show episodes
 
It's about words, written and read, maybe spoken out loud in person, on stage, or recorded and even sung and presented (mostly) by Philip Holden. Long form chats with creators and users of words - pretty relaxed - just you and us. In these chats the guest brings a word and so does Philip - and thereby hangs a tale... Episodes so far have featured James Graham, Ian Tucker-Bell, Tom Carradine, Liam Drew and Arthur Smith, James O' Brien, Peter Oborne and Ian McMillan with more to come... All su ...
 
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show series
 
Despite being named by The Times as the best current English-language comedian in the world, Stewart Lee insists that nobody really knows who he is. His absence from the panel show circuit, resistance to social media and use of multiple on-stage personae may be contributory factors. In the first Full Disclosure of 2022, James tries his hand at gett…
 
Founded in 1996 and based in London, the Graces CC is the first cricket club in the world specifically for LGBT people. Until this year, it was the only such club but there is now one other, the Birmingham Unicorns. Stuart Anthony is the Graces captain, Chris Sherwood its press and publicity officer. They explain what the club has meant for them an…
 
I'm Philip Holden and this is Ideas in Writing - the podcast where we talk to creative people about words - mostly from books that they have written and recently published... The guests bring along a word and so do I...if only I could rememnber that... In this episode I talk with Robin Ince - Live at the Oast Theatre in Tonbridge after he visited M…
 
Realising there was nothing he could not do, Johnny Vaughan left school and did nothing. Before becoming the presenter of the Big Breakfast and the drivetime host on Radio X, Vaughan spent much of his life navigating a host of hostile institutions and forming unlikely friendships. In this week’s episode, James speaks to Johnny about his life before…
 
The incomparable Henry Blofeld switches on the festive lights as the guest of Peter Oborne and Richard Heller in their latest cricket-themed podcast. Henry explains his choice of the nailbiting finishes in the cricket matches beautifully described in his latest book Ten To Win… And The Last Man In. He also describes his recently-completed project: …
 
When Sue Perkins was asked by her manager to present a programme about competitive baking, she declined the offer on multiple occasions. After lots of persuading, Perkins finally agreed to work on the show that would go on to become the most-watched programme on British television. At its peak, The Great British Bake Off attracted an audience of 16…
 
Tanya Aldred has become one of Britain’s most respected cricket writers, contributing notably to The Guardian, The Cricketer, Wisden Cricket Monthly and many other media. She is a co-editor of The Nightwatchman, the publication which showcases the best cricket writing every quarter. For the past three years, she has contributed one of the most sign…
 
The comedian, actor and musician, Bill Bailey describes his upbringing in the town of Keynsham in Somerset as idyllic. He credits his strong work ethic to his father who was a GP in the village and whose waiting room was situated in the front of their family home, where, occasionally he’d bump into ailing strangers as they attempted to navigate the…
 
Scyld Berry, a former editor of Wisden, has watched nearly 500 England Test matches (more than anyone in history), and reported them for The Observer and then The Daily Telegraph. He has just published a penetrating account of all the countries where he has seen England on tour: Beyond The Boundaries, published by Fairfield Books. He is the guest o…
 
Les Dennis has been a star in Britain's light entertainment scene for decades, but his career began off screen as a stand-up comedian in the working men's clubs of Northwest England. By the 1980s Dennis had become a household name, including as the host of the much-loved Family Fortunes. After a professional lull accompanied by a turbulent private …
 
By popular demand … the brilliant West Indian cricket commentator Fazeer Mohammed returns as a guest of Peter Oborne and Richard Heller in their latest cricket-themed podcast. Speaking from Sri Lanka, where he is commenting on the current West Indies tour, with his customary ebullience, eloquence and erudition he reviews a turbulent period for Engl…
 
When he published his first memoir back in 2014, the actor and author Alan Cumming took a deep dive and opened up about his traumatic childhood. In his second memoir, Baggage: Tales from a Fully Packed Life, he dispels the myth that he had 'overcome' his trauma or 'triumphed' over it. Cumming believes that a willingness to be vulnerable is what cap…
 
Rafaelle Nicholson is the author of Ladies And Lords: A History Of Women’s Cricket In Britain. Having previously presented the highlights of the first six hundred years or so, she returns to share the dramatic events and big personalities of the next eighty, as the latest guest of Peter Oborne and Richard Heller in their regular cricket-themed podc…
 
How does a miner's daughter from Bishop Auckland in County Durham end up in the White House? Whilst her community was small, a combination of luck, opportunity and sharp intellect led Fiona Hill to Russia, opening her eyes to our shared human experience and deepening her geopolitical understanding. Hill's diplomatic qualities helped her work under …
 
