Desert Island Discs

Desert Island Discs

By BBC Radio 4

Eight tracks, a book and a luxury: what would you take to a desert island? Guests share the soundtrack of their lives.


Classic Desert Island Discs - Samantha Morton

Lauren Laverne talks to the actor and director Samantha Morton in a programme first broadcast in 2020.
19/05/2444m 21s

Classic Desert Island Discs - Keith Richards

Kirsty Young talks to the musician and Rolling Stones member Keith Richards in a programme first broadcast in 2015.
11/05/2434m 11s

Classic Desert Island Discs - Annie Nightingale

Lauren Laverne talks to the broadcaster Annie Nightingale in a programme first broadcast in 2020. Annie Nightingale died in January 2024 at the age of 83.
05/05/2435m 0s

Professor Tim Spector, scientist

Tim Spector is Professor of Genetic Epidemiology and Head of the Department of Twin Research at King’s College London. He was one of the co-founders of the ZOE Covid Symptom study, which for which he was awarded an OBE. He has also written best-selling books about the relationship between what we eat and our health and well-being. Tim was born in London in 1958 into a medical family. His mother was a physiotherapist and his father was an eminent pathologist, although Tim initially resisted his father’s encouragement to follow him into medicine. Once qualified, Tim specialised in rheumatology before switching to epidemiology. In 1992, he set up a large-scale research study of twins which now has more than 15,000 identical and non-identical twins taking part.After a health scare in 2011, Tim became more interested in how we can influence the microbes in our gut to help us stay well. He has published several books on the science of eating well and is a pioneer in personalised food nutrition.Tim lives in London with his wife, who is also a doctor. DISC ONE: Life on Mars - David Bowie DISC TWO: Prokofiev: Romeo and Juliet, Op. 64 / Act 1 - 13. Dance Of The Knights Composed by Sergei Prokofiev and performed by Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Vladimir Ashkenazy DISC THREE: Paint it, Black - The Rolling Stones DISC FOUR: Dreams - Fleetwood Mac DISC FIVE: Puttin’ on the Ritz - Gene Wilder playing Dr Frankenstein, Peter Boyle as The Monster and Norbert Schiller as the announcer. Music conducted by John Morris from Young Frankenstein (Original Soundtrack) DISC SIX: All of Me (live) - Louis Armstrong DISC SEVEN: That’s Entertainment - The Jam DISC EIGHT: In the Ghetto - Elvis Presley BOOK CHOICE: A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens LUXURY ITEM: A fermenting set CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: All of Me (live) - Louis Armstrong Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
27/04/2449m 17s

Professor Alice Roberts, scientist and broadcaster

Professor Alice Roberts is one of the most popular science communicators in Britain today. As the presenter of the BBC archaeology programme Digging for Britain, she reveals the underground mysteries of our collective past to millions of viewers. Alice was born in Bristol and developed an interest in science from an early age – examining insects under her microscope in order to draw them and digging up bits of pottery in her parents’ vegetable patch. At the age of eight she was entranced as she watched a live feed which showed researchers at Bristol University unwrapping an Egyptian Mummy. Alice studied medicine in Cardiff and worked as a house officer doing paediatric surgery and then taught anatomy to students at Bristol University. She followed this up with a PhD in paleopathology, the study of disease in old bones, which led to her first television appearance as a bone expert on the Channel 4 series Time Team. Alice has written several books that explore human evolution and history and in 2012 she was appointed the first Professor of Public Engagement in Science at the University of Birmingham. DISC ONE: Monkey Gone to Heaven - Pixies DISC TWO: Temple of Love - Sisters of Mercy DISC THREE: Apotheosis - Austin Wintory DISC FOUR: Cherub Rock (2011 Remaster) - The Smashing Pumpkins DISC FIVE: Times Like These (BBC Radio 1 Stay Home Live Lounge) - Live Lounge Allstars DISC SIX: Sugar - System Of A Down DISC SEVEN: Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence. Composed by Ryuichi Sakomoto and performed by Phoebe Stevens DISC EIGHT: Coins for the Eyes - Johnny Flynn & Robert Macfarlane BOOK CHOICE: Middlemarch by George Eliot LUXURY ITEM: A kayak CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence. Composed by Ryuichi Sakomoto and performed by Phoebe StevensPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
21/04/2436m 56s

Jenny Sealey, theatre director

Jenny Sealey has been the artistic director of Graeae Theatre Company since 1997: Graeae is a deaf and disabled-led company and a leader and innovator in accessible theatre. Jenny has directed opera as well as plays, and was the co-director of the 2012 Paralympic opening ceremony. Jenny was born in Nottingham in 1963, the eldest of four sisters. She lost her hearing at the age of seven following a fall at school in which she banged her head. At that time, deaf children were not encouraged to use British Sign Language, and so she taught herself to lip read, and stayed in a mainstream school, although she often found it challenging. She also continued to take ballet lessons, helped by an inspirational teacher who encouraged her to follow the form and movements of the dancer in front of her. She went on to study dance and choreography at Middlesex Polytechnic.After graduation, Jenny worked as an actor before becoming the artistic director of Graeae. In 2022 she was awarded an OBE for services to disability arts. Most recently she returned to acting and toured the UK with Self Raising, her one-woman autobiographical play. Jenny lives in London with her son and partner. DISC ONE: Handel: Messiah, HWV 56, Pt. 2: No. 44, Chorus. Hallelujah, for the Lord God Omnipotent Reigneth. Composed by George Frideric Handel and performed by The Sixteen Choir, conducted by Harry Christophers DISC TWO: Yesterday - The Beatles DISC THREE: Teenage Kicks - The Undertones DISC FOUR: The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face - Roberta Flack DISC FIVE: Because The Night - Patti Smith Group DISC SIX: Spasticus Autisticus – John Kelly and the cast of Reasons to be Cheerful DISC SEVEN: If It Can't Be Right Then It Must Be Wrong – John Kelly and the cast of Graeae’s stage production of Reasons To Be Cheerful DISC EIGHT: Days – Kirsty MacCollBOOK CHOICE: The Complete Works of Armistead Maupin LUXURY ITEM: A photography kit CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Handel: Messiah, HWV 56, Pt. 2: No. 44, Chorus. Hallelujah, for the Lord God Omnipotent Reigneth. Composed by George Frideric Handel and performed by The Sixteen Choir, conducted by Harry Christophers Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
13/04/2434m 47s

James Graham, playwright

James Graham is an award-winning dramatist whose plays include This House, Ink and Dear England starring Joseph Fiennes as the England football manager Gareth Southgate. His acclaimed television productions include Sherwood and Quiz, based on the story of the so-called coughing Major Charles Ingram who was found guilty of cheating on the game show Who Wants to be a Millionaire? James was born in Kirkby-in-Ashfield in Nottinghamshire in 1982. He was a shy boy who was encouraged to perform in school plays by his teachers. He went on to study drama at Hull University where he wrote his first play Coal Not Dole! He took the play to the Edinburgh fringe and the reception it received from audiences encouraged him to carry on writing.After graduating he worked as a stage doorkeeper at the Theatre Royal in Nottingham where one of his personal highlights was looking after Danny La Rue, the star of the Christmas panto. His first London premiere came in 2005 at the Finborough Theatre in London with Albert’s Boy, which explored the arguments for and against nuclear weapons. In 2020 James was awarded an OBE for services to drama and young people in British theatre. DISC ONE: Disco 2000 - Pulp DISC TWO: Chatanooga Choo Choo - Glenn Miller DISC THREE: Up In Arms - Foo Fighters DISC FOUR: Syncopes - Gabriel Yared DISC FIVE: Your Disco Needs You - Kylie Minogue DISC SIX: Where Are We Now? - David Bowie DISC SEVEN: If You Came To See Me Cry - Katie Brayben (from Tammy Faye: The Musical) DISC EIGHT: Going To A Town - Rufus Wainwright BOOK CHOICE: A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking LUXURY ITEM: A keg of Single Malt Scotch Whisky CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Where Are We Now? - David Bowie Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
07/04/2450m 35s

Rita Rae, Lady Rae, lawyer and judge

The Honourable Lady Rita Rae is a lawyer and judge, and the current Rector of the University of Glasgow. Early in her career she was a rare woman in the heavily male-dominated legal world. She went on to work on many high profile criminal cases over five decades as a solicitor, an advocate and subsequently a judge in Scotland’s Supreme Court.Rita grew up in Plains, Airdrie, to the east of Glasgow. She was a shy child but earned the nickname ‘The Last Word’ from her parents because of her need to argue her case when she felt something wasn’t right. She was inspired to become a lawyer by her maternal grandfather, a noted advocate and anti-fascist from Naples.Her parents met in a munitions factory in Italy where her mother was working. Her father was a Scottish bomb disposal expert helping to dismantle munitions after the war. They married and moved to Scotland, but Rita and her brother were not accepted by her Scottish family because of their Catholicism. Rita became a solicitor in 1974, entering a world dominated by men. When told by a senior colleague that women were ‘emotionally unsuitable for court work’, she set about proving him wrong. She became a partner in her firm at the age of 27, and was called to the bar in 1982, one of just 13 female advocates in Scotland at the time. She was made a Sheriff in 1997 and a Judge of the Supreme Courts in 2014.In 2021 she was elected Rector of the University of Glasgow, the first female working rector in the university’s 570-year history.DISC ONE: Piano Concerto No. 2 in C Minor, Op. 18 - III. Allegro scherzando. Composed by Sergei Rachmaninoff, performed by Vladimir Ashkenazy (piano) and London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by André Previn DISC TWO: “Ah! Dite alla giovine” from Act 2 of La Traviata. Composed by Giuseppe Verdi, performed by Angela Gheorghiu (soprano), Leo Nucci (baritone) and Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, conducted by Sir Georg Solti DISC THREE: Mamma - Beniamino Gigli DISC FOUR: Aranjuez mon amour - Massimo Ranieri DISC FIVE: Cheap Flights - Fascinating Aïda DISC SIX: “The Flower Song” (“La fleur que tu m’avais jetee”), Carmen, Act II. Composed by Georges Bizet, performed by José Carreras (tenor) and Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, conducted by Jacques Delacôte DISC SEVEN: Ave Maria. Composed by Giulio Caccini (Arr. Brinums) and performed by Inessa Galante (Soprano), Latvian National Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Aleksandrs Vilumanis DISC EIGHT: Climb Ev’ry Mountain - Peggy WoodBOOK CHOICE: The Pursuit of Italy: A History of a Land, its Regions and their Peoples by David Gilmour LUXURY ITEM: A solar powered car CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Mamma - Beniamino Gigli Presenter Lauren Laverne Producers Paula McGinley and Tim Bano
31/03/2438m 15s

Sandy Powell, costume designer

Sandy Powell won her first Academy Award for dressing Joseph Fiennes and Gwyneth Paltrow in Shakespeare in Love, and has since won two more Oscars - along with a further dozen nominations - and three BAFTAs. Her credits range from Gangs of New York for Martin Scorsese to Mary Poppins Returns for Disney, and she's worked with many of the biggest current screen stars, including Leonardo di Caprio, Cate Blanchett and Al Pacino. Sandy was born in south London and completed an art foundation course at St Martin’s School of Art. In 1981 she got her first job designing costumes for the choreographer Lindsay Kemp’s show Nijinsky at La Scala in Milan. She later worked for the director Derek Jarman on his film Caravaggio and continued to collaborate with him until his death in 1994. She has also enjoyed long working relationships with Martin Scorsese and Todd Haynes. Sandy has won acclaim for her designs on films with historical settings, including The Wings of the Dove, The Young Victoria and The Favourite starring Olivia Colman, as well as the flamboyant glam rock world of Velvet Goldmine and the fairy-tale fantasy of Cinderella, starring Lily James. In 2011 she was awarded an OBE for services for the film industry and in 2023 she became the first costume designer to receive a BAFTA Fellowship. DISC ONE: Jeepster - T Rex DISC TWO: Adagietto, Symphony No. 5 in C-Sharp Minor. Composed by Gustav Mahler and performed by Orchestre de l'Académie de Santa Cécilia and conducted by Franco Mannino DISC THREE: Life on Mars? - David Bowie DISC FOUR: La Vie en Rose - Alan Dunn DISC FIVE: I’ll Never Fall in Love Again - Bobbi Gentry DISC SIX: Satellite of Love - Lou Reed DISC SEVEN: Where Love Lives (Come On In) - Alison Limerick DISC EIGHT: I Left My Heart in San Francisco - Tony BennettBOOK CHOICE: Josef Koudelka: Gypsies LUXURY ITEM: A lemon tree CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Life on Mars? - David BowiePresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
24/03/2436m 4s

Clive Oppenheimer, volcanologist

Clive Oppenheimer is a volcanologist, filmmaker and Professor of Volcanology at the University of Cambridge. His research has taken him on expeditions across the world, from Antarctica, where he discovered the camp of Captain Scott’s attempt to reach the South Pole, to Ethiopia where he was held at gunpoint by rebels. Clive was born in London, and fell in love with rocks and the stories they tell on visits to what is now the Natural History Museum. His mother survived the Blitz in London and his father escaped persecution by the Nazis in Germany in the 1930s. On a gap year trip to Indonesia, Clive saw his first volcanoes and realised both their natural power and their significance in human lives. He studied at the University of Cambridge, and completed a PhD at the Open University.He has taken part in and led expeditions to volcanoes all over the world, including Indonesia, Italy and Ethiopia. He is one of few Westerners to have worked in North Korea, where he was invited by the government to study volcanic activity at the culturally significant Mount Baekdu. He has also made three documentaries with filmmaker Werner Herzog about volcanoes and their scientific, cultural and spiritual significance. DISC ONE: Blue Rondo a la Turk - Dave Brubeck Quartet DISC TWO: Love Hangover - Diana Ross DISC THREE: Autobahn - Kraftwerk DISC FOUR: Lava - The B-52's DISC FIVE: Debaser - Pixies DISC SIX: Turangalîla-symphonie, Part VI Jardin du sommeil d’amour. Composed by Olivier Messiaen and performed by the Orchestre de l’Opéra Bastille, cond Myung-Whun Chung, with Yvonne Loriod (piano) and Jeanne Loriod (ondes martenot) DISC SEVEN: T’zeta - Bezawork Asfew DISC EIGHT: Hymn for the Dormition of the Mother of God - The Sixteen and Harry ChristophersBOOK CHOICE: The Vivisector by Patrick White LUXURY ITEM: A seismometer CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Debaser – PixiesPresenter Lauren Laverne Producers Sarah Taylor and Tim Bano
17/03/2438m 2s

