26 episodes

Can early events shape future success? Times’ columnists, Rachel Sylvester and Alice Thomson talk to outstanding people about how moments in their early lives informed their identities, their careers and their drive to succeed.

Past Imperfect The Times

    • Society & Culture
    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

Can early events shape future success? Times’ columnists, Rachel Sylvester and Alice Thomson talk to outstanding people about how moments in their early lives informed their identities, their careers and their drive to succeed.

    Mary Portas

    Mary Portas

    Mary Portas, aka Mary Queen of Shops, is a retail consultant, broadcaster and was chosen to lead a review into the future of Britain's high streets by the then Prime Minister David Cameron. She speaks candidly to Rachel and Alice about the impact that the sudden deaths of both of her parents had on her as a teenager, and what it meant to be part of one of the first gay couples to legally marry in the UK.


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    Stonewall: www.stonewall.org.uk
    Action for Children: www.actionforchildren.org.uk
    Child Berevement UK: www.childbereavementuk.org


    Producer: Ben Mitchell
     
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    • 49 min
    Eddie Marsan

    Eddie Marsan

    Eddie Marsan is one of the UK's best character actors; appearing in films such as Sherlock Holmes, Tyrannosaur and Deadpool 2. He joins Rachel and Alice from his home and opens up about a childhood surrounded by racist, homophobic and domestic violence, coming to terms with his own spirituality, and fighting an internal class war.


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    Reclaim: www.reclaim.org.uk
    Acting for Others: www.hactingforothers.co.uk
    Stand Against Racism & Inequality: www.sariweb.org.uk


    Producer: Ben Mitchell
     
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    • 48 min
    Damon Buffini

    Damon Buffini

    Sir Damon Buffini is a businessman and Chairman of the National Theatre, Royal Anniversary Trust and the Ryder Cup Committee. Rachel and Alice join him at his home to talk about overcoming the racism he faced at University, chairing the government's Cultural Recovery Fund, and how the work ethic instilled in him as a child drove him to become the most powerful black man in Britain.


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    Runnymede: www.runnymedetrust.org
    The Prince’s Trust: www.princes-trust.org.uk
    Buffini Chao Foundation: www.buffinichao.com


    Producer: Ben Mitchell
     
    See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    • 48 min
    Ed Balls

    Ed Balls

    Ed Balls is a broadcaster, former Labour Politician and Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer and the winner of Celebrity Best Home Cook 2021. He talks openly to Rachel and Alice about his time in government, how he overcame the bullying he faced as a child and why he kept his lifelong stammer a secret.


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    Bullies Out: www.bulliesout.com
    Young Minds: www.youngminds.org.uk
    The Brittish Stammering Associtation: www.stamma.org


    Producer: Ben Mitchell
     
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    • 49 min
    Kwame Kwei-Armah

    Kwame Kwei-Armah

    Kwame Kwei-Armah OBE is an actor, playwright and Artistic Director of the Young Vic Theatre. He joins Rachel and Alice to discuss the impact the TV series Roots had on his identity, the racial violence he witnessed as a child in 80's London and how his career has taken him from an ambulance driver in Casualty to leading one of the UK's biggest theatres.


    Get The Times free for a month: thetimes.co.uk/pastimperfect


    Stop Hate UK: www.stophateuk.org
    Runnymede: www.runnymedetrust.org
    Theatre's Trust: www.theatrestrust.org.uk


    Producer: Ben Mitchell
     
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    • 49 min
    Esther McVey

    Esther McVey

    Esther McVey MP is the former Minister of State for Housing has been the Conservative Member of Parliament for Tatton since 2017. She joins Rachel and Alice from her office in Westminster to reveal how her life began in the care of Barnardo's, before being returned to her parents and going on to become children's tv presenter and a politician.


    Get The Times free for a month: thetimes.co.uk/pastimperfect


    If Chloe Can: ifchloecan.org.uk
    Barnardo's: www.barnardos.org.uk
    The Children's Society: www.childrenssociety.org.uk


    Producer: Ben Mitchell
     
    See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    • 49 min

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