As a professional cricketer he was nicknamed ‘Whispering Death’ for his light-footed, silent run up to the bowling crease. As a commentator he was known for his unflinching and direct analysis of the game. Then, in the aftermath of the murder of George Floyd in 2020, Michael Holding lead an impassioned and unexpected message about the “dehumanisati…
 
In the winter of 1953, the MCC sent a full-strength England team to the West Indies for the first time, led by Len Hutton, the first professional captain. The party included Denis Compton, Tom Graveney, Peter May, Trevor Bailey, and two pairs of great bowlers, Jim Laker and Tony Lock, and Fred Trueman, and Brian Statham. They played a thrilling ser…
 
I'm Philip Holden and this is Ideas in Writing - the podcast where we talk to creative people about words - all kinds of word - funny ones, sad ones and strange ones... The guests bring along a word and so do I...it's all downhill from there on... In this episode - the first face to face one of the series - I meet up with the fun David Barry who ma…
 
When he was 25 years old, Jimmy Carr realised that material wealth would not bring him happiness. He decided to sack off his safe job in middle management to become a comedian despite having no previous comedy experience. He went on to become one of Britain’s biggest names but still believes he possesses no inherent talent for his craft. His first …
 
She would not have become an MP were it not for her sister, Jo Cox who was murdered on a street in Birstall, West Yorkshire in 2016 by a white supremacist terrorist. Speaking to James one week after the killing of Sir David Amess MP, Kim Leadbeater questions how much has changed since her sibling's death. After fighting and winning a toxic campaign…
 
“I expected a bit more from England”, says a magisterial Imran Khan, at the start of the latest podcast from Peter Oborne and Richard Heller, rebuking the recent cancellation of England’s short cricket tour of his country. In a clip from an extended interview with Peter Oborne, the Pakistan Prime Minister and former captain suggests that England st…
 
Joe Tracini was only 18 months old when he first performed on stage with his Dad, Joe Pasquale. By the time he was 15 he was named as the most promising comedy act by Ken Dodd. Tracini then landed a role in Hollyoaks but his acting career was overwhelmed by a serious drug and alcohol addiction. Then in 2018 Tracini revealed that he had been diagnos…
 
After a first-class career as a pace bowler for Hampshire, John Holder became one of England’s finest umpires. He was a popular expert on Test Match Special and the regular Observer newspaper feature “You Are The Umpire.” On the first-class list from 1983 to 2009 , he joined the Test panel in 1988 and after only a handful of matches was chosen to b…
 
When Bernardine Evaristo was in her thirties she decided she wanted to win the Booker Prize. After breaking away from her career in theatre, Evaristo eventually became the first Black British person to receive the literary award and was catapulted into the international spotlight with her novel, Girl Woman, Other. But Evaristo’s life began in “curt…
 
George Dobell, chief correspondent of Cricinfo but not for much longer, is one of the most independent, incisive and informed cricket writers in Britain. Never a captive of the cricket Establishment or a champion of any interest except everyday cricket fans, he has broken or developed some of the biggest stories in English cricket. He brings unique…
 
Waheed Arian spent his childhood fleeing the war zones of Afghanistan. After recovering from an almost fatal illness at a Pakistan refugee camp as a child, he set his sights on becoming a doctor. Putting his life in the hands of people smugglers, Waheed eventually reached the UK and studied medicine at Cambridge. He now saves lives as an NHS A&E me…
 
The Deputy Leader of the Labour party was brought up by a parent who could not read or write. After getting pregnant and leaving school aged 16, Angela Rayner became a home carer where she found her feet as a union representative, eventually rising to be Unison’s most senior official in the North West. Now she’s taking on the government over worker…
 
In the run up to the 2016 Trump election, Joe Mulhall of Surrey, England managed to convince the American white supremacist terrorist group, the Ku Klux Klan, of his support for them. Shortly afterwards he found himself armed and accompanying an Alabaman militia group on the hunt for undocumented migrants and ISIS members on the Mexican border. Mul…
 
After leading a series of successful challenges to the Brexit process, Jolyon Maugham QC was thrust into the limelight and depicted by right-wing Brexiteers as an out of touch, elitist, Remainer. But for the first 17 years of his life, Jolyon was unaware of the existence of his biological Eton-educated father and was brought up on ‘nuisance payment…
 
In recent months, South Africa has been rocked by the testimonies from black players of the isolation, hostility and outright racial abuse they have encountered playing in first-class and international cricket. Two expert South African cricket broadcasters and authors, Mo Allie and Aslam Khota, relay these stories and their impact as the guests of …
 
