The Eddie Mair Interview

The Eddie Mair Interview

United Kingdom

Eddie Mair speaks at length to people with interesting things to say, for Radio 4's PM.

Episodes

Why I campaign against abortions  

Abortion in the United States continues to spark fierce debate and cause division, ever since the Supreme Court made it legal in 1973 following the Roe v Wade case. Individual states still have a lot of power to influence the availability of abortions and in almost every state there are campaigns and protests for and against. In our two-part podcast we hear from people on either side of the debate. For part one we heard from Dr Willie Parker, who provides abortion services in Georgia and Alabama. In part two Eddie speaks to Esther Ripplinger, who campaigns against abortions in her home state of Washington, not least because of her own experience of having one. (Photo: Esther Ripplinger. Credit: Esther Ripplinger)

From fundamentalist Christian to abortion provider  

Abortion in the United States continues to spark fierce debate and cause division, ever since the Supreme Court made it legal in 1973 following the Roe v Wade case. Individual states still have a lot of power to influence the availability of abortions and in almost every state there are campaigns and protests for and against. In our two-part podcast we hear from people on either side of the debate. For part one we speak to Dr Willie Parker, who was raised in a fundamentalist Christian family in Alabama. He now exclusively provides abortion services to women in his home state and neighbouring Georgia, both of which have more restrictive laws on abortion. (Photo: Dr Willie Parker. Credit: Getty Images)

Stroud candidates 16 year battle  

For 16 years, David Drew and Neil Carmichael have campaigned against each other to be MP for Stroud. The constituency in Gloucestershire is known as a bell-weather because it often goes the same way as the national result. In 1997 David won for Labour, and Tony Blair moved into No.10. The next general election in 2001 saw Neil enter the race but David held on, as did the Labour government. The same happened in 2005. Then in 2010 Neil beat David and the Conservatives formed a coalition government with the Lib Dems. Neil's second success in 2015 was mirrored by the Conservatives, but in 2017 David Drew retook the parliamentary seat. Eddie Mair speaks to the pair about what it is like going up against the same person for so many years. (Photo: David Drew (l) and Neil Carmichael (r). Credit: BBC)

'I was just told I had to lose my hair'  

For six months on PM, we heard from Steve Hewlett every Monday as he chronicled his experience of oesophageal cancer. In his very first conversation, last September, he introduced us to the "cold cap". Many listeners told us they also experienced the "cold cap", but they're not available in every part of the UK. "Cold caps" or "scalp cooling" can prevent or lessen hair loss which occurs during chemotherapy. Claire McQuillan is having chemotherapy for a second time. She tells Eddie Mair she can’t have "cold cap" treatment in Northern Ireland. The Health and Social Care Board (HSCNI) there says the evidence on the clinical and cost effectiveness of the caps is not sufficient for them to be routinely commissioned. (Photo courtesy of the McQuillan family)

'People don't want to associate with the chemsex barrister'  

This week in our podcast, Eddie Mair speaks to Henry Hendron. He was very much a rising star, a barrister in London with some high profile clients and media coverage to go with it. He represented the Conservative MP Nigel Evans when he was cleared of rape in 2014. Some people thought Henry Hendron himself had a bright political future. But things changed for him in 2015 when his 18-year-old boyfriend Miguel Jimenez died after taking chemsex drugs. Mr Hendron was arrested and admitted possessing the drugs that killed his boyfriend. The Bar Standards Board suspended him from practicing, but in May said he could return to the bar after three years. (Photo: Miguel Jimenez (l) and Henry Hendron (r). Credit: Henry Hendron)

I didn't know my boyfriend was an undercover officer  

In 2011 it was revealed that a number of police officers who were working undercover among environmental activists in the 1990s had sexual relationships with some of the people they were investigating. "Jessica", had a relationship with an undercover police officer in the 90s. She only found out this year the full details of what really happened. (Photo: The shadow of a man. Credit: Getty Images)

Steve Hewlett's sons on moving forward  

For six months on PM, Steve Hewlett chronicled his experience of living with oesophageal cancer. Sadly in February 2017 Steve died. His sons Freddie, Billy and Bertie join Eddie Mair to talk about a scholarship created in their father's name, the impact Steve's conversations with PM had, and moving forward. (Photo: Freddie and Billy. Credit: BBC)

'I feel angry that families are going through that enormous stress'  

The hours and days after the Manchester Arena attack were especially long for some families. They were wondering whether their loved ones were dead or alive. Some appealed on radio and TV for any information. A mother who understands what they were going through is Sarah Jenkins. She has been campaigning to improve the way such information is handled, after her own experience of waiting to find out about her daughter Emily. The 24 year old was among those killed in London on July 7, 2005. She was travelling on the southbound Piccadilly line train from Kings Cross when the bomb went off 500 yards into her journey.

