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Biographical series in which guests choose someone who has inspired their lives.

Great Lives BBC Radio 4

    • Maatschappij en cultuur
    • 4,9 • 18 beoordelingen

Biographical series in which guests choose someone who has inspired their lives.

    Lady Rachel MacRobert, chosen by Hayaatun Sillem

    Lady Rachel MacRobert, chosen by Hayaatun Sillem

    Lady Rachel MacRobert was born Rachel Workman in Massachusetts in 1884. She was sent to study in the UK where she developed a passion for geology, and attended the Annual General Meeting of the Royal Geological Society despite women not being allowed. She became Lady Rachel MacRobert through marriage to Alexander MacRobert in 1911. He was thirty years her senior and a successful businessman. When he was knighted Lady MacRobert refused to attend the ceremony saying "I will bow to no man." They had three sons who all died whilst flying, two of whom in active service. In response Lady MacRobert paid for a plane, 'MacRobert's Reply' to be commissioned in their memory. She ran her husband's businesses in India after his death and bred cattle on the family estate in Aberdeenshire.
    Choosing Lady Rachel MacRobert is the Chief Executive of the Royal Academy of Engineering, Dr Hayaatun Sillem. When Hayaatun discovered that the MacRobert Award for engineering was named after a woman she began looking into her life and discovered an independent visionary who was once described as "charmingly volcanic." But it's her response to the loss of her three sons which Hayaatun admires most, praising its defiance and also how it seized agency from a situation that could have easily made her a victim. Gordon Masterton from Edinburgh University and Trustee of The MacRobert Trust joins the discussion and says after a recent speech to launch an AI version of Lady MacRobert young women came up to him and said "Who would have thought she was such a badass."
    Presenter: Matthew Parris
    Produced by Toby Field for BBC Studios Audio

    • 27 min.
    Queen Emma

    Queen Emma

    Professor Alice Roberts, best known as the presenter of Digging for Britain, picks the wife of two English kings and the mother of two English kings. Queen Emma was born in Normandy and came to England as a diplomatic peaceweaver when she married Aethelred in 1002. Somehow she survived the invasion of the Danes under Swein Forkbeard and married his son, King Canute after Aethelred's death. Together with help from Professor Janina Ramirez - author of Femina - and Patricia Bracewell who has written a trilogy of historical novels based on Emma's life, Alice pieces together an extraordinary life, the richest woman in England, aunt of William the Conqueror, mother of Edward the Confessor.
    Alice Roberts is Professor of Public Engagement in Science at Birmingham University and the author of Crypt: Life, Death and Disease in the Middle Ages and Beyond
    Programme also includes recorded audio of Professor Pauline Stafford, author of Gendering the Middle Ages
    The producer in Bristol is Miles Warde

    • 27 min.
    James Dyson on Frank Whittle

    James Dyson on Frank Whittle

    Frank Whittle’s fascination with aeroplanes started as a nine-year-old boy when he was nearly decapitated by one that was taking off from a local common in Coventry where he grew up. From that moment he set his sights on becoming a pilot, and joined the RAF in 1923. A few years later, aged just 21, he came up with an idea for powering aircraft so that they could fly much further and faster than the existing propeller planes. Despite a dearth of support from the Air Ministry, he doggedly pursued his vision of a turbojet engine and the RAF’s first fighter jet entered service towards the end of the Second World War, in 1944. His invention not only revolutionised air combat, but also international travel.
    The inventor and entrepreneur James Dyson finds his story so inspiring that he has collected some of Whittle’s inventions, including an original working jet engine from 1943. He finds it amazing that Whittle got it right first time, which inventors almost never do. James Dyson is joined in the studio by Frank Whittle’s son, Ian Whittle, who is also a pilot.
    Presenter: Matthew Parris
    Producer: Beth McLeod for BBC Studios Audio

    • 27 min.
    Katherine Rundell on E Nesbit

    Katherine Rundell on E Nesbit

    Bestselling children's author Katherine Rundell discusses the extraordinary life of E Nesbit who wrote The Railway Children and Five Children And It.
    Katherine praises her “bold unwillingness to speak down to children” and reflects that “she never seemed to forget what it was like to be a child”. E, or Edith, Nesbit’s conjuring of mythical beasts like the Phoenix and the sand fairy the Psammead was a particular inspiration to Katherine Rundell who says "you can really believe they are flesh and blood”. Edith Nesbit has also influenced the work of Jacqueline Wilson and JK Rowling who have both praised this trailblazing writer.
    She had a particularly colourful private life and a very open marriage. She flouted the social conventions of the time. She was married when seven months pregnant. Her husband had children outside of their relationship and Edith then raised them as her own. She was a feminist but didn't believe in Votes for Women. She co-founded the Fabian Society and kept company with the likes of George Bernard Shaw and Noel Coward.
    Katherine Rundell is joined by Elisabeth Galvin who has written a biography of E Nesbit. The programme features an excerpt from The Phoenix And The Carpet by E Nesbit as well as clips from the 1970 film of The Railway Children distributed by EMI films and the 1991 BBC television adaptation of Five Children And It.
    Presenter: Matthew Parris
    Producer: Robin Markwell

    • 27 min.
    Antoni Gaudi

    Antoni Gaudi

    Baroness Ros Altmann, a Conservative peer and former pensions minister, was “blown away” by the architecture of Antoni Gaudi on a trip to Barcelona in the 1990s. She’s been back several times and her wonder at Gaudi’s use of colour and natural shapes has not faded. She wants to find out more about the conservative, religious man who created such exuberant and flamboyant work. Gaudi biographer Gijs Van Hensbergen joins Ros and host Matthew Parris to explore Gaudi’s childhood, his personal life and how his Catholicism and love of Catalan nature informed his work.
    Producer: Paul Martin for BBC Studios Audio.

    • 27 min.
    Sir Bruce Forsyth

    Sir Bruce Forsyth

    The political writer and broadcaster Steve Richards remembers the 1970s as a “dark decade.” But one shining light for the teenage Steve was Saturday evening telly, especially the Generation Game on BBC One. He was captivated by the performance of the show’s host, Bruce Forsyth. Brucie was in his pomp, with the programme getting audiences of up to 19 million. Steve thought his performances were comedic genius, especially his interaction with contestants. And he came to appreciate Sir Bruce’s other talents too, like his singing and dancing abilities.
    As well as the Generation Game, his seven-decade career took in Sunday Night at The London Palladium, one-man stage shows, Play Your Cards Right and Strictly Come Dancing. Indeed, it has been said that the story of Sir Bruce Forsyth is the story of modern entertainment television in Britain.
    That’s why Steve has nominated Sir Bruce as a Great Life. And joining him and host Matthew Parris to discuss Brucie’s life and career are his widow Lady Forsyth and his long-time manager Ian Wilson.
    Producer: Paul Martin for BBC Studios Audio

    • 27 min.

Klantrecensies

4,9 van 5
18 beoordelingen

18 beoordelingen

Mhughfhg ,

Fabulous podcast!

Just long enough and so good to listen to! Very respectful and informative! Love to listen to them! Marianne (The Netherlands)

monica.almere ,

Lovely.

I live this programme.

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