Cillian Murphy, actor

Cillian Murphy has received global acclaim for his performance in the title role of Christopher Nolan’s epic film Oppenheimer. He has been nominated for an Oscar, which follows the best actor award he picked up at this year’s Golden Globes. On the small screen he played the Birmingham gangster Thomas Shelby for a decade in the BAFTA-winning Peaky Blinders, which made him a household name. Cillian was born in Cork in 1976 and initially music was his creative outlet. His band Sons of Mr Green Genes, which he formed with his younger brother, was offered a five album record deal, but the boys’ parents thought his brother was too young and vetoed a career in music.Cillian changed tack and in 1996 was cast as Pig in Enda Walsh’s play Disco Pigs, reprising the role in a film version in 2001. His breakthrough film role came playing Jim the bicycle courier in Danny Boyle’s 28 Days Later in 2002 which he followed up with a starring role in Ken Loach’s the Wind that Shakes the Barley. In 2005 he played Dr Jonathan Crane - Scarecrow - in Christopher Nolan’s film Batman Begins, which was the start of their continuing creative collaboration.Cillian lives in Ireland with his wife, the artist Yvonne McGuinness, and their two sons. DISC ONE: The Boy in the Bubble - Paul Simon DISC TWO: The Wandering Minstrel - Séamus Ennis DISC THREE: Walter’s Trip - The Frank and Walters DISC FOUR: Bullet the Blue Sky - U2 DISC FIVE: Somebody to Love - Queen DISC SIX: Everything in its Right Place - Radiohead DISC SEVEN: We Can Work it Out - The Beatles DISC EIGHT: If I Was A Painter - Lisa O’Neill BOOK CHOICE: Samuel Beckett: The Complete Dramatic Works LUXURY ITEM: An acoustic guitar and strings CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: We Can Work it Out - The BeatlesPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
10/03/2435m 47s

Val Wilmer, writer and photographer

Val Wilmer has photographed and interviewed many of the most significant musicians of the post-war years, including Duke Ellington, Muddy Waters, Miles Davis, Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, Aretha Franklin and many more. Val grew up in Streatham in South London, where a local record shop helped to nurture her love of music, especially jazz. Her lifelong passion for jazz and photography began at an early age: when she was just 14 years old, she persuaded her mother to take her to London Airport to see off the jazz legend Louis Armstrong who had been playing in the UK. She asked him for an autograph, then took a picture of him as he broke into a huge smile. The image was the first of many classic shots. Alongside her work as a photographer, Val has written extensively about music, as a journalist for numerous publications and as an author: her book As Serious As Your Life, examining the evolution of free jazz within the wider context of racial and sexual politics, has been widely acclaimed as a classic text. In 1983 she co-founded Format, the first all-female photographic agency, which aimed to champion women photographers and to widen the range of images available to newspapers and magazines. Her photographs are held in the collections of the V&A and the National Portrait Gallery. DISC ONE: Potato Head Blues - Louis Armstrong & His Hot Seven DISC TWO: Black, Brown And White - Big Bill Broonzy DISC THREE: Sonata for Solo Cello, Op. 8_1. By Kodaly, First movement performed by Janos Starker DISC FOUR: The Weary Blues – Langston Hughes DISC FIVE: My Lovely Elizabeth - S.E. Rogie DISC SIX: Criss Cross - Thelonious Monk DISC SEVEN: Dogon A D - Julius Hemphill DISC EIGHT: Love and Affection - Joan Armatrading BOOK CHOICE: The Collective Works of Langston Hughes LUXURY ITEM: Nail scissors CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Criss Cross - Thelonious Monk Presenter Lauren Laverne Producers Tim Bano and Sarah Taylor
03/03/2438m 32s

Jamie Dornan, actor

Jamie Dornan is an actor who first came to the attention of television audiences in 2013 when he played serial killer Paul Spector in the BBC series the Fall. Two years later he starred alongside Dakota Johnson in the film Fifty Shades of Grey and went on to play the same part in the rest of the trilogy. In 2022 he was the lead in the BBC drama the Tourist which was watched by millions of viewers and recently returned for its second season.Jamie was born in Holywood in County Down. At 10 he played Widow Twankey in the school pantomime - a defining moment for him when he experienced the thrill of playing to a live audience.After dropping out of university Jamie became a model and worked on big campaigns for some leading fashion brands before landing his first acting part in Sofia Coppola’s Marie Antoinette in 2006. His role in the Fall was his big break and the Fifty Shades films catapulted him to movie star status.In 2021 he played Pa in the film Belfast which was written and directed by Kenneth Branagh about his own childhood, growing up at the beginning of the Troubles.Jamie is married to the musician and composer Amelia Warner and they have three children.DISC ONE: Caravan - Van Morrison DISC TWO: Violin Concerto No. 1: II. Composed by Philip Glass and performed by Adele Anthony (violin) and Ulster Orchestra, conducted by Takuo Yuasa DISC THREE: Hoppípolla - Sigur Rós DISC FOUR: Bridge over Troubled Water - Simon & Garfunkel DISC FIVE: Metarie - Brendan Benson DISC SIX: Forever – The Beach Boys DISC SEVEN: Something - The Beatles DISC EIGHT: The Whole of the Moon – The WaterboysBOOK CHOICE: Where The Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak LUXURY ITEM: A golf club and balls CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Forever – The Beach Boys Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
25/02/2436m 23s

Sheku Kanneh-Mason, cellist

Sheku Kanneh-Mason is a cellist who came to international attention when he performed at the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in 2018. Still only 24, he has performed at a series of high profile locations including the Hollywood Bowl and Downing Street. Last year he was a soloist at the Last Night of the Proms. Sheku was brought up in Nottingham along with his six siblings who are also extremely talented musicians. At six-years-old he went to a concert by the Nottingham Youth Orchestra where he was transfixed by the cello section. He started having lessons not long afterwards and by the age of nine he’d completed all of his music grades – receiving the highest marks in the country. At 17 he won the BBC Young Musician of the Year competition.He went on to study at the Royal Academy of Music and made his debut at the BBC Proms as a soloist with the Chineke! Orchestra in 2017.In 2020 he was appointed an MBE for services to music and two years later became the Royal Academy of Music’s first Menuhin Visiting Professor of Performance Mentoring.DISC ONE: Cello Concerto in E minor, Op.85 - 1st movement: Adagio – Moderato. Composed by Edward Elgar and performed by Jacqueline du Pré, with the London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Sir John Barbirolli DISC TWO: Rivers of Babylon -The Melodians DISC THREE: Dat - Pluto Shervington DISC FOUR: String Quartet in C major, Op 20 No. 2, Capriccio: Adagio. Composed by Joseph Haydn and performed by The London Haydn Quartet DISC FIVE: Chances Are - Bob Marley DISC SIX: Requiem in D minor, K. 626 , Introitus 1 – Requiem. Composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and performed by the Monteverdi Choir DISC SEVEN: Symphony No.11 'The Year 1905' - II. The 9th January; Adagio. Composed by Dmitri Shostakovich and performed by The Moscow Philharmonic, conducted by Kirill Kondrashin DISC EIGHT: Largo from Organ Sonata No.5 in C major, BWV 529. Composed by Johan Sebastian Bach and performed by Samuel FeinbergBook: The Feynman Lectures on Physics by Richard Feynman Luxury: A cello and strings CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Requiem in D minor, K. 626 , Introitus 1 – Requiem. Composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and performed by the Monteverdi ChoirPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
18/02/2437m 55s

Guli Francis-Dehqani, Church of England Bishop

The Rt Revd Dr Guli Francis-Dehqani is the Bishop of Chelmsford. She also sits in Parliament as a Lord Spiritual and last year she played a prominent role in the Coronation, administering Holy Communion to the King and Queen. She was born in Isfahan, central Iran, the youngest of four children to Hassan Dehqani-Tafti, the first ethnic Iranian Anglican Bishop of his country, and his wife Margaret. In 1980, in the wake of the Islamic Revolution, her family were targeted and forced to leave the country. She arrived in the UK aged 13 as a refugee. Four decades on, Guli has yet to set foot on Iranian soil.She was ordained as a deacon in 1998 and a priest the following year. She was consecrated a bishop in November 2017, making her the first woman from a minority ethnic background to be ordained as an Anglican bishop in the UK.She is the lead Bishop for Housing for the Church of England and is a contributor to BBC Radio 4s Thought for the Day. She is married to Lee, who is a priest, and they have three children.DISC ONE: Requiem in D Minor, Op. 48: VI. Libera me. Composed by Gabriel Fauré and performed by Stephen Varcoe (baritone), The Cambridge Singers, conducted by John Rutter DISC TWO: Morgh-e Sahar - Homayoun Shajarian and Dastan Ensemble DISC THREE: Ride on Time - Black Box DISC FOUR: Miniatures for Piano Trio. Set 2: No. 4, Romance. Composed by Frank Bridge and performed by Alexander Chaushian and Ashley Wass DISC FIVE: Variations on Bahram’s Melody. Composed by Bahram Dehqani-Tafti and performed by Gabriel Francis-Dehqani with Fiona Sweeney, Krystof Kohout and Will Harmer DISC SIX: Take me to Church - Sinead O’Connor DISC SEVEN: Sovereign Light Café - Keane DISC EIGHT: Mahi - Golnar Shahyar, Mahan Mirarab, (feat. Luis Guerra)BOOK CHOICE: The Book of Kings LUXURY ITEM: Photo albums CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Requiem in D Minor, Op. 48: VI. Libera me. Composed by Gabriel Fauré and performed by Stephen Varcoe (baritone), The Cambridge Singers, conducted by John Rutter Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
11/02/2436m 58s

Graham Nash, musician

Graham William Nash is a musician, singer, songwriter and photographer. He had his first musical success as a member of the UK band The Hollies before his move to America when he sang as part of Crosby, Stills and Nash.Graham was born in 1942 and grew up in Salford. He found his singing voice at the age of six when he realised that not only could he sing, but he had the ability to harmonise any melody. He is a two-time Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee. Over the years, Graham has written many hit songs for The Hollies and Crosby, Stills and Nash including Our House and Marrakesh Express. Alongside his critically acclaimed musical career, Graham is also a successful photographer. His photos have been on show in galleries and museums around the world. He lives in New York with his third wife.DISC ONE: Be-bop-a-Lula - Gene Vincent DISC TWO: Great Balls of Fire - Jerry Lee Lewis DISC THREE: Maybe Baby - Buddy Holly and the Crickets DISC FOUR: Bye Bye Love - The Everly Brothers DISC FIVE: God Only Knows - The Beach Boys DISC SIX: Adagio for Strings, composed by Samuel Barber and performed by City of London Sinfonia conducted, by Richard Hickox DISC SEVEN: Don't Give Up - Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush DISC EIGHT: A Day In The Life - The BeatlesBOOK CHOICE: The Island at the Center of the World by Russell Shorto LUXURY ITEM: A sleeping bag CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: A Day In The Life - The BeatlesPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
04/02/2436m 26s

Delia Smith, CH, CBE, cookery writer and broadcaster

Delia Smith CH CBE is one of Britain’s most popular and successful cookery writers and broadcasters. Her first book, How to Cheat at Cooking, was published in 1971 and she presented her first television series, Family Fare, two years later. Since then she has presented many more series and her books have sold more than 21 million copies in the UK alone. Her widespread influence has led to the phrase ‘the Delia effect’, when large numbers of shoppers sought out her recommendations. Delia was born in Woking in 1941, and grew up in Bexleyheath. She attended the local secondary modern school, but left without any qualifications. She eventually found work as a pot washer and then a waitress in a French restaurant in London, where the chef encouraged her interest in cooking and food. In 1969 she landed the job of cookery writer on the Daily Mirror’s new colour supplement. There she honed her simple, no-nonsense instructions and met her husband, Michael Wynn-Jones.She hung up her apron in 2013 to spend more time on her other passion - football. Delia and Michael have been long-standing supporters – and, since 1996, majority shareholders - of Norwich City FC. She lives in Suffolk countryside in the same cottage she and Michael bought as their first home. DISC ONE: The Sound of Silence - Paul Simon DISC TWO: Within You Without You - The Beatles DISC THREE: Gnossienne No 1. Composed by Erik Satie and performed by Alexandre Tharaud DISC FOUR: Caruso – composed by Lucio Dalla and performed by Luciano Pavarotti DISC FIVE: Kyrie: Call To Prayer – Muezzin from the Muhammad Ali Mosque, Cairo. Performed by Bournemouth Symphony Chorus, Choristers of St. George's Chapel, Windsor and composed by David Fanshawe DISC SIX: This Woman's Work - Kate Bush DISC SEVEN: He Moved Through the Fair - Sinéad O'Connor DISC EIGHT: Happy - Pharrell WilliamsBOOK CHOICE: Sister Wendy’s 100 Best-loved Paintings by Wendy Beckett LUXURY ITEM: The Desert Island Discs archive CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Kyrie: Call To Prayer – Muezzin from the Muhammad Ali Mosque, Cairo. Composed by David Fanshawe and performed by Bournemouth Symphony Chorus, Choristers of St. George's Chapel, Windsor Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
21/01/2437m 38s