Annie Chave is the founder and editor of County Cricket Matters magazine and a regular contributor to Guerilla Cricket. Rob Eastaway is a writer, lecturer and cricket-lover who produced a clear and witty book explaining cricket’s mysteries called What Is A Googly? as well as several explaining the mathematics behind such everyday mysteries as why b…
 
Former first-class cricketer and leading historian André Odendaal has made it his personal mission to reconstruct the true story of South African cricket from its beginnings. He reveals more of the black, mixed-race and Asian-descent players whose talents and achievements were suppressed and for whom opportunity was denied by South Africa’s white r…
 
When John Amaechi OBE was a boy, his white grandfather would lean out of the car window to shout racist abuse at other drivers whilst he sat in the back. He went on to become the first British NBA star and is now an organisational psychologist, called upon to solve intractable people problems in companies wanting to embrace workplace diversity. His…
 
Joe Lycett, the comedian formerly known as Hugo Boss has no discernable backstory of trauma to speak of. He has ‘a tendency to do just enough’ and is frustrated with himself when he accepts the offer of work. But he is motivated by a strong moral compass and a desire to dazzle. Tickets for his 2022 UK and Ireland tour, More, More, More! How do you …
 
Lonsdale Skinner was Surrey’s wicketkeeper-batsman in the early 1970s and also played cricket in the same role for his native Guyana in the West Indies. Since 2013, he has been chairman of the African Caribbean Cricket Association which campaigns for fair treatment and greater representation of African Caribbean people throughout English cricket. A…
 
Having separated from her husband, Lucy Kellaway quit her full-time, high-status job as a journalist at the Financial Times to become a trainee teacher at a secondary school. In Re-educated, Lucy shows that age is no barrier to ripping up and starting again. Her charity, Now Teach encourages experienced people to step into the classroom to help plu…
 
Dame Angela Eagle has been the Labour MP for Wallasey in the Wirral since 1992. When her sister Maria was elected as Labour MP for Liverpool Garston five years later they became the first twins to sit together in Parliament in modern times, and later they became the first twins to be Ministers of State in the same government. Angela held a variety …
 
Before the World Health Organisation declared the outbreak of SARS-CoV-2 a pandemic, scientists Professor Sarah Gilbert and Dr Catherine Green had already started developing a vaccine against the virus which would go on to bring the world to a standstill. Their book, Vaxxers reveals the story behind the Oxford AstraZeneca jab, one of the greatest a…
 
The rise of women’s cricket is one of the biggest sporting stories in modern Britain – but behind it is nearly 700 years of history. That is one of many surprises revealed by Rafaelle Nicholson, a leading authority on women and sport, in her book Ladies And Lords: A History Of Women’s Cricket In Britain. She is the latest guest of Peter Oborne and …
 
Lingard Goulding kept wicket superbly in three continents over eight decades. He also found much else to do with his life, as an industrialist, a master of early computing, an author, a Formula 5000 motor racing driver and most importantly an inspiring head master and cricket coach, mentor and recorder. He shares highlights of an astonishing portfo…
 
Professor André Odendaal has made it his life’s work to tell his native South Africa its true cricket history. He has restored to memory the achievements of thousands of black, mixed-race and Asian-origin players deliberately suppressed to serve the cause of white supremacy. Besides giving back to South Africa its cricketing past he shares responsi…
 
Cricket has always been rich in statistics, but lately they have deepened and multiplied. Cricket’s new professional data analysts can access the detailed results of every single ball bowled in major cricket matches for over twenty years and use them to influence team selections, tactics and onfield decisions. This has alarmed many critics, who say…
 
It is an almost unnoticed revolution in global cricket: New Zealand’s cricketers have completed a journey from amateur whipping-boys to worldbeaters. They have secured an emphatic Test series victory over England while enjoying the luxury of six team changes to prepare for the ultimate prize of the World Test Championship. David Leggat, former chie…
 
For about fifteen years no England Test match seemed complete without the golden notes of Billy Cooper, the professional trumpeter who accompanied the Barmy Army. It made him the best-known musician in the cricket world since the celebrated pianist Don Bradman. He shares his memories of matching music to the many moods of cricket with Peter Oborne …
 
Timothy Abraham and James Coyne are co-editors of the perennially fascinating and expanding section of Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack on cricket around the world. Together they completed a long-cherished project, a personal odyssey into Latin American cricket, which took them from Mexico to the southernmost tip of Chile. They have just published an un…
 
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