Born in Seaforth, Liverpool in 1971, Craig Phillips is the younger of two children. His family moved to Shropshire in the late 1980’s, and at the age of 18, whilst working for a local construction company, he secured a bricklaying apprenticeship. Determined to excel in his chosen profession, he attended night school classes in advanced brickwork and civil engineering, achieving a City & Guilds qualification. A self made entrepreneur, Craig went on to set up and run a successful construction business throughout the 1990’s, employing 30 tradesmen and operating with an annual turnover of more than £1 million. Developing an impressive property portfolio, Craig also undertook a diverse range of projects including new builds and major structural conversions.
In the summer of 2000, Craig beat 45,000 applicants to appear alongside 9 other contestants on Britain’s first reality TV show Big Brother. The new millennium saw a new media phenomenon. Watched by over 10 million people, Big Brother was a huge success, riveting the public and media alike. After more than 9 weeks in the Big Brother house, Craig won the nations hearts with his cheeky humour and came out triumphant with 3.7 million votes, £70,000 prize money and a National Television Award for Best Live Television Moment of the Year. Craig famously donated his entire winnings to friend and Down’s syndrome sufferer Joanne Harris. Within 6 days of leaving the show, he had raised £250,000 to pay for her life-saving heart and lung transplant.
With his new found fame, Craig went on to combine his knowledge of construction and media savvy to forge a brilliant career as one of the UK’s leading DIY and home improvement experts.
Presenting and producing over 850 DIY and home improvement TV shows for major broadcasters including BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Five, Sky One, UKTV Style and Discovery Realtime. some of Craig’s TV credits include 60 Minute Makeover, Craig’s Trade Tips, House Call, Trading Up and his own shows Celebrity DIY with Craig Phillips and If it’s Broke Fix it.
Craig has reached millions of viewers throughout Europe and as far as Korea, New Zealand and the USA.
Making his acting debut in 2002, Craig played Buttons in pantomime production Cinderella. Continuing to entertain audiences across the country with his humour and personality, he has since appeared in pantomime productions of Aladdin, Jack and The Beanstalk and Beauty and the Beast.
In 2003, Craig joined a top BBC cameraman/director to form independent production company, Avent Productions. Craig has now executive produced, directed and presented shows for Discovery worldwide and the British Forces Broadcasting Service, reaching 17 countries in the United Nations.
Remaining as passionate as ever about construction, in 2005 Craig set up the largest independent construction training college in the north-west of England. Formally opened by Cherie Blair, the 25,000 square foot facility was designed and built by Craig and his team to simulate a real construction site environment. To date the facility has expanded to 100,000 square foot and has seen thousands of young people achieve NQV apprenticeships.
Nearly a decade after appearing on Big Brother, Craig released his autobiography ‘Craig Phillips My story: Building beyond Big brother’. From building a successful career, to dealing with personal tragedy and winning Britain’s first ever reality TV show, the book is the ultimate story of triumph over adversity.
To this day Craig remains a hugely popular figure who is just as comfortable rubbing shoulders with the famous and influential as he is on the construction site. Arguably the only reality star to have successfully adapted his high profile to his original profession, Craig is a fantastic role model for young people and works tirelessly to raise hundreds of thousands of pounds for charities close to his heart.