Greta Gerwig, writer and director

Greta Gerwig is the director of the feature film Barbie - the first woman in cinematic history to have the sole director’s credit for a billion dollar blockbuster. Her previous films include Lady Bird, inspired in part by her own childhood, and Little Women, a widely acclaimed adaptation of the much-loved novel. Greta was born and brought up in Sacramento in California. Her parents encouraged her love of the arts and she started trying to direct her friends in productions while she was still in kindergarten. She studied English and Philosophy at Barnard College in New York where she started acting and writing.After she graduated she appeared in a series of low budget, improvised, so-called mumblecore films, noted for their often low-key naturalistic style. Her solo directorial debut came in 2017 with Lady Bird, starring Saoirse Ronan and Laurie Metcalf. The film won two Golden Globe Awards and was nominated for five Academy Awards. Her follow up film, Little Women, received six Academy Award nominations including Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay.Greta has been named president of the jury for next year's Cannes Film Festival. She lives with her partner, the writer and director Noah Baumbach, and two sons in Manhattan. DISC ONE: Opening: I Hope I Get It - Don Pippin, A Chorus Line Orchestra, A Chorus Line Ensemble DISC TWO: Pinball Wizard - The Who DISC THREE: Sleigh Ride - Johnny Mathis, Percy Faith & His Orchestra DISC FOUR: And The Grass Won’t Pay No Mind - Elvis Presley DISC FIVE: Moonage Daydream - David Bowie DISC SIX: Top Hat, White Tie and Tails - Johnny Green & His Orchestra, Fred Astaire DISC SEVEN: Camelot: Finale Ultimo - Camelot Orchestra conducted by Franz Allers, Original Broadway Cast of Camelot DISC EIGHT: Ain't Got No / I Got Life - Nina Simone BOOK CHOICE: The Complete Poems: Emily Dickinson LUXURY ITEM: A writing set CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Sleigh Ride - Johnny Mathis, Percy Faith & His Orchestra Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
14/01/2435m 41s

Shirley Ballas, dance judge

Shirley Ballas is the head judge on Strictly Come Dancing, the BBC’s Saturday night entertainment show, which regularly attracts an audience of many millions. Known as the Queen of Latin dancing, she joined the show in 2017 after a long career as a competitive dancer and teacher. Shirley was born in Wallasey in 1960. She discovered dance as a seven-year-old when she started taking classes in her local church hall. With a combination of natural flair and hard graft she began winning competitions with her partners. In 1980, while she was still an amateur, she met Sammy Stopford who was ranked seventh in the world as a professional Latin dancer. Together they shot up the rankings and became known as the ‘non-stop Stopfords’.In 1984 she divorced Sammy and the following year she married Corky Ballas, an amateur dancer from Houston. Shirley set about training Corky to become a professional and in 1995 they won the British Open to the World Championships – a feat they repeated the following year.In 1996 Shirley retired from competitive dancing to concentrate on coaching dancers and judging competitions. In 2017 she joined Strictly Come Dancing, replacing her friend and former teacher Len Goodman as head judge. Shirley lives in south London with her mother Audrey and her boyfriend, the actor Danny Taylor.DISC ONE: Get Lucky - Daft Punk feat. Pharrell Williams and Nile Rodgers DISC TWO: Ring of Fire - Johnny Cash DISC THREE: Moon River - Frank Sinatra DISC FOUR: Sherry - The Four Seasons DISC FIVE: Smells Like Teen Spirit - Nirvana DISC SIX: You To Me Are Everything - The Real Thing DISC SEVEN: Highs and Lows - Alexander Jean DISC EIGHT: We’ve Only Just Begun - The Carpenters BOOK CHOICE: Unleash the Power Within by Tony Robbins LUXURY ITEM: Cotton knickers CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Highs and Lows - Alexander Jean Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
07/01/2436m 16s

Marina Abramović, performance artist

Marina Abramović is an artist renowned for performances and feats of endurance, in which her body is pushed to its limits. She has moved, scandalised and delighted audiences for half a century, and is now celebrated by world-leading galleries and institutions. Marina was born in Belgrade in 1946. Her parents were honoured as war heroes for their work for the Partisan resistance movement, and both took up senior roles in the post-war Yugoslav government. Marina became interested in painting during her childhood, and went on to study art. She first made her name as a performance artist in her 20s, creating events which often shocked viewers – and were equally traumatic for her. In 1974 she placed 72 objects, including sharp tools, a whip and a loaded pistol, on a table and invited gallery goers to use them on her, however they wished. She was attacked and left scarred, and part of her hair went white. For many years she led a nomadic existence, creating works with her partner, the German artist Ulay. In 1997, in response to the war in Bosnia, she created a prize-winning work for the Venice Biennale, in which for four days she attempted to scrub the blood from a vast pile of cow bones. In 2010 her exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York attracted almost a million people, many queuing for hours for a chance to sit opposite her in silence as part of her marathon performance The Artist is Present. More recently her work has been celebrated in a major retrospective exhibition at the Royal Academy in London, along with performances at English National Opera, marking the centenary of Maria Callas. DISC ONE: Aria from The Goldberg Variations. Composed by Johann Sebastian Bach German composer and musician, performed by Igor Levit DISC TWO: Norma, Act 1: "Casta diva". Composed by Vincenzo Bellini, performed by Maria Callas (soprano) and Coro del Teatro alla Scala di Milano DISC THREE: 4 Degrees - Anohni DISC FOUR: Paloma Negra - Chavela Vargas DISC FIVE: Private Dancer - Tina Turner DISC SIX: Sherab Nyingpo Mantra (The Heart Sutra) - Tashi Lhumpo Monks DISC SEVEN: Piano Concerto No. 21 in C Major, K. 467 - 2. Andante. Composed by Mozart and performed by Mitsuko Uchida (piano), with the English Chamber Orchestra, conducted by Jeffrey Tate DISC EIGHT: Rum And Coca-Cola - The Andrews Sisters BOOK CHOICE: In Search of the Miraculous by Peter D Ouspensky LUXURY ITEM: A cashmere blanket CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Sherab Nyingpo Mantra (The Heart Sutra) - Tashi Lhunpo MonksPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
31/12/2339m 17s

Dr Nicola Fox, head of science at Nasa

Dr Nicky Fox is only the second woman to hold the post of Head of Science at NASA since the agency was founded in 1958. She has responsibility for around a hundred missions which are investigating the mysteries of outer space. These missions are tackling questions such as how do hurricanes form and are we alone in the universe.Nicky was born in Hitchin in Hertfordshire and her father introduced her to the wonders of space when she was just a few months old. In 1969 he lifted her out of her cot to watch the television coverage of the Apollo 11 mission when Neil Armstrong walked on the moon. Nicky’s enduring fascination with the cosmos led her to study physics at Imperial College in London.After completing her PhD she took up a post-doctoral fellowship at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Centre in Maryland. In 2010 she became the project scientist for the Parker Solar Probe, humanity’s first mission to a star, which launched in 2018 and is still flying through the sun’s atmosphere collecting data. Recently she oversaw the Osiris-Rex mission which brought back the first asteroid samples from deep space.In 2021 Nicky was awarded the American Astronautical Society’s Carl Sagan Memorial Award for her leadership in the field of Heliophysics. DISC ONE: The Best – Tina Turner DISC TWO: Livin’ On A Prayer - Bon Jovi DISC THREE: Lara’s Theme - MGM Studio Orchestra, composed and conducted by Maurice Jarre DISC FOUR: Danny Boy - Andy Williams DISC FIVE: When You Know - Shawn Colvin DISC SIX: (Reach Up for the) Sunrise - Duran Duran DISC SEVEN: Boulevard of Broken Dreams - Green Day DISC EIGHT: Canyon Moon - Harry StylesBOOK CHOICE: Pale Blue Dot by Carl Sagan LUXURY ITEM: Lego CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Boulevard of Broken Dreams - Green DayPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
24/12/2336m 55s

Pia Sinha, Director Prison Reform Trust

Pia Sinha is the Director of the Prison Reform Trust and a former prison governor. She was awarded the St Martin’s Award for Prison Governance for her role in turning around HMP Liverpool, which was widely described as Britain’s worst jail in 2018, following a highly critical report by HM Inspectorate of Prisons. Pia was born in north India and she and her family came to the UK when she was 14. After studying economics and psychology at university, she pursued a career as a psychologist, and her work took into prisons. Whilst she was training, she also ran a London pub with her first husband. After many years working as a psychologist in male and female prisons she was encouraged to apply for the Senior Prison Manager Programme aimed at training governors of the future. In 2013 she became the governor of HMP Thorn Cross, and was the first Asian woman to a run a prison in England and Wales. Earlier this year she joined the Prison Reform Trust as its Director. DISC ONE: Kathy’s Song - Simon & Garfunkel DISC TWO: Ek Ladki Ko Dekha - Kumar Sanu DISC THREE: Back to Life - Soul II Soul DISC FOUR: Melt - Leftfield DISC FIVE: Andmoreagain - Love DISC SIX: Black (featuring Norah Jones) - Danger Mouse & Daniele Luppi DISC SEVEN: The Power of Love - Frankie Goes to Hollywood DISC EIGHT: Hometown Glory - AdeleBOOK CHOICE: A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry LUXURY ITEM: Chilli sauce CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Kathy’s Song - Simon & Garfunkel Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
17/12/2335m 21s

Peter White, broadcaster

Peter White is an award-winning broadcaster. In 2024 he will celebrate 50 years presenting Radio 4’s In Touch, the programme for blind and visually impaired people. He is also one of the presenters of the network’s consumer series, You and Yours.Peter was born in 1947 and has been blind since birth. Like his older brother Colin, he has a rare genetic anomaly that meant his optic nerve hadn’t developed properly. From the age of five he boarded at The Royal School of Industry for the Blind where he excelled at Braille and won national reading competitions for several years running. He completed his secondary education at Worcester College for the Blind. In 1970 he turned up in the reception for the new local radio station BBC Solent and announced that he wanted to present programmes for them. They took him on and he went on to report and present for Link, the station’s programme for blind people. Years later he presented Viewpoint, a two hour live, mainstream mid-morning programme on Radio Solent. His appointment was featured on the 9 O’clock news as he was the first blind presenter to host a live daily topical programme.In 1995 he was appointed the BBC's Disability Affairs Correspondent - the first totally blind person to produce as well as present reports for television news. Peter has presented other Radio 4 programmes including No Triumph, No Tragedy and Blind Man on the Rampage. In 1998 he was appointed MBE for services to broadcasting. Peter lives in Marple, Greater Manchester with his second wife Jackie.DISC ONE: Somebody Who Loves You - Joan Armatrading DISC TWO: An extract from Hancock’s Half Hour - Sunday Afternoon at Home with Tony Hancock. With Sidney James, Bill Kerr, Hattie Jacques and Kenneth Williams DISC THREE: Ev'ry Time We Say Goodbye - Ella Fitzgerald DISC FOUR: Badge - Cream DISC FIVE: Albatross - Judy Collins DISC SIX: The Banks of Green Willow. Composed by George Butterworth and performed by The Academy of St Martin in the Fields, conducted by Sir Neville Marriner DISC SEVEN: My Old Man - Joni Mitchell DISC EIGHT: We Can Work It Out – The BeatlesBOOK CHOICE: The 1962 edition of the Wisden Cricketers' Almanack LUXURY ITEM: Pear drops CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Albatross - Judy Collins Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
10/12/2335m 48s

Lea Salonga, singer and actor

Lea Salonga was just 18 when she became an international theatre star, taking a leading role in the world premiere production of the musical Miss Saigon in 1989. Her performance - first in London, then on Broadway - won her Olivier and Tony awards. She has provided the singing voice for two Disney princesses, and has become a strong advocate for better Asian representation on stage and screen. She was born in Manila in the Philippines, where she made her professional stage debut in 1978 at the age of seven in a production of The King and I. Further roles in musicals followed, and she recorded a best-selling solo album when she was 10. Lea planned to become a doctor before she was invited to audition for Miss Saigon, and her immediate success launched a performing career in which she has made history many times. She was the first Asian woman to win a Tony for an acting role, the first Asian actor to star in Les Misérables, the first Filipino artist to sign a record deal with an international label and the first person to voice two different Disney princesses - Mulan and Jasmine in Aladdin, in which she sang A Whole New World, which won the Oscar for Best Original Song. She has appeared in numerous international stage productions, as well as television shows, films and singing tours. Earlier this year she starred in and made her debut as a producer on the musical Here Lies Love on Broadway: written by David Byrne and Fatboy Slim, it focuses on the life of Imelda Marcos, wife of Philippines dictator Ferdinand Marcos. In September, Lea returned to the London Stage in 'Old Friends' , a musical tribute to Stephen Sondheim.She has performed for six Filipino and four American presidents. DISC ONE: Feed The Birds (Tuppence a Bag) - Julie Andrews, The Disney Studio Chorus DISC TWO: Days and Days -Judy Kuhn DISC THREE: Billie Jean - Michael Jackson DISC FOUR: Tsismis - Ryan Cayabyab DISC FIVE: Gymnopédie No. 1. Composed by Erik Satie and performed by Philippe Entremont DISC SIX: Intro: Singularity - BTS DISC SEVEN: Baby Mine - Betty Noyes DISC EIGHT: Snooze - Agust D ft. Ryuichi Sakamoto & WOOSUNGBOOK CHOICE: The Complete Far Side by Gary Larson LUXURY ITEM: A typewriter CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Snooze - Agust D ft. Ryuichi Sakamoto & WOOSUNG Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
03/12/2336m 17s

Professor Dame Lesley Regan, obstetrician and gynaecologist

Professor Dame Lesley Regan is the Government’s first Women’s Health Ambassador for England. She is one of the main drivers behind the upcoming Women’s Health Strategy which aims to tackle the gender health gap and improve services for women.As a former president of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists – only the second woman to hold that post in its 94-year history – she shone a light on historically taboo subjects from period problems and contraception to the menopause.Lesley was born in London in 1956. When she was seven she told her father that she wanted to be a doctor and although the sciences weren’t her strongest subjects at school, she won a place at the Royal Free Hospital Medical School in London in 1975.In 1991 she was appointed a senior lecturer in Obstetrics and Gynaecology at St Mary’s Hospital in London and consultant at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust. The following year she set up the Recurrent Miscarriage Clinic at St Mary’s which is the largest miscarriage referral service in the world.In 2020 she was appointed a DBE for services to women’s healthcare.DISC ONE: Mr Bojangles – Nina Simone DISC TWO: Symphony No. 5 in C Sharp. Composed by Mahler and performed by Berliner Philharmoniker DISC THREE: Agnus Dei. Composed by Bach and performed by Iestyn Davies, (counter-tenor), The English Consort, conducted by Harry Bicket DISC FOUR: I Cried for You - Katie Melua DISC FIVE: Norma: Act I, Scene 1: Casta diva (Norma/Coro) Composed by Vincenzo Bellini and performed by Maria Callas (soprano), The Teatro Alla Scala Orchestra, conducted by Tullio Serafin DISC SIX: The Best – Tina Turner DISC SEVEN: Metamorpheme – Shakespeare and the Bible DISC EIGHT: Clarinet Concerto In A, K. 622 - II. Adagio. Composed by Mozart and performed by Karl Leister (clarinet) and Berliner Philharmoniker, conducted by Herbert Von KarajanBOOK CHOICE: The Works of George Eliot LUXURY ITEM: Marmite on toast CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: The Best – Tina TurnerPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
26/11/2337m 16s

