: Death on Daytime, former employees on the programme claimed that they were encouraged to agitate guests before they appeared on stage, with one employee calling it “psychological carnage”.

Referring to Dymond’s death, one former staff member admitted to the filmmakers: “I felt like I had blood on my hands. We felt like we had killed someone.”

A statement from ITV said: “The show had a dedicated guest welfare team of mental healthcare professionals. Guests were supported prior to filming, throughout filming and after filming.

“ITV does not accept the central allegation of this programme of a ‘bad culture’ within the production team. ITV would never condone any of its production staff misleading or lying to guests.”

Kyle, meanwhile, said he was taking legal action against Channel 4, telling The Sun that he “would like to reiterate my deepest sympathies to the friends and family of Mr Dymond”.

He continued: “I’ve consistently maintained it would be inappropriate to discuss the tragic death of Steve Dymond before the legal inquest into it has concluded.

“Likewise, the false and damaging allegations made against me by Channel 4 are with the lawyers now… Now is not the time to debate or discuss what is an ongoing legal process. When I can respond, I will.”

Jeremy Kyle and Ghislaine Maxwell (TalkTV, Getty)
Jeremy Kyle and Ghislaine Maxwell (TalkTV, Getty)

Obesity documentaries and daytime game shows

Other series Kyle was involved with on the side of The Jeremy Kyle Show included Kyle’s Academy, a 10-part ITV series in which a team of life coaches and psychotherapists, led by Kyle, worked with five members of the public over an intensive fortnight to help them have a happier life.

He also fronted the show Half Ton Hospital, about morbidly obese people in the United States, and a documentary called Military Driving School, as well as the ITV game show High Stakes.

Other programmes included Jeremy Kyle’s Emergency Room and Britain’s Worst Husband.

He has also stood in for presenters on the ITV breakfast show Good Morning Britain.


In early September 2021, it was announced that Kyle would present TalkRadio Drivetime, and the following year, he announced his return to television to present a primetime show, Jeremy Kyle Live, for TalkTV.

On the show, he and “the industry’s most energetic pundits” talk politics and entertainment.