'Why I kept my wife's body after her death'  

A man has revealed how he slept in the same room as his wife's body for six days after she died. Wendy Davison, 50, died at home in Derby last month after a 10-year battle with cervical cancer. Russell Davison, who has been left "heartbroken", said he did not want her body to go to a mortuary and he wanted to challenge attitudes towards dying. Mr Davison explains to Eddie Mair his family's unusual perspective on death. (Image:Wendy and Russell Davison. Credit: Paul Clark)

'My purpose in life was just playing the piano'  

Pianist Antimo Magnotta was performing on-board the Costa Concordia cruise ship when it ran aground off the coast of Italy on 13 January 2012. He talks to Eddie Mair about his start in music and how his life changed after the disaster which killed 32 people. (Photo: Antimo Magnotta. Credit: BBC)

My unknown sister, who was an inspiration  

Olympic gold medalist, Dominique Moceanu, and professional acrobat Jennifer Bricker grew up with separate families before finding out they were biological sisters. Speaking to them both, Eddie Mair heard of the struggles Jennifer went through to contact Dominique "it was a 4 year journey...but meeting my biological family consumed every bit of my life." Dominique spoke about the shock and joy she experienced when she discovered she had a sister. (Photo montage: Jennifer Bricker (L) doing a handstand and Dominique Moceanu (R) competing in the 1996 Olympic Games Credit: Jennifer Bricker, image courtesy of Baker Publishing Group; Dominique Moceanu, Getty Images)

Dementia at 47  

Dianne was diagnosed with dementia at 47 years old. She talks to Eddie Mair about her journey from noticing changes in her memory, to her involvement in the Brent Peer Support project. (Photo: Dianne. Credit: Peer Support)

'Every year my officers recover 150 bodies from the desert'  

Throughout his campaign to be President Donald Trump promised to build a wall between the United States and Mexico. Upon taking office he vowed to keep the promise. Someone who knows from personal experience what it's like to patrol that southern border is Mark Napier, who is the Sheriff of Pima County in Arizona. As he explained to Eddie Mair one of the biggest challenges he and his team face is the topography of the area and the very hot climate. "Every year 150 bodies are recovered in the desert of people who have tried to come across the border, but have died because of the environmental conditions".

Steve Hewlett's Doctor describes caring for him  

Dr Naureen Starling is a Consultant Medical Oncologist at The Royal Marsden hospital in London, specialising in the treatment of gastrointestinal cancers. She is better known to listeners as Steve Hewlett's doctor. She explained to Eddie Mair that one thing she has learnt whilst treating Steve was that clear communication was vital. "I think it's often good for me and my colleagues just to step back and think actually am I communicating this clearly in a way the patient can understand."

Steve Hewlett: Our tribute  

In the middle of September last year, Steve Hewlett, the presenter of Radio Four's The Media Show was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer. He thought it might be of interest to PM listeners to detail his treatment on air. Sadly Steve has died. Here is our tribute to Steve Hewlett, a collection of moments from the times he generously spent talking to us about his illness.

What really happened to Scott Johnson?  

The death of a family member is one of the most traumatic things a person can experience. For Steve Johnson, his brother Scott's death almost 30 years ago is still a source of pain. Scott Johnson was outwardly happy, about to finish a PhD and he was in a long term relationship. Police said his death was suicide. But now, thanks to Steve, doubt has been cast on not only what the police said but what they did in response to Scott's death, and many others. (Photo: Steve Johnson and his brother Scott (right). Courtesy of Steve Johnson)

Steve Hewlett: How do you live every day as if it's your last?  

In 2016 Steve Hewlett, presenter of Radio 4's The Media Show, was diagnosed as having cancer of the oesophagus, and has been telling us about his treatment. Steve has had to continue his stay in the Royal Marsden Hospital in London, so Eddie Mair went to visit him again. Last week, he told us how some of his options were no longer there. No more drugs trials, no more chemo: his liver was in a state that would not allow any of that. During their conversation this week, Steve told Eddie about the options for palliative care and what living every day as if it's your last, means to him.

Steve Hewlett: I was told I have weeks, possibly months..."  

In 2016 Steve Hewlett, presenter of Radio 4's The Media Show, was diagnosed as having cancer of the oesophagus, and has been telling us about his treatment. Steve has had to continue his stay in the Royal Marsden Hospital in London, so Eddie Mair went to visit him again. During their conversation, Steve told Eddie that his consultant had said his liver would not be able to handle any more treatments and that the outlook in the long term was not good. On a happier note, he and his partner Rachel decided to get married.

Steve Hewlett says he's continuing with the trial, despite his liver 'misbehaving'  

In 2016 Steve Hewlett, presenter of Radio 4's The Media Show, was diagnosed as having cancer of the oesophagus, and has been telling us about his treatment. This week Steve had to stay in London's Royal Marsden Hospital, so Eddie Mair went to visit him. During their conversation, Steve told Eddie that because his liver is "misbehaving", and they are unsure if the new drug is working, he could end up with his "liver being so damaged it's no longer capable of dealing with any further treatment". Despite that, he's decided to continue with the drugs trial.

Steve Hewlett: 'All I could do was cry, I was so overwhelmed'  

In 2016 Steve Hewlett, presenter of Radio 4's The Media Show, was diagnosed as having cancer of the oesophagus, and has been telling us about his treatment. In this podcast he tells Eddie Mair what happened when he heard that he had finally been accepted on the drugs trial, "as soon as I put the phone down, all I could do was cry, I was so overwhelmed by it."

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