Patrick Grant, designer and broadcaster

Patrick Grant is a designer, clothing entrepreneur and a judge on the BBC TV programme The Great British Sewing Bee. Patrick was born in Edinburgh in 1972. His interest in clothes and in making things was evident from a very early age, along with a love of sport: his father was a rugby coach and trained Patrick and his friends. Some of his friends went on to represent Scotland and Patrick played for Scotland's under-19 team. He studied Material Science and Engineering at Leeds University and worked in industry for a decade. Then, after spotting an advertisement in a newspaper, he bought an ailing Savile Row tailoring company. It was almost an impulse buy, at great financial risk. After a shaky start, he turned the business around, and within five years he was named menswear designer of the year at the British Fashion Awards. Patrick went on to buy a factory in Blackburn, Cookson and Clegg. He is passionate about British manufacturing, and set up Community Clothing with the aim of making good quality affordable day wear. He has been a judge on The Great British Sewing Bee since the programme began in 2013. He divides his time between London, Blackburn and the Highlands.DISC ONE: Les Fleurs - Minnie Riperton DISC TWO: My Heart’s in the Highlands - Else Torp and Christopher Bowers-Broadbent DISC THREE: Do You Wanna Funk - Sylvester DISC FOUR: Big Time Sensuality, the Fluke Magimix - Björk DISC FIVE: Harry Patch (In Memory of) - Radiohead DISC SIX: Kill Dem - Jamie xx DISC SEVEN: Get Better - alt-J DISC EIGHT: I Saw - Young Fathers BOOK CHOICE: Green Woodwork: Working with Wood the Natural Way by Mike Abbott LUXURY ITEM: A complete set of woodworking tools CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Kill Dem - Jamie xx Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
19/11/2336m 1s

Dame Donna Langley, film studio executive

Dame Donna Langley is chairman and chief content officer for the NBC Universal Studio Group, the first British woman in history to run a major Hollywood film studio. She green lit Christopher Nolan’s latest film Oppenheimer and was one of the earliest and most ardent supporters of the Abba movie Mamma Mia.She was born in London and brought up on the Isle of Wight. She always knew she was adopted as a baby, which she says made her feel special within her family. She left London for Los Angeles when she was in her early twenties, looking for adventure rather than following a career plan.In LA, she worked in a club on Sunset Boulevard before taking up an internship with a film producer. Later she worked as an assistant at the production studio New Line Cinema, and in 2001 she joined Universal Studios as senior vice president of production. She says her decision to say yes to a film is based on her gut instinct and whether she loves it. She is a champion of original content and early on in her career backed Straight Outta Compton – the story of the hip hop band NWA – and later Get Out, directed by Jordan Peele. She currently oversees major franchises including Fast and Furious, Despicable Me and Jurassic World.Dame Donna lives in California with her husband and two children. DISC ONE: Thank You For The Music - Abba DISC TWO: Zorba the Greek - Mikis Theodorakis DISC THREE: La Wally - composed by Alfredo Catalani and performed by Wilhelmenia Fernandez DISC FOUR: This is the Day - The The DISC FIVE: It Was A Good Day - Ice Cube DISC SIX: Never Is a Promise - Fiona Apple DISC SEVEN: All My Friends - LCD Soundsystem DISC EIGHT: Come Home (feat. André 3000) - Anderson Paak BOOK CHOICE: Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel García Márquez LUXURY ITEM: Tarot cards CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: All My Friends - LCD SoundsystemPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
12/11/2336m 0s

Greg Jackson, entrepreneur

Greg Jackson is the founder and CEO of Octopus Energy. The company is the UK’s second largest domestic energy provider with over five million customers and is one of Europe’s leading investors in renewables. Greg was born in Germany in 1971 where his father was a surveyor in the army. The family returned to the UK a few years later and, following his parents’ divorce, Greg and his two younger siblings were brought up by his mother in Halifax. He describes his mother’s fortitude in bringing up three children on a tight budget as inspirational.Greg left school at 16 to write video games but returned to education a few years later to complete his A-Levels. He went on to study economics at Cambridge University and then joined Procter and Gamble’s graduate scheme where he worked in marketing.He became managing director of a mirror business when he was still in his twenties and then began flexing his business acumen by investing in a series of tech start-up businesses. In 2015 he secured £10m in investment to start a new energy company.Greg has two sons and lives in west London. DISC ONE: The Only Way is Up - Yazz & The Plastic Population DISC TWO: Run To The Hills - Iron Maiden DISC THREE: Shipping Forecast (BBC Radio 4) Read by Eugene Fraser DISC FOUR: I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For - U2 DISC FIVE: Dizzy - The Wonder Stuff and Vic Reeves DISC SIX: The Gambler - Kenny Rogers DISC SEVEN: One Day Like This - Elbow DISC EIGHT: Rockaway Beach - Motörhead BOOK CHOICE: The Apollo Guidance Computer: Architecture and Operation by Frank O'Brien LUXURY ITEM: A pinball machine CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: One Day Like This - Elbow Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
05/11/2336m 8s

Katherine Ryan, comedian

Katherine Ryan is a Canadian comedian and writer. Her edgy and provocative routines have led to sell-out tours, comedy specials on television and her sitcom series The Duchess. Based on her experience at the time, the Duchess tells the story of a successful, happily single mother and Katherine wrote it out of frustration because she believed no one else was telling a story like hers on screen.Katherine was born in Sarnia in Ontario where she attended a local French-speaking primary school. The school celebrated the arts and Katherine became a musical theatre enthusiast who could sing, dance, write and act.Later she moved to Toronto where she studied city planning and worked for a branch of the restaurant chain Hooters. She credits the latter with teaching her the value of being entertaining and smart.In 2008 she relocated to London with her boyfriend and a few years later she got her big break as a comedian, performing on the panel show 8 Out of 10 Cats. By now a single mother to daughter Violet, she developed a rapport with audiences by sharing stories from her own life – both funny and sad. She describes her tendency to connect with her fans in this way as her “language of love”.In 2019, while filming an episode of the BBC series Who Do You Think You Are in Canada, she met up with her high school boyfriend, Bobby. They hadn’t seen each other for 20 years but the spark was still there and later that year they married in Denmark and went on to have two children together.The programme was recorded on September 6th.DISC ONE: Spice Up Your Life - The Spice Girls DISC TWO: The Real Slim Shady - Eminem DISC THREE: La Isla Bonita - Madonna DISC FOUR: Soul One - Blind Melon DISC FIVE: 22 - Taylor Swift DISC SIX: Psychic City (Classixx Remix) - Yacht DISC SEVEN: Crash Into Me - Dave Matthews Band DISC EIGHT: 16 Shots - Stefflon DonBOOK CHOICE: The Highway Rat by Julia Donaldson, illustrated by Axel Scheffler LUXURY ITEM: A hat and skincare set CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Spice Up Your Life - The Spice Girls Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
29/10/2336m 42s

Lucinda Russell, horse trainer

Lucinda Russell is a Scottish racehorse trainer. Her stables in Kinross have sent out almost 900 winners, including two Grand National champions. She is one of only two Scottish trainers and four women to have celebrated a Grand National win since the event began in 1839, and her yard is the most successful in the history of Scottish jump racing. Lucinda was born in Edinburgh in 1966. Although she didn’t come from a racing background – her father ran the family’s whisky business – she was obsessed with horses from a very young age. After many years of pleading, she finally got her first pony at the age of 10. A few years later the family moved from Edinburgh to Arlay Farm near Milnathort in Kinross-shire, where she still trains her horses today.After studying psychology at the University of St Andrews, Lucinda began riding competitively, which she funded by buying and training horses before selling them on. She took out her professional trainer’s licence in 1995 and built up her stables on the family farm. Lucinda’s first success at the Grand National was in 2017 with One for Arthur, ridden by Derek Fox. She had helped buy the horse for the owners, two self-described ‘golf widows’. She was awarded an OBE for services to horseracing in the Queen’s Birthday Honours the following year. Then in 2023 she won again with Corach Rambler. Lucinda runs her stables with her partner the former National Hunt jockey Peter Scudamore.DISC ONE: Some Nights - Fun. DISC TWO: Forever Young - Alphaville DISC THREE: Wand'rin' Star - Lee Marvin DISC FOUR: Piano Man - Billy Joel DISC FIVE: This Is The Day - The The DISC SIX: To Win Just Once -The Saw Doctors DISC SEVEN: Can't Take My Eyes Off You - Andy Williams DISC EIGHT: Andante, Andante - ABBA BOOK CHOICE: Equine Sports Medicine and Surgery by Andris J. Kaneps, Kenneth William Hinchcliff, and Raymond J. Geor LUXURY ITEM: A camper van CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Can't Take My Eyes Off You - Andy Williams Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Katy Hickman
22/10/2335m 56s

Adrian Edmondson, actor, writer

Adrian Edmondson first shot to national fame in 1982, playing the studded punk Vyvyan in the TV sitcom The Young Ones, set in a seedy student flat. The cast largely came from the developing alternative comedy scene, and included Rik Mayall and Alexei Sayle. Adrian was born in Bradford in 1957. He spent time as a child in Cyprus, Bahrain and Uganda, following his father who worked as a teacher for the armed forces. He attended a boarding school in Yorkshire from the age of 11, where he often rebelled against its rules and restrictions, but enjoyed performing in school plays. He headed to Manchester University to study drama, where he soon met Rik Mayall. They bonded over their shared interests in comedy, double acts, violent slapstick and the plays of Samuel Beckett. It was the start of a long performing partnership and friendship, which included the anarchic TV comedy and long-running touring show Bottom and a production of Beckett’s Waiting for Godot on the West End stage.Adrian has also worked widely as an actor and musician, including an acclaimed appearance as Scrooge for the RSC, and performances with the reunited Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band. Adrian married Jennifer Saunders in 1985, and they have three daughters.DISC ONE: Downtown - Petula Clark DISC TWO: A Song of the Weather - Flanders & Swann DISC THREE: Sugar, Sugar - The Archies DISC FOUR: On My Radio - The Selecter DISC FIVE: Jole Blon - Vin Bruce DISC SIX: Saturday Gigs - Mott the Hoople DISC SEVEN: I’m Bored - Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band DISC EIGHT: Wide Open Spaces - The Chicks (formerly The Dixie Chicks)BOOK CHOICE: Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett LUXURY ITEM: A tab of acid CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Wide Open Spaces - The Chicks Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
14/10/2359m 41s

Shirley Collins, folk singer

Shirley Collins first enjoyed success as one of the leading figures in the British folk revival of the 1960s. She initially performed with her sister, Dolly Collins, and also collaborated with other folk luminaries to create some of the era’s most beloved albums. In the past decade she has made an acclaimed return to the concert stage and the recording studio.Shirley was born in Sussex in 1935. She can still recall how her grandfather used to sing folk songs to comfort her while they were sheltering during German air raids in the early 1940s. Alongside her career as a singer, in the 1950s she travelled to the American South with Alan Lomax, where they made field recordings of blues and folk musicians, helping to create a significant archive.Later in her performing career, Shirley found that she could no longer sing, following a distressing betrayal in her private life. She stepped away from music and was silent for many years, taking on other work, including a stint in a job centre Then, in her 80s, she found her voice again. In 2016 she released her first new album after a gap of almost four decades, and she has since released two more albums. Shirley lives in Sussex, not far from her childhood home.DISC ONE: Chiling O Guiry - Concerto Caledonia DISC TWO: The Birds in the Spring - The Copper Family DISC THREE: Who Would True Valour See - Maddy Prior & The Carnival Band DISC FOUR: Dear Father, Pray Build Me a Boat - Sheila Smith DISC FIVE: 61 Highway Blues - Mississippi Fred McDowell DISC SIX: Poor Sally Sits a-weeping - Dolly Collins DISC SEVEN: A Heart Needs A Home - Richard & Linda Thompson DISC EIGHT: Going Home - Mark Knopfler BOOK CHOICE: A collection of Brodie detective novels by Kate Atkinson LUXURY ITEM: A solar powered fridge filled with Italian Ice cream and two lipsticks CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Poor Sally Sits a Weeping Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
02/09/2337m 8s

Toto Wolff, Formula 1 executive

Toto Wolff is CEO and Team Principal of the Mercedes Formula 1 motor racing team. He has led the team to an unprecedented seven consecutive drivers’ championships – six with Lewis Hamilton - and eight consecutive constructors' championships. He is the most successful manager in Formula 1 history, and arguably one of the most successful managers in any sport. Toto was born Torger Wolff in Vienna. When he was eight his father was diagnosed with a brain tumour and died when Toto was 15. Toto found himself looking after his mother and sister from a young age which he believes contributed to the strength of character he developed as an adult.Toto's original ambition in motorsport was to be a driver, and he started competing in his late teens. Following the deaths of drivers Ayrton Senna and then Roland Ratzenberger, his sponsor withdrew support, which forced him to give up his dream. He turned his attention to business and made a fortune as an entrepreneur. In 2009 he bought a stake in the Williams Formula 1 team and four years later bought a 30% stake in the Mercedes team. Toto is married to the former racing driver Susie Stoddart and they divide their time between the UK and Monaco. Their six-year-old son Jack is already showing an interest in karting. DISC ONE: Unfinished Sympathy - Massive Attack DISC TWO: Mama - Genesis DISC THREE: Money Can’t Buy It - Annie Lennox DISC FOUR: Iron Sky - Paolo Nutini DISC FIVE: We Are The Champions – Queen DISC SIX: Another Day in Paradise - Phil Collins DISC SEVEN: Fallen - Lauren Wood DISC EIGHT: The Power of Love - Frankie Goes to Hollywood BOOK CHOICE: The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas LUXURY ITEM: Diving fins and a mask CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Fallen - Lauren Wood Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
27/08/2335m 57s

