Paul quickly learnt from the criticism he overheard, adjusting the way he presented his show. “I learnt not only by listening but by observation. I lived by the quote 'if we could see ourselves as others see us'. I did just that, I looked at myself to see what I could use to my advantage - I wasn't tall or suave like Bruce Forsyth for instance, he was king at the time, the top entertainer. I knew I would look all wrong if I tried to be like him. I read lots and lots of comedy and worked on developing my own style. But trying to combine two successful jobs almost killed me. I had to make a choice. Luckily the decision was made for me when I landed a summer season at Newquay. I seized my chance and moved into showbusiness professionally.”
In 1970 Paul was given another big break. He made his television debut on the talent show Opportunity Knocks. Although Paul came second, television executive Johnny Hamp spotted him and offered him a slot on Granada's popular TV show The Wheeltappers and Shunters Club. This proved to be the launching pad Paul had been waiting for.
So how does he feel about TV shows where the magicians reveal their secrets?
“They don't bother me. It only annoys the amateurs, not the professional magician. You see I know 15 different ways to cut a woman in half - these programs only ever show one. I bought a trick when I was young and could not get any entertainment out of it, even though I obviously knew how it worked. Then I saw a man perform the same trick and he got a fantastic reaction from the audience. At that moment I realised that the secret is never in the trick, it's always in the performer.”