16 episodes

In 1994, Howard Sounes began investigating a case of serial murder in an English cathedral city. A married couple, Fred and Rose West, had killed at least twelve women and girls, including their own daughter. They cut their victims up and buried the remains of nine bodies under their house at 25 Cromwell Street, Gloucester, where the Wests continued to live undetected... for decades. 
Uncovering their secrets as a journalist and author, researching his classic crime book Fred & Rose, Howard recorded his enquiries and interviews on cassette tape. Twenty-five years on, Howard revisits these previously unheard tapes. He also speaks to new witnesses, as he reveals the full story of the Wests, with new insights, in this compelling 12-part podcast series from Somethin’ Else. 
Fred & Rose by Howard Sounes is available now on Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com

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Unheard: The Fred and Rose West Tapes Somethin' Else

    • True Crime
    • 4.1 • 825 Ratings

In 1994, Howard Sounes began investigating a case of serial murder in an English cathedral city. A married couple, Fred and Rose West, had killed at least twelve women and girls, including their own daughter. They cut their victims up and buried the remains of nine bodies under their house at 25 Cromwell Street, Gloucester, where the Wests continued to live undetected... for decades. 
Uncovering their secrets as a journalist and author, researching his classic crime book Fred & Rose, Howard recorded his enquiries and interviews on cassette tape. Twenty-five years on, Howard revisits these previously unheard tapes. He also speaks to new witnesses, as he reveals the full story of the Wests, with new insights, in this compelling 12-part podcast series from Somethin’ Else. 
Fred & Rose by Howard Sounes is available now on Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com

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    Introducing... Power: The Maxwells

    Introducing... Power: The Maxwells

    Everyone’s heard of Ghislaine Maxwell (Jeffrey Epstein’s alleged partner in crime). But there’s a shadowy figure who hangs above her who you likely don’t know: her father, media tycoon Robert Maxwell. His rise from nothing to fall… from the deck of his super yacht under mysterious circumstances is straight out of a crime novel. His favorite daughter Ghislaine’s theory: her father was murdered. From Somethin’ Else, makers of ‘The Immaculate Deception’ and ‘The Faultline: Bush, Blair & Iraq’, hosted by Investigative journalist Tara Palmeri, ‘Power: The Maxwells’ is a seven part series on the incredible true story of a media mogul whose legacy is still being felt today.
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    • 8 min
    Introducing... The Fault Line: Bush, Blair and Iraq

    Introducing... The Fault Line: Bush, Blair and Iraq

    Hi Unheard fans, we've made a show we think you'll like....
    On September 11th 2001, as he faced incalculable losses after the terrorist attacks that day, President George W Bush made a call to his greatest international ally: British Prime Minister Tony Blair. 18 months later, Bush and Blair led a coalition into a war that went horribly wrong. David Dimbleby, one of the BBC’s best known news hosts and reporters, takes us back to those crucial 18 months. Talking to prime ministers, politicians, spies and weapons inspectors he asks how and why we came to invade Iraq. And as we experience an era of lies and mistrust - did the events of 17 years ago set the stage for the world we live in now?
    This is a Somethin' Else production. 

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    • 5 min
    Introducing... The Immaculate Deception!

    Introducing... The Immaculate Deception!

    Hi Unheard fans, we've made a show we think you'll like....
    Fertility doctor Jan Karbaat was renowned for getting amazing results. Women who were desperate for children would visit him at his Rotterdam clinic and leave pregnant. But when the clinic closed, rumours began about the methods Karbaat used to achieve his success. The children conceived at the clinic - the Karbaat Kids - began asking difficult questions about what happened to their mothers. 
    What happened in Dr Karbaat’s clinic? From Somethin’ Else, The Immaculate Deception is a story about a doctor who was determined to create life - by any means possible. Reported and hosted by Jenny Kleeman.
    This is a Somethin' Else Production.

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    • 4 min
    12: The Aftermath

    12: The Aftermath

    In October 1996, Fred and Rose West’s house, 25 Cromwell Street is knocked down by Gloucester City Council. In the years since, what happened to the Wests and to the families of the victims caught up in the murder enquiry? Howard reflects on the legacy of Cromwell Street.
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    • 35 min
    11: Sister

    11: Sister

    Christmas 1973. Marian Partington’s younger sister, Lucy, was a university student at home for the holidays. She was visiting a friend for the evening and was meant to catch the bus home. But she never returned. 21 years later, Lucy’s body was among the nine uncovered from 25 Cromwell Street. How did Marian confront the horror of what happened to her sister? She reveals a long and difficult process that led her towards forgiveness for the Wests. 
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    • 33 min
    10: The Trial

    10: The Trial

    October 1995. With Fred West dead, Rose West stands accused of ten murders amid huge media attention. Howard speaks with Sasha Wass, part of the legal team defending Rose. Intense media scrutiny threatens the chance of a fair trial. Could Rose walk free?
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    • 46 min

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5
825 Ratings

825 Ratings

Evilgrapefruit ,

Unpleasant journalism

It is an interesting podcast but if feels more like a recounting of really unpleasant journalism than anything else. I thought it was really awful the way he sort of forced his way in to rose west’s mum’s house by demanding she get him a drink of water because he had driven so far. Or befriending the mother of a woman who didn’t want to talk in order to get her contact details from the mother. Did they all know they were being recorded? If you ever find yourself involved in something newsworthy, don’t give these people an inch.

J.L.C.W ,

Well presented

Whilst very unsettling to listen to. I found it incredibly interesting. Not all that long ago how young women and girls could disappear off the face of the earth and no one thought to be concerned or to look for them. If only all the red flags had been together.
The episode “The Sister “ was hugely moving and a real lesson in humanity.

kingrossii ,

Highly irritating and immoral journalist

There are stars on this review because of the fact Rose's mum was so lovely to listen to - there were some good interviews with people from those days. However, the journalist was immorally doing whatever he needed do to get these discussions, putting words in mouths and pushing his agenda. At the end of episode 5 (SPOILER) Daisy, Rose's mum, asks how they killed them.. he does respectfully decline to go into detail, saying it's unhelpful. But when she asks if she might have been led by Fred, he tells her that 'no she enjoyed it...' It didn't need to be so plainly put to a mum who was, to me, struggling to comprehend that someone she raised could do something as bad as she had.

The worst thing in this podcast is how, when playing any tapes back, he repeats every bloody thing they say - fine if it's inaudible (can be quite helpful at that point), but completely unnecessary when the audio is clear - such as when interviewing Rose's mum. It's almost word-for-word repeated. So then I wonder 'where is his OWN take on things' - it's effectively a compilation of accounts of various contacts/witnesses which simply highlight what happened, but delves no deeper.

It's a good collection of interviews for sure - and time has clearly been spent hounding interviewees for a chat. But having already done that, there could have been much better analysis than simply to repeat what was said.

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