Simon Woolley, crossbench peer

Simon Woolley, Lord Woolley of Woodford, is principal of Homerton College at Cambridge University. He is the first black man to head an Oxbridge college. He is a co-founder of Operation Black Vote, which campaigns for greater inclusivity in politics, and became a crossbench peer in 2019. Simon spent his early years in an orphanage in Leicester before being fostered and then adopted by a white couple who also adopted his brother Mick. He left school at 16 to work as a car mechanic and then moved to London where he embarked on a successful career in sales. In 1988 he completed a one year access course which provided the pathway to university and a degree in English and Spanish. In 1996 Simon was one of the co-founders of Operation Black Vote, a non-partisan organisation which encourages voter registration and community engagement, aiming to give a voice to all sections of society.He was awarded a knighthood for services to race equality in 2019 and took up his current role as principal of Homerton College in 2021. DISC ONE: I Want You Back - The Jackson 5 DISC TWO: Green Green Grass of Home - Tom Jones DISC THREE: Manhattan - Ella Fitzgerald DISC FOUR: Titanium (Morten Future Rave Mix) - David Guetta (feat Sia) DISC FIVE: Hagamos Lo Que Diga El Corazón - Grupo Niche DISC SIX: Dreamland – Composed and performed by Alexis Ffrench and Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by James Morgan DISC SEVEN: Cowboy bebop tank! - Niyari DISC EIGHT: For Once in My Life - Stevie Wonder BOOK CHOICE: Football in Sun and Shadow by Eduardo Galeano LUXURY ITEM: A razor blade CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: For Once in My Life - Stevie Wonder Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
20/08/2335m 58s

Jill Scott, footballer

Jill Scott is the second most capped England footballer ever, playing for her country 161 times. Before her retirement last year, she played in ten major international tournaments and was part of the England team who beat Germany to win the 2022 European Championships.Jill was born and brought up in Sunderland, and excelled in a range of sports from an early age. She won the London mini-marathon when she was 14 but her heart was in football. She played for a boys junior football team until she was asked to leave when she was nine years old. Fortunately her mother found a girls team for her. She began her senior career when she was a teenager, initially playing for Sunderland before moving on to Everton and then Manchester City, where she won all the domestic trophies. She was renowned as a highly competitive midfield player, who scored 27 goals for England. She lives in Manchester with her partner Shelly, where they co-own a coffee shop. .DISC ONE: (Something Inside) So Strong - Labi Siffre DISC TWO: So Good - Boyzone DISC THREE: Step by Step - Whitney Houston DISC FOUR: Sunday Morning - Maroon 5 DISC FIVE: The Climb - Miley Cyrus DISC SIX: My Love is Your Love - Whitney Houston DISC SEVEN: Mysterious Girl - Peter Andre DISC EIGHT: Sweet Caroline - Neil DiamondBOOK CHOICE: The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole, Aged 13¾ by Sue Townsend LUXURY ITEM: A notebook and pens CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: The Climb - Miley CyrusPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
12/08/2336m 51s

Peter Doig, artist

Peter Doig is one of Britain’s most successful living artists. His paintings have been exhibited at major galleries around the world, winning wide critical acclaim and selling for tens of millions of pounds at auction, setting sales records. Peter was born in Edinburgh in 1959, but grew up in Trinidad and Canada, where his father had chosen to work. Peter was partly educated at a Scottish boarding school, but didn't enjoy the experience. He returned to Canada, dropped out of education, and at the age of 17 found work on a gas rig in the rural west. He decided to move to London, largely attracted by the post-punk music scene, and from 1979 until the late 1980s, he trained as a painter at art schools in the capital, as well as spending time back in Canada. While his contemporaries among young British artists in the 1990s often created large-scale installations, sculptures or videos, Peter dedicated himself to painting, often working with very large canvases, creating atmospheric, mysterious landscapes acclaimed for their use of colour.In 2002, echoing his own childhood, he and his family moved to Trinidad, where he set up his studio. The island became his main home for almost two decades, before he moved to London in 2021. Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
05/08/2336m 13s

Stanley Tucci, actor

Stanley Tucci is an actor, director and writer who is known for his roles in a broad range of feature films including the Devil Wears Prada, Julie and Julia and the Hunger Games. More recently he has whetted the appetites of television viewers with his food and travel series Searching for Italy.Stanley’s grandparents left Calabria in southern Italy for a new life in America, where his parents were born. Stanley himself was born in Peekskill, New York, and grew up in the nearby hamlet of Katonah. He studied drama at the State University of New York and in 1985 made his debut in John Huston’s film Prizzi’s Honour. In 1996 he co-wrote, co-directed and starred in Big Night about two brothers who run a struggling Italian restaurant. The film was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance film Festival. In 2002 he starred in Sam Mendes’s Road to Perdition and he played a serial killer in Peter Jackson’s film the Lovely Bones. He published his first cookbook in 2012.Stanley lives in London with his wife, the literary agent Felicity Blunt, and their family.DISC ONE: Let It Be - The Beatles DISC TWO: Compared to What (Live at the Montreux Jazz Festival) - Les McCann & Eddie Harris DISC THREE: Mozart: Clarinet Concerto in A Major, K. 622 - II. Adagio. Performed by Karl Leister (clarinet) and Academy of St Martin in the Fields, conducted by Sir Neville Marriner DISC FOUR: The Weakness in Me - Joan Armatrading DISC FIVE: What a Wonderful World - Louis Armstrong DISC SIX: Tchaikovsky: Serenade for String Orchestra in C Major, Op. 48, TH 48 - I. Pezzo in forma di sonatina: Andante non troppo - Allegro moderato. Performed by Berliner Philharmoniker and conducted by Herbert von Karajan DISC SEVEN: A Foggy Day (In London Town) - Frank Sinatra DISC EIGHT: Not Dark Yet - Bob Dylan BOOK CHOICE: Westward Ha! by S J Perelman LUXURY ITEM: Art supplies CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: What a Wonderful World - Louis Armstrong Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
30/07/2335m 53s

Kate Mosse, writer

Kate Mosse OBE is a British novelist and broadcaster. She is the author of ten novels and short story collections, including The Joubert Family Chronicles and the best-selling Languedoc Trilogy. She has also written four works of non-fiction including her memoir about caring, An Extra Pair of Hands. In 1996 she co-founded the Women’s Prize for Fiction.Born in Chichester, she studied English at Oxford University and had a very successful career in publishing before writing her first book about pregnancy. Her novel, Labyrinth, published in 1995 and set in Carcasonne, became an international bestseller which enabled her to give up her publishing job and write full time.Kate lives in Chichester with her husband, Greg Mosse, and her mother-in-law, Grannie Rosie. She is a Visiting Professor in Creative Writing at the University of Chichester, a Patron of the Chichester Festival for Music, Dance and Speech, and President of the Festival of Chichester.She was awarded an OBE in 2013 for services to literature and women.DISC ONE: Morning Has Broken - Cat Stevens DISC TWO: These Boots Are Made for Walkin' - Nancy Sinatra DISC THREE: Station to Station - David Bowie DISC FOUR: Walls Come Tumbling Down - The Style Council DISC FIVE: I Will Survive - Gloria Gaynor DISC SIX: Piano Concerto in G Major, M. 83. Composed by Maurice Ravel. Performed by Martha Argerich and London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Claudio Abbado DISC SEVEN: Dancing Queen - Abba DISC EIGHT: La chanson des vieux amants - Jacques Brel BOOK CHOICE: Four Quartets by T.S. Eliot LUXURY ITEM: A jukebox CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Piano Concerto in G Major, M. 83, composed by Maurice Ravel and performed by Martha Argerich and London Symphony Orchestra Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
22/07/2338m 16s

Adam Kay, writer

Adam Kay is a writer whose memoir This is Going to Hurt; Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor won the Book of the Year prize at the National Book Awards and has sold over three million copies. It was adapted for television as a BBC series that won four BAFTAs this year, including Adam’s award for best drama writer.Adam was born in Brighton in 1980 and studied medicine at Imperial College London. In 2004 he started working as a junior doctor, specialising in obstetrics and gynaecology. In 2010 he left medicine following a catastrophic incident in surgery.He had kept a diary throughout his medical career, partly to help cope with the long shifts and stressful environment that came with life as a hospital doctor. In 2016 Adam read from his diaries for a show at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and the positive reception he received from audiences encouraged him to use them as the basis for a memoir. The book became a publishing sensation, and Adam has published further books and enjoyed considerable success with his live performances. Adam lives in Oxfordshire with his husband James. DISC ONE: Chopsticks - Liberace DISC TWO: Mis-shapes - Pulp DISC THREE: Chopin: Waltz No. 14 in E Minor, Op. posth. (no intro) Composed by Frédéric Chopin and performed by Vladimir Ashkenazy DISC FOUR: Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ the Boat - Stubby Kaye, Original Cast Chorus (from Guys and Dolls) DISC FIVE: Forgot About Dre - Dr Dre & Eminem DISC SIX: Poisoning Pigeons - Tom Lehrer DISC SEVEN: A Lady of a Certain Age - The Divine Comedy DISC EIGHT: San Diego Serenade - Tom WaitsBOOK CHOICE: York Notes for the Complete Works of Shakespeare LUXURY ITEM: A diary and pen CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: San Diego Serenade - Tom WaitsPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
16/07/2336m 55s

Claudia Rankine, poet

Claudia Rankine is a poet, essayist and playwright. She is best known for her book Citizen: An American Lyric which combines short stories about everyday injustices experienced by people of colour with poems telling the stories of black men who died during confrontations with the police. The book won several awards in the US and the UK’s Forward Prize for best collection in 2015. Claudia was born in Kingston, Jamaica and at seven followed her parents to New York City where they had emigrated some years before. After graduating from university in 1993, she won a poetry prize for her thesis which became her first book – Nothing in Nature is Private. In addition to her poetry Claudia has written three plays and has taught at several universities including Yale and New York University. In 2016 she won a prestigious ‘Genius Grant’ from the MacArthur Fellowship which celebrates intellectual and artistic achievement and awards its winners hundreds of thousands of dollars. She used the money to co-found the Racial Imaginary Institute which interrogates notions of race and whiteness.Claudia lives in Connecticut with her husband, the photographer and filmmaker John Lucas.DISC ONE: Good as Hell - Lizzo DISC TWO: Stir It Up - Bob Marley & The Wailers DISC THREE: Nightshift - Commodores DISC FOUR: More Than This - Roxy Music DISC FIVE: Can't Take My Eyes Off of You (I Love You Baby) - Lauryn Hill DISC SIX: Kiss - Prince & The Revolution DISC SEVEN: My Favorite Things - John Coltrane DISC EIGHT: The Rhythm Of The Night - CoronaBOOK CHOICE: As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner LUXURY ITEM: A solar powered television, playing tennis matches CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Good as Hell - Lizzo Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
09/07/2336m 53s

Jeremy Bowen, journalist

Jeremy Bowen is the BBC’s award-winning international editor. He has been reporting from the world’s conflict zones, including Iraq, Bosnia, the Middle East and Ukraine, for more than 30 years. Jeremy was born in Cardiff in 1960. His father was a journalist for BBC Wales, who covered the Aberfan disaster in 1966, and his mother was a press photographer. In 1984, after university, Jeremy joined the BBC as a news trainee and in 1989 he starting reporting from Afghanistan and El Salvador.From 1995 to 2000 he was based in Jerusalem as the BBC’s Middle East correspondent. During that time he reported on the assassination of the Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Rabin. His coverage of the event won him the Royal Television Society’s Award for Best Breaking News report.In 2022 Jeremy started reporting on the ground in Ukraine and earlier this year he returned to Iraq to discover how the country was coping, 20 years after the US-led invasion in March 2003.Jeremy lives in London with his partner Julia.DISC ONE: Let’s Stay Together - Al Green DISC TWO: Symphony No. 2 in E-Flat Major, Op. 63: II. Larghetto. Composed by Edward Elgar and performed by Hallé Orchestra, conducted by Sir John Barbirolli DISC THREE: Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op 18. Composed by Sergei Rachmaninoff and performed by Vladimir Ashkenazi (piano) with the London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by André Previn DISC FOUR: America - Simon & Garfunkel DISC FIVE: La bohème: O soave fanciulla. Composed by Giacomo Puccini and performed by Plácido Domingo, Montserrat Caballé, London Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Georg Solti DISC SIX: Denn alles Fleisch, es ist wie Gras. Composed by Johannes Brahms and performed by Berliner Philharmoniker, conducted by Herbert von Karajan DISC SEVEN: In My Life – The Beatles DISC EIGHT: Waterloo Sunset - The Kinks BOOK CHOICE: The Complete Novels of George Orwell LUXURY ITEM: A manual typewriter CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Symphony No. 2 in E-Flat Major, Op. 63: II. Larghetto. Composed by Edward Elgar and performed by Hallé Orchestra and Wiener Singverein, conducted by Sir John BarbirolliPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
02/07/2337m 35s

Ronnie O'Sullivan, snooker player

Ronnie O’Sullivan OBE is currently ranked the number one snooker player in the world, and is widely regarded as one of the finest players in the history of the sport. He has won the Masters a record seven times and he jointly holds the record for winning the World Snooker Championship seven times. Since 1997 he has held the world record for the fastest 147 break, leading to his nickname 'the Rocket'. Ronnie grew up in Essex and his father gave him his first snooker cue when he was seven. He took to the game immediately: he was playing on a full size snooker table when he was just eight, and two years later he was beating adult players. By the age of 12, he was winning cash prizes in local tournaments, and was soon earning more than his teachers. Ronnie turned professional when he was 16, and quickly established himself as a star player and a fans' favourite - but he has also made headlines away from the snooker table, with accounts of his depression and struggles with alcohol and drugs. For many years he has kept his physical and mental health in check through his passion for running. He received an OBE in 2016 for services to snooker. DISC ONE: Lose Yourself - Eminem DISC TWO: Careless Whisper - Wham! DISC THREE: Step by Step - Whitney Houston DISC FOUR: Real Gone Kid - Deacon Blue DISC FIVE: You’re So Vain - Carly Simon DISC SIX: Maybe Tomorrow - Stereophonics DISC SEVEN: Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me) - Train DISC EIGHT: That’s All - Genesis BOOK CHOICE: Running with the Kenyans by Adharanand Finn LUXURY ITEM: A painting set CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: That’s All - GenesisPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
24/06/2355m 15s

Professor Sharon Peacock, scientist

Professor Sharon Peacock is professor of public health and microbiology at Cambridge University. In March 2020 she set up the COVID-19 Genomics UK (COG-UK) Consortium to map the genetic sequence of the virus as it spread and mutated. Within a year COG-UK was leading the world in identifying mutant COVID strains, and this data was instrumental in helping the development of vaccines and treatments.Sharon was born in Margate and left school at 16 to work in her local corner shop. She moved on to become a dental nurse the following year and after that she trained to be a nurse at the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton. After studying for A levels at evening classes, in 1983 she won a place to study medicine as a mature student at the University of Southampton. After further training and several years researching bacterial diseases in Thailand, she returned to the UK where she led the development of the Cambridge Infectious Diseases Initiative. In 2021 Sharon was awarded the MRC Millennium Medal, the Medical Research Council’s most prestigious prize.DISC ONE: Fast Car - Tracy Chapman DISC TWO: A Boy and a Girl - Voces8 DISC THREE: Time Has Told Me - Nick Drake DISC FOUR: Title: Driving Home for Christmas - Chris Rea DISC FIVE: Take a Bow - Muse DISC SIX: Cantique de Jean Racine, Op. 11 (from Fauré’s Requiem) Composed by Gabriel Fauré and performed by Choir of St. John's College, conducted by Andrew Nethsingha DISC SEVEN: Symphonie Fantastique by Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique, composed by Hector Berlioz, performed by Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique and conducted by John Eliot Gardiner DISC EIGHT: The Lark Ascending, composed by Vaughan Williams and performed by Tasmin Little (violin) BBC Symphony Orchestra and conducted by Sir Andrew DavisBOOK CHOICE: Oxford Textbook of Medicine LUXURY ITEM: A projector and photos CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Time Has Told Me – Nick DrakePresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
18/06/2337m 34s

Simon Pegg, actor

Simon Pegg is an actor and screenwriter who became a household name after appearing in two of Hollywood’s most successful film franchises – Mission: Impossible and Star Trek. He also won many fans for co-creating the so-called Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy of films – Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz and the World’s End.Simon was born in Gloucester and studied theatre, film and television at the University of Bristol. As a student he started performing stand-up routines with his pet goldfish called Roger who was a Marxist poet – albeit a silent one. Simon first appeared on television in the mid-1990s and made a name for himself by co-creating the sitcom Spaced with the actor Jessica Hynes and the director Edgar Wright. He is one of the few performers to have achieved what Radio Times calls the “Holy Grail of Nerdom” – playing roles in Doctor Who, Star Trek – as Montgomery ‘Scotty’ Scott – and Star Wars: The Force Awakens. He also co-wrote the screenplay for Star Trek Beyond. In 2006 Simon played the British technician Benji Dunn in Mission: Impossible III and has appeared in every Mission: Impossible film since. He is currently filming the eighth instalment alongside Tom Cruise. Simon lives in Hertfordshire with his wife Maureen, daughter Tilly and their dogs. DISC ONE: A Day in the Life – The Beatles DISC TWO: Rosalinda’s Eyes – Billy Joel DISC THREE: The Asteroid Field. Composed and conducted by John Williams and performed by London Symphony Orchestra DISC FOUR: Accept Yourself – The Smiths DISC FIVE: Marian (Version) – The Sisters of Mercy DISC SIX: I Feel For You – Chaka Khan DISC SEVEN: I Bloom Blaum – Coldplay DISC EIGHT: Salt In The Wound - Boygenius BOOK CHOICE: The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks LUXURY ITEM: A coffee maker CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: A Day in the Life – The BeatlesPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
11/06/2335m 19s

Professor Peter Hennessy, historian

Professor Peter Hennessy is one of the UK’s leading contemporary historians. He has written acclaimed and important books about politics, the civil service, the intelligence agencies and the British constitution on which he is an expert. Peter was born in London in 1947 and read history at St John’s College, Cambridge. He started writing for the Times in the mid-1970s, covering the inner workings of Whitehall whose activities at that time were shrouded in secrecy. Peter says he approached his journalism like an amateur anthropologist trying to discover more about an unknown culture. His reports were viewed with suspicion by some members of the civil service and Harold Wilson, the then prime minister, issued an edit banning them from talking to him. In 1986 Peter co-founded the Institute of Contemporary British History, and in 1992 he moved from journalism to academia at Queen Mary, University of London where he is Attlee professor of contemporary British history. He is a fellow of the British Academy and was made a crossbench life peer in 2010. During the COVID-19 pandemic he started keeping a diary which he describes as an “aid to humility” with the aim of assessing post-world war history as BC (Before Covid) or AC (After Covid). Peter lives in London with his wife Enid. DISC ONE: Slow Train - Flanders & Swann DISC TWO: Italian Concerto in F, BWV 971, composed by Johann Sebastian Bach and performed by George Malcolm DISC THREE: Why Don’t Women Like Me? - George Formby DISC FOUR: Schubert String Quintet In C Major,D. 956 - 2. Adagio, composed by Franz Schubert, performed by Robert Cohen (cello) and Amadeus Quartet DISC FIVE: The Elements - Tom Lehrer DISC SIX: London Girls - Chas & Dave DISC SEVEN: Skye Boat Song - The Pipes and Drums Of Leanisch DISC EIGHT: How Lovely is Thy Dwelling Place, composed by Johannes Brahms, performed by Festival Choir And Orchestra, conducted by Thomas D. Rossin BOOK CHOICE: Poetry in the Making by Ted Hughes LUXURY ITEM: A fountain pen, ink and paper CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: London Girls - Chas & DavePresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
04/06/2336m 58s

Dara Ó Briain, comedian and television presenter

Dara Ó Briain has toured the world as a stand-up comedian, and hosted the BBC’s satirical series Mock the Week for 17 years. A science graduate with a love of astronomy, he co-presented the BBC series Stargazing Live with Professor Brian Cox, and is a regular guest on television quizzes and panel shows. Dara grew up in Bray, County Wicklow and attended Irish language schools, playing for the Gaelic football and hurling teams. He studied mathematical physics at University College Dublin where he took part in debating competitions and discovered a flair for getting laughs from an audience.In 2001 he moved to the UK and, alongside performing at comedy gigs, he started appearing on television shows including Never Mind the Buzzcocks and Have I Got News For You. His love of mathematics came to the fore when he presented the game show School of Hard Sums and he has gone on to write popular science books for children. Dara continues to perform stand-up and, when he’s not touring what he calls his conversational and whimsical style of comedy, he lives in London with his wife and three children. DISC ONE: Kiss - Prince & The Revolution DISC TWO: Requiem in D Minor, K. 626: No 1, Introitus and Kyrie - Requiem and Kyrie. Composed by Mozart and performed by London Symphony Orchestra and London Symphony chorus, conducted by Sir Colin Davis DISC THREE: Glanfaidh Mé - Kíla DISC FOUR: Groove is in the Heart - Deee-Lite DISC FIVE: Cuba Libre - Gloria Estefan DISC SIX: All About My Girl - Jimmy McGriff DISC SEVEN: Piazza, New York Catcher - Belle and Sebastian DISC EIGHT: Adagio for Strings. Composed by Samuel Barber and performed by Berliner Symphoniker, conducted by Sir Simon Rattle BOOK CHOICE: The Feynman Lectures on Physics by Richard Feynman LUXURY ITEM: Astrophotography equipment CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Groove is in the Heart - Deee-Lite Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
23/04/2337m 49s

Liz Carr, actor and activist

Liz Carr is most widely known for her role as the forensic examiner Clarissa Mullery in the long-running BBC TV drama Silent Witness. She appeared in more than 70 episodes, from 2013 until 2020. Last year she won the Olivier award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in the National Theatre production of The Normal Heart. Her role was inspired by Dr Linda Laubenstein, a pioneer in the treatment of AIDS and a wheelchair user: Liz was the first wheelchair user to play the part, almost four decades after the premiere.Liz was brought up in Bebington, Merseyside. One of her early stage roles was as the Cowardly Lion in a primary school production of The Wizard of Oz. She became a wheelchair user at the age of 11, after a protracted illness. She studied Law at Nottingham University and after graduation worked as a disability rights adviser. She also became a disability rights activist, and more recently has been a campaigner against the legalisation of assisted dying. When she was 30, Liz decided on a career change after taking part in a drama course with the Graeae Theatre Company. She became a stand-up comedian and a member of various comedy groups, and moved on to theatre and television work, including recent roles in the TV dramas The Witcher and Good Omens. Liz lives in London with her wife.DISC ONE: Over the Rainbow - Judy Garland DISC TWO: Beautiful Dreamer - Sheryl Crow DISC THREE: Sit Down - James DISC FOUR: Rollin’ Thunder - Ian Stanton DISC FIVE: 9 to 5 - Dolly Parton DISC SIX: Something Good - Julie Andrews DISC SEVEN: Palliative Clare (from Assisted Suicide The Musical) - Claire Willoughby DISC EIGHT: I Feel Love - Donna Summer BOOK CHOICE: The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry LUXURY ITEM: A pair of ruby slippers CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Sit Down – JamesPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
19/04/2337m 17s

Amanda Blanc, businesswoman

Amanda Blanc is the group CEO of the insurance company Aviva. She is one of a handful of women at the top of FTSE 100 companies and has spoken out against the sexism and misogyny many – including herself - have encountered during their careers. In 2022 she called out disparaging comments made to her by some of the male shareholders at her company’s own AGM. Her published riposte received some 1.6m views in the space of a few days. Amanda was born in Treherbert, a former mining village in the Rhondda Valley. Both her grandfathers worked down the mines and she says the miners’ strike of 1984 left a lasting impression on her and taught her the value of community. After studying modern history at Liverpool University, Amanda joined a graduate training scheme at Commercial Union. By the age of 29 she was the company’s youngest and first female branch manager when she took up the post in Leicester. She joined Aviva in 2020 and the following year she was appointed Women in Finance Charter Champion by HM Treasury. She was named the Sunday Times Business Person of the Year for 2022.Amanda is married to Ken Blanc, who also worked in insurance but gave up his job to support her career. They have two daughters and live in Hampshire.DISC ONE: Running Up That Hill (A Deal With God) - Kate Bush DISC TWO: Town Called Malice - The Jam DISC THREE: Thank You for the Music - Abba DISC FOUR: Tainted Love - Soft Cell DISC FIVE: This is Me - Keala Settle DISC SIX: Dignity - Deacon Blue DISC SEVEN: The Man – Taylor Swift DISC EIGHT: Land of My Fathers - Welsh rugby fans at Six Nations Championship, 2013 BOOK CHOICE: Little Women by Louisa May Alcott LUXURY ITEM: A photo album CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Tainted Love - Soft CellPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
09/04/2335m 58s

Robert Webb, comedian

Robert Webb first reached a wide audience as the co-star of Channel 4’s longest running sitcom, the BAFTA-award winning Peep Show. With his long-standing comedy partner David Mitchell, he also created That Mitchell and Webb Sound for BBC Radio 4, which transferred to TV as That Mitchell and Webb Look, which also won a BAFTA. Robert was born in Lincolnshire and first became hooked on comedy when his impressions of teachers made his school friends laugh. After realising that many of his comedy heroes had studied at Cambridge University, and were members of the Cambridge Footlights, he decided to follow in their footsteps. He took his A levels twice in order to win a place to study English there, and went on to become vice-president of the Footlights - where he met David Mitchell. Their comedy partnership has lasted for 30 years, starting out with shows for the Edinburgh fringe and writing for other performers, before enjoying TV success as a double act. Robert has also written a best-selling memoir, How Not to be a Boy, in which he reflects on masculinity, and a novel. In 2019, a routine medical examination revealed that he had a congenital heart defect. He underwent heart surgery and is now fully recovered.Robert lives in London with his wife and two daughters.DISC ONE: Do I Move You? - Nina Simone DISC TWO: The Old Fashioned Way - Charles Aznavour DISC THREE: Fool if you Think It’s Over - Elkie Brooks DISC FOUR: Get A Life - Soul II Soul DISC FIVE: Metal Mickey - Suede DISC SIX: Being Alive, composed by Stephen Sondheim, performed by Adrian Lester and cast of Company and recorded in 1996 at Donmar Warehouse, London DISC SEVEN: How to Disappear Completely - Radiohead DISC EIGHT: It’s Corn - Tariq, The Gregory Brothers & Recess TherapyBOOK CHOICE: Cultural Amnesia by Clive James LUXURY ITEM: A top hat and tails CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: The Old Fashioned Way - Charles AznavourPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
01/04/2336m 57s

Sonia Boyce, artist

In 2022 Sonia Boyce became the first Black British woman to represent Britain at the Venice Biennale exhibition. She also took home the coveted Golden Lion Award for her installation Feeling Her Way, which combined video and collage with improvised performances by five female musicians. Sonia was born in London and grew up near the renowned Whitechapel Art Gallery. As a very young child she would visit the gallery, often alone, relishing the light and space inside the building. In 1985, two years after graduating from Stourbridge College of Art, she completed her drawing Missionary Position II, which was acquired by the Tate two years later. She was just 25 and was one of the youngest artists and the first Black woman to enter its permanent collection.In 1999 Sonia started work on the Devotional Collection, an archive of sound, ephemera and wallpaper relating to black British women in music, ranging from Shirley Bassey to Neneh Cherry, and celebrating their contribution to international culture. Sonia lives in London with her partner, the curator David A. Bailey. She has taught Fine Art studio practice for more than 30 years in several art colleges across the UK. She was awarded an OBE in the 2019 New Year Honours for services to art. DISC ONE: Meet Me On The Corner - Lindisfarne DISC TWO: Help Me Make It Through the Night - John Holt DISC THREE: Caught You In A Lie - Louisa Mark DISC FOUR: Psycho Killer -Talking Heads DISC FIVE: Wolf & Leopards - Dennis Brown DISC SIX: Is That Jazz - Gil Scott Heron DISC SEVEN: Put Your Records On - Corinne Bailey Rae DISC EIGHT: Love and Affection - Joan Armatrading BOOK CHOICE: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl LUXURY ITEM: Champagne CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Is That Jazz by Gil Scott Heron Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
26/03/2335m 20s

Jenny Beavan, costume designer

Jenny Beavan has won three Oscars for her costumes for the films Room with a View, Mad Max: Fury Road and Cruella, and has received nine further Academy Award nominations. She was born in London, and her parents were both professional musicians who encouraged her to paint, draw and learn a musical instrument. After studying theatre design, she was invited at the age of just 21 to create the sets for a production of Carmen at the Royal Opera House, conducted by Sir Georg Solti. She also worked on the costumes, which eventually led to her current career. Her credits now include more than 60 films and television series, including a long collaboration with the Merchant Ivory team, on titles such as Howards End and Remains of the Day, as well as Room with a View. Her costumes range from precise period recreations, in films such as The King’s Speech, to the post-apocalyptic world of Mad Max and the extravagant 1970s-inspired gowns for Emma Stone and Emma Thompson in Cruella. Along with her Oscars, Jenny has also won four Baftas and two Primetime Emmy awards. She was appointed a OBE in 2017. DISC ONE: Endure from Bach’s St Matthew Passion. Performed by Hans Peter Blochwitz and the Chapelle Royale Orchestra, conducted by Philippe Herreweghe DISC TWO: The Stately Homes of England - Noël Coward DISC THREE: Bizet: Carmen / Act 2 - "La fleur que tu m'avais jetée" (The flower you threw at me) Performed by Plácido Domingo and London Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Sir Georg Solti DISC FOUR: O Mio Babbino Caro. Composed by Giacomo Puccini and performed by Kiri Te Kanawa and The London Philharmonic Orchestra DISC FIVE: Scream - Caitlin Albery Beavan and Jim Bell DISC SIX: Parking Fines - Joe Lycett from his That’s the Way, A-Ha, A-Ha tour DISC SEVEN: I Will Survive - Gloria Gaynor DISC EIGHT: Radamisto, HWV 12, Act 2: "Ombra cara di mia sposa" (Radamisto) (Beloved shadow of my bride) Composed by George Frideric Handel, performed by Emöke Baráth and Ensemble Artaserse, conducted by Philippe Jaroussky BOOK CHOICE: The Complete Novels of Jane Austen LUXURY ITEM: A cello CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Endure from Bach’s St Matthew Passion. Performed by Hans Peter Blochwitz and the Chapelle Royale Orchestra, conducted by Philippe Herreweghe Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
19/03/2338m 51s

David Sedaris, writer

David Sedaris is a writer whose humorous stories and wry takes on everyday encounters have led to 13 bestselling books and many radio programmes including Meet David Sedaris on BBC Radio 4. His work is based on his own life and, although very funny, does not shy away from the bleaker aspects of his experiences. David was born in New York State and grew up in Raleigh in North Carolina. He dropped out of university and became a performance artist for a while, but says he lacked artistic talent and chose not to pursue art as a career. In 1990 he moved to New York City where he supported himself by working as a Christmas elf called Crumpet at Macy’s department store. He wrote an essay about this experience called Santaland Diaries which he read on National Public Radio. His performance attracted an enthusiastic response from listeners and led to his first major break as a writer and broadcaster. David’s later collections of stories and essays have won non-fiction awards and in 2002 he gave a sold-out performance at Carnegie Hall in New York. The recording of this event was later nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Comedy Album. David’s most recent collection of essays addresses a range of subjects including the end of Donald Trump’s administration, the COVID-19 pandemic and the death of his father.David lives with his boyfriend Hugh and they divide their time between New York and West Sussex. David is a committed litter-picker which prompted his local Sussex council to name a refuse vehicle after him - Pig Pen Sedaris.DISC ONE: I Don’t Wanna Play House by Tammy Wynette DISC TWO: Where is Love, composed by Lionel Bart and performed by Keith Hamshere and Original London Cast of Oliver! DISC THREE: Dindi by Maria Bethânia DISC FOUR: Until You Come Back to Me (That's What I'm Gonna Do) by Aretha Franklin DISC FIVE: I Got A Right to Praise The Lord by The Georgia Mass Choir DISC SIX: Manhattan by Blossom Dearie DISC SEVEN: You and I by Abbey Lincoln DISC EIGHT: They Say It’s Wonderful by John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman BOOK CHOICE: A German dictionary LUXURY ITEM: Pencils and paper CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: You and I by Abbey LincolnPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
12/03/2336m 28s

Lesley Manville, actor

Lesley Manville made her debut on the West End stage as a teenager in 1972, and since then has taken on a wide range of roles on stage and screen, including an Oscar-nominated performance in the film Phantom Thread. She was born in Brighton and first enjoyed performing as a singer, winning competitions with her sister. When she was 15, she commuted daily to the Italia Conti stage school in London. Her first professional role was in a West End musical, and in 1974 she joined the cast of the ITV soap opera Emmerdale Farm. After two years she decided to leave, even though the work was well paid, and return to the stage. At the Royal Court in London she appeared in some of the most critically acclaimed new plays of the 1980s including Caryl Churchill’s Top Girls, and Andrea Dunbar’s Rita, Sue and Bob Too. She has also enjoyed a long collaboration with the film director Mike Leigh, memorably playing the alcoholic Mary in Another Year. Her recent TV roles include starring as Cathy in the popular BBC Two sitcom Mum, for which she won a Royal Television Society Award in 2019. She has also played Princess Margaret in The Crown, including a scene in which Margaret shares her favourite records on a BBC radio progamme. She was appointed a CBE in 2021. DISC ONE: Over The Rainbow - Eva Cassidy DISC TWO: My Brother Jake - Free DISC THREE: O Soave Fanciulla, composed by Giacomo Puccini, performed by Jose Carreras, Richard Stilwell and Teresa Stratas and Metropolitan Opera Chorus, conducted by James Levine DISC FOUR: Sugar on the Floor - Etta James DISC FIVE: You Don't Have To Say You Love Me - Dusty Springfield DISC SIX: Not While I’m Around - Barbra Streisand DISC SEVEN: Make You Feel My Love - Adele DISC EIGHT: Phantom Thread III - Jonny Greenwood BOOK CHOICE: A Botanical Encyclopedia LUXURY ITEM: A bed with linen, duvet and pillows CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Over The Rainbow - Eva CassidyPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
05/03/2336m 35s

Professor Corinne Le Quéré, climate scientist

Corinne Le Quéré is the Royal Society Research Professor of Climate Change Science at the University of East Anglia where she studies the way marine ecosystems respond to climate change. She uses computer simulators of the ocean to assess how the carbon cycle functions and her climate models have resulted in significant findings about how warmer temperatures have affected the ocean’s ability to absorb carbon. Corinne was born in Quebec and as a child spent camping holidays in the national parks of Eastern Canada which fostered her interest in the natural world. She studied physics at the University of Montréal and then took a Masters in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences. Her love of oceanography began with a desire to uncover the mysteries that lie beneath the waves. In 2007, while she was working with UEA and the British Antarctic Survey, she published her landmark paper which demonstrated that human activity reduced the Southern Ocean’s capacity to absorb atmospheric carbon dioxide. Corinne advises the UK Committee on Climate Change and served on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) when it won the Nobel Prize in 2007. She was appointed a CBE in 2019.Corinne lives with her husband in Norfolk where she hopes one day to buy a piece of land and plant a forest which will play a central part in her personal plan to achieve carbon neutrality. DISC ONE: La Vida Es Un Carnaval by Celia Cruz DISC TWO: Les copains d’abord by Georges Brassens DISC THREE: We are the Champions by Queen DISC FOUR: Harmonie du soir à Chateauguay by Beau Dommage DISC FIVE: Proud Mary (Live) by Tina Turner DISC SIX: Die Zauberflöte, K. 620, Act 2: "Der Hölle Rache (Konigin der Nacht)" (Queen of Night) composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, performed by Bernard Haitink, Edita Gruberová, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks DISC SEVEN: LDN by Lily Allen DISC EIGHT: Three-Part Inventions: Sinfonia 15 BWV 801, composed by Johann Sebastian Bach, performed by Martin Stadtfeld BOOK CHOICE: World Atlas of the Oceans by Dave Monahan LUXURY ITEM: A mask and snorkel CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: La Vida Es Un Carnaval by Celia CruzPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
26/02/2337m 11s

Michael Pollan, writer

Michael Pollan’s award-winning writing about plants, nature and food combines anthropology and philosophy with culture, health and natural history. Time Magazine has named him one of the 100 most influential people in the world and his maxim to ‘Eat food. Not too much. Mostly Plants.’ is a central tenet of the sustainable food movement.Michael grew up in suburban Long Island, USA, and planted his first garden when he was eight-years-old. He was an intern at the Village Voice newspaper in New York while he was a student and after he graduated he joined Harper’s Magazine as an editor where he worked with the writer Tom Wolfe among others.Michael’s first book Second Nature: A Gardener’s Education is a collection of essays about gardening and his later titles, including the Botany of Desire and the Omnivore’s Dilemma, addressed modern methods of food production and argued that in an era of fast and processed food, basic cooking skills were being lost. Recently, Michael has written about the use of psychedelic drugs as a potential treatment for some mental health conditions, such as depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Michael is professor of journalism at the University of California, Berkeley. In 2020 he co-founded the UC Berkeley Center for the Science of Psychedelics. Michael is married to the artist Judith Belzer and they live in California. DISC ONE: Day-O (The Banana Boat Song) by Harry Belafonte DISC TWO: The Sound of Silence by Simon & Garfunkel DISC THREE: Going Up the Country by Canned Heat DISC FOUR: Cheek to Cheek by Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald DISC FIVE: Shady Grove by Jerry Garcia and David Grisman DISC SIX: California by Joni Mitchell DISC SEVEN: Tomorrow Never Knows by The Beatles DISC EIGHT: Cello Suite No. 2 in D Minor, BWV 1008: I. Prélude, composed by J.S Bach and performed by Yo-Yo Ma BOOK CHOICE: Ulysses by James Joyce LUXURY ITEM: Dark chocolate CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Cello Suite No. 2 in D Minor, BWV 1008: I. Prélude, composed by J.S Bach and performed by Yo-Yo Ma Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
19/02/2335m 55s

Gabby Logan, broadcaster

Gabby Logan presents a range of popular BBC sports programmes and hosts high-profile sporting events including the Olympics, Premiership football and the World Cup. Gabby was born in Leeds and her father Terry Yorath is a former footballer and manager who played for Leeds United and for the Welsh national team. As a young girl she was a rhythmic gymnast and represented Wales in the Commonwealth Games in 1990. She retired from the sport the following year after struggling with severe back pain. In 1996 she joined Sky Sports as a presenter, moving to ITV two years later where she became one of the first female sports anchors to break into terrestrial television and the first woman to host the channel’s football coverage. Gabby joined the BBC in 2007 where she has presented Final Score, Inside Sport and Match of the Day. She also co-presents the BBC Sports Personality of the Year awards show. In 2021 Gabby was awarded an MBE for services to sports broadcasting and the promotion of women in sport. Gabby is married to the former rugby union player Kenny Logan and they have two children. DISC ONE: Abide With Me by Emeli Sandé DISC TWO: Ain't No Mountain High Enough by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell DISC THREE: Summertime by Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong DISC FOUR: Going Home: Theme Of The Local Hero (Live at Hammersmith Odeon, 1983) by Dire Straits DISC FIVE: Daniel by Elton John DISC SIX: Belter by Gerry Cinnamon DISC SEVEN: As by George Michael & Mary J. Blige DISC EIGHT: You Got the Love by The Source, featuring Candi StatonBOOK CHOICE: Every Ruddy Word by Alan Partridge LUXURY ITEM: A piano CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: You Got the Love by The Source, featuring Candi Staton Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
12/02/2336m 33s

Sir Malcolm Walker, retailer

Sir Malcolm Walker is the chairman and co-founder of the frozen food supermarket chain Iceland. He was brought up in Grange Moor, West Yorkshire. He was just 14 when his father died, and he helped his mother run a smallholding, driving a tractor and ploughing fields. His business instinct kicked in during his teenage years, when he promoted Saturday night dances by booking bands into local church halls. After receiving rejections from Marks & Spencer and Littlewoods, he became a trainee manager at Woolworths, and recalls that he started at the very bottom, sweeping the floors for many months before gradually winning promotions and moving round the country. In 1970, he and Peter Hinchcliffe, a colleague from Woolworths, opened a shop in Oswestry, selling loose frozen food from chest freezers. The business soon began to take off, Malcolm and Peter were both fired by Woolworths, and Malcolm went on to build a company which now has more than 1000 stores in the UK and Ireland. Along the way, boardroom battles led to his departure in the early 2000s, but he later returned and Iceland is now back in family ownership.Alongside his business pursuits, Malcolm has been a fundraiser for dementia charities, after his wife was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's. She died in 2021 after more than 50 years of marriage. He was knighted in 2017, has three children, one of whom also works in the family business, and he married for the second time in August last year. DISC ONE: Violin Concerto No. 1 in G Minor, Op. 26: II. Adagio, composed by Max Bruch, performed by Itzhak Perlman (violin) and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, conducted by Bernard Haitink DISC TWO: Goodbye by Josef Locke DISC THREE: Only You by The Platters DISC FOUR: Silence is Golden by The Tremeloes DISC FIVE: Memory composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber and performed by Elaine Paige DISC SIX: All I Ask of You composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber and performed by Steve Barton and Sarah Brightman DISC SEVEN: La bohème, SC 67 / Act I composed by Giacomo Puccini and performed by Luciano Pavarotti (tenor) and Mirella Freni (soprano) with the Berlin Philharmonic, conducted by Herbert von Karajan DISC EIGHT: Quando me’n vo (“Musetta’s Waltz”) from La Bohème composed by Giacomo Puccini and performed by Natalie Walker BOOK CHOICE: Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe LUXURY ITEM: A cast iron cooking pot CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Quando me’n vo (“Musetta’s Waltz”) from La Bohème composed by Giacomo Puccini and performed by Natalie Walker Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
05/02/2337m 11s

Kirsty Young, broadcaster

Kirsty Young was the award-winning presenter of Desert Island Discs between 2006 and 2018, interviewing 496 castaways. Her TV work includes BAFTA-winning coverage of events marking the centenary of World War One, and memorable live presentation from Windsor of the state funeral of Queen Elizabeth II earlier this year. Kirsty was born in East Kilbride in Scotland. After a chance meeting with a freelance TV cameraman, she became interested in a media career, and worked as a runner and then a researcher for an independent production company, before joining BBC Radio Scotland as a trainee news and continuity announcer, beating 700 other applicants.She moved to Scottish Television in 1992, and five years later she was part of the launch of Channel 5, presenting its main news programme while famously perching on the studio desk rather than sitting behind it. She also presented the BBC’s Crimewatch for many years. In 2018, Kirsty had to step back from broadcasting, to undergo treatment for rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia. After four years away from the microphone, she returned to present coverage of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations in June this year. She is married to Nick Jones, CEO of Soho House and they have four children. DISC ONE: Cello Suite No.1 in G Major, BWV1007: I. Prelude [J.S.Bach] performed by Steven Isserlis DISC TWO: My Baby Just Cares for Me by Nina Simone DISC THREE: Both Sides Now by Joni Mitchell DISC FOUR: Caledonia by Dougie MacLean DISC FIVE: I Happen to Like New York Bobby Short, performer. [Cole Porter, composer] DISC SIX: Songbird by Fleetwood Mac DISC SEVEN: O Magnum Mysterium by [Tomás Luis de Victoria] sung by The Voices of Ascension choir, directed by Dennis Keene DISC EIGHT: Count Me Out by Kendrick LamarBOOK CHOICE: The Most of Nora Ephron by Nora Ephron LUXURY ITEM: A cinema and film archive CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Cello Suite No.1 in G Major, BWV1007: I. Prelude [J.S.BACH] performed by Steven IsserlisPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
22/01/2352m 10s

Steven Spielberg, director

Steven Spielberg is the most successful director of his generation and the highest-grossing director of all time: his films have taken more than $10 billion worldwide. From Jaws to E.T. and Jurassic Park to Schindler’s List, his storytelling has captivated audiences around the world. Steven grew up in Phoenix, Arizona, where he started making films as a young boy. In 1958 he made a short Western which won him a Boy Scout merit badge. He screened it to his entire Scout troop and their laughter and applause got him hooked on film making.In 1971 he directed a television movie called Duel about a motorist who is pursued by a murderous truck driver. The film attracted good reviews from critics, and before the age of 30, Steven had directed his first global hit: Jaws grossed $471 million worldwide and is credited as heralding the arrival of the blockbuster era. He now says Jaws was ‘a free pass into my future.’ He has won three Academy Awards, and has received eight nominations for best director. The Fabelmans, his most recent film, is a semi-fictionalised account of his own coming of age, drawing on his film-making experiences as a child. Steven is married to the actor Kate Capshaw, who starred in his film Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, and they have seven children. DISC ONE: The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance by Gene Pitney DISC TWO: Fugue in G minor, BMW 578 – “The Little” arranged by Leopold Stokowski, composed by J.S Bach, performed by Philadelphia Orchestra and conducted by Yannick Nezet-Seguin DISC THREE: Michelle by The Beatles DISC FOUR: What the World Needs Now Is Love by Jackie DeShannon DISC FIVE: Come Fly with Me by Frank Sinatra DISC SIX: The Ghost of Tom Joad by Bruce Springsteen DISC SEVEN: Somewhere, composed by Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim, performed by Reri Grist DISC EIGHT: Coolhand by Buzzy Lee BOOK CHOICE: The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck LUXURY ITEM: H-8 Bolex camera CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Coolhand by Buzzy Lee Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
15/01/2336m 15s

Cate Blanchett, actor

Cate Blanchett is arguably the most celebrated Australian actor ever, winning two Academy Awards, three BAFTAs, three Golden Globes and dozens of other honours around the world. She grew up in Melbourne, and although she enjoyed music and drama at school, she initially had no plans to pursue a career as an actor. She started a degree course in economics and fine art, but dropped out after a year, and later won a place at the National Institute of Dramatic Art in Sydney. She found international fame before she was 30, playing Elizabeth I in the highly-acclaimed film Elizabeth, winning an Oscar nomination and a BAFTA. Since then, she has appeared in more than 70 films and 20 stage productions. She won an Oscar and a BAFTA for playing Katharine Hepburn in The Aviator, directed by Martin Scorsese, and other notable roles include the elf leader Galadriel in Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings series and a version of Bob Dylan in I'm Not There. She won her second Oscar in 2014 for her performance in Woody Allen's Blue Jasmine. Her TV work includes the acclaimed series Mrs America, where she played the conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly, and she has recently taken on the role of an internationally famous composer and conductor in the film Tár, written and directed by Todd Field. Cate has received the Australian Centenary medal and is a Companion of the Order of Australia. She is married to the director and playwright Andrew Upton.DISC ONE: Mahler: Symphony No. 5 in C-Sharp Minor – II composed by Gustav Mahler, performed by Berlin Philharmonic and conducted by Claudio Abbado DISC TWO: Bésame Mucho by Trio Los Panchos DISC THREE: Tannhäuser: Pilgrims' Chorus composed by Richard Wagner and performed by Norman Luboff Choir, New Symphony Orchestra of London, conducted by Leopold Stokowski DISC FOUR: Go Tell the Women by Grinderman DISC FIVE: Proof by I am Kloot DISC SIX: Blow the Wind Southerly by Kathleen Ferrier DISC SEVEN: The Little Weaver Bird by Molly Drake DISC EIGHT: Lil' Darlin' by Count Basie And His OrchestraBOOK CHOICE: Hope in the Dark by Rebecca Solnit LUXURY ITEM: Time CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Tannhäuser: Pilgrims' Chorus composed by Richard Wagner and performed by Norman Luboff Choir, New Symphony Orchestra of London, conducted by Leopold StokowskiPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
08/01/2338m 5s

Edward Enninful, editor

Edward Enninful is the editor-in-chief of British Vogue and the editorial director of Vogue in Europe.Edward was born in the port city of Takoradi in Ghana in 1972. His father was a major in the Ghanaian army and, following a period of political instability, the family fled the country and settled in London. Edward’s interest in fashion dates back to his childhood in Ghana when he watched his seamstress mother at work making dresses for clients including the President’s wife. As a teenager in London he was spotted by the stylist Simon Foxton and began modelling for the irreverent fashion magazine i-D. At 18 Edward became the magazine’s fashion director, the youngest person ever to hold this post at an international fashion title.In 2017 Edward became editor-in-chief of British Vogue and since his appointment he has championed inclusivity and diversity. His cover stars have included Rihanna, Oprah Winfrey and he recently featured the first man – actor Timothée Chalamet. Edward was awarded an OBE for services to diversity in the fashion industry in 2016. He married his partner Alec Maxwell this year and they live in London with their dog Ru.DISC ONE: Kyenkyen Bi Adi Mawu by Alhaji K Frimpong DISC TWO: Song to the Siren by This Mortal Coil DISC THREE: Strange Fruit by Nina Simone DISC FOUR: Back to Life by Soul II Soul DISC FIVE: Ex-Factor by Lauryn Hill DISC SIX: Stars of Track & Field by Belle and Sebastian DISC SEVEN: Peru by Fireboy DML & Ed Sheeran DISC EIGHT: Love Without Tragedy/Mother Mary by RihannaBOOK CHOICE: Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson LUXURY ITEM: A pair of embroidered slippers CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Strange Fruit by Nina Simone Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
01/01/2336m 8s

Baz Luhrmann, director

Baz Luhrmann is an Australian director whose debut film, Strictly Ballroom, became one of Australia’s most successful releases, and also inspired the title of the BBC’s popular Saturday night dance show. He went on to direct Romeo + Juliet, Moulin Rouge!, the Great Gatsby and, more recently, Elvis starring Tom Hanks and Austin Butler. Baz was born Mark Andrew Luhrmann in 1962. His friends nicknamed him Baz after the puppet Basil Brush because of his unruly hair. When he was five the family moved to Herons Creek, a remote settlement in New South Wales. Several years later Baz started ballroom dancing after he picked up a leaflet advertising classes while travelling on a bus. At drama school in Sydney he devised a play called Strictly Ballroom with his fellow students and later wrote a screenplay with his school friend Craig Pearce. The film was screened at the Cannes Film Festival in 1992 where it received a rapturous response and went on to win eight Australian Film Institute awards and three BAFTAs. Baz’s most recent film, Elvis, tells the life of Elvis Presley from the perspective of his infamous manager Colonel Tom Parker, played by Tom Hanks. The film has been a commercial success – making almost $300 million around the world to date. In addition to making feature films Baz has directed theatre and opera productions. He lives mainly in New York with his wife and frequent collaborator, the production designer Catherine Martin, and their two children. DISC ONE: Changes by David Bowie DISC TWO: One by John Farnham DISC THREE: Spanish Flea by Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass DISC FOUR: Suspicious Minds by Elvis Presley DISC FIVE: Puccini: La Boheme / Act 1 - 'Che gelida manina' by Luciano Pavarotti DISC SIX: Unfinished Sympathy by Massive Attack DISC SEVEN: Lady Marmalade by Christina Aguilera, Lil' Kim, MYA, Pink DISC EIGHT: No Church in the Wild by JAY Z, Kanye West, Frank Ocean, The-Dream BOOK CHOICE: War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy LUXURY ITEM: A silk eye mask CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Puccini: La Boheme / Act 1 - 'Che gelida manina' by Luciano Pavarotti Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
25/12/2236m 7s

Barry Hearn, sports promoter

Barry Hearn is a promoter who has been at the forefront of some of the biggest snooker, boxing and darts events in the last 40 years. He played a central role in turning snooker into a television phenomenon, and as a boxing promoter he represented Chris Eubank and Nigel Benn. He later turned darts players, including Phil 'The Power' Taylor, into household names.Barry was born in Dagenham in East London in 1948 and grew up in a council house. At school, he enjoyed playing cricket and football, but freely admits he wasn’t good enough to become a professional player. Instead, he became an accountant and when one of the companies he worked for asked him to find some investment properties, he bought a chain of snooker halls. Barry took advantage of the snooker boom of the 1970s - which started after the BBC began televising competitions - and signed a young Steve Davis. Steve went on to win the World Snooker Championship in 1981 and Barry formed his company Matchroom the following year. He consolidated his success by moving into boxing and then introduced darts to a mainstream audience. In 2021 Barry was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Sport Industry Awards, and also handed over the chairmanship of Matchroom to his son Eddie. His daughter Katie also works for the company. Barry is reluctant to retire just yet, and remains company president, where his new role has given him some more free time to enjoy one of his favourite activities – fishing.DISC ONE: The Gambler by Kenny Rogers DISC TWO: Sweet Home Chicago by The Blues Brothers DISC THREE: Sunshine On My Shoulders by John Denver DISC FOUR: The Lonesome Boatman by Finbar & Eddie Furey DISC FIVE: Snooker Loopy by Chas 'n' Dave DISC SIX: The Best by Tina Turner DISC SEVEN: American Pie by Don McLean DISC EIGHT: Forest Lawn by Tom Paxton BOOK CHOICE: The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway LUXURY ITEM: A fishing rod and rocking chair CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Sunshine On My Shoulders by John Denver Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
18/12/2235m 33s

Professor Jean Golding, epidemiologist

Professor Jean Golding is an epidemiologist who is best known for founding the Children of the Nineties study - more formally known as the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children. The most detailed project of its kind anywhere in the world, it has followed the lives of children who were born in Avon during 1991 and 1992 and helped scientists make important discoveries about everything from peanut allergy to the effects of long Covid.Jean was born in Cornwall in 1939. As a toddler she suffered two bouts of tuberculosis and spent several weeks in hospital. Then at 13 she contracted polio, leading to a three-month hospital stay. After graduating in mathematics from Oxford University, her first job involved completing calculations for the 1958 perinatal mortality survey, set up to collect information about the social and obstetric factors associated with stillbirth and death in early infancy. By the time she started designing the Children of the Nineties study, Jean was well used to working with large data-sets, but the new project was bigger than ever. It collected more than 1.5m biological samples including blood, placenta, hair, nails and teeth along with thousands of questionnaires. As well as expanding medical knowledge, the study has influenced government policy.Jean retired from the study in 2005. She was awarded an OBE for services to medical science in 2012 and today is Emeritus Professor of Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology at the University of Bristol. DISC ONE: The ‘Trelawny’ National Anthem by The Fisherman’s Friends DISC TWO: Under Milk Wood (Part 1) read by Richard Burton DISC THREE: Bad Penny Blues by Humphrey Lyttelton DISC FOUR: Dawn Chorus by BBC Sound Effects DISC FIVE: The Hippopotamus Song by Flanders & Swann DISC SIX: A Hymn to Him by Rex Harrison DISC SEVEN: Piano Quintet in A Major, Op. Posth. 114, D. 667 "The Trout": I. Allegro vivace by Melos Ensemble DISC EIGHT: Bring Me Sunshine by Morecambe and Wise BOOK CHOICE: The Oxford Book of Twentieth-century English Verse LUXURY ITEM: A mobility power chair CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Dawn Chorus by BBC Sound Effects Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
11/12/2236m 0s

Richard E Grant, actor

Richard E Grant was born in Swaziland, now Eswatini, one of the smallest countries in Africa, and took his first steps as an actor as a teenager in the local amateur theatre company.He studied Drama and English at Cape Town University in South Africa, and moved to London in 1982, hoping to find work as an actor, with - in his words - 'nothing more than a couple of suitcases, a boxful of music cassettes and blind ambition.' He worked as a waiter to pay the bills, until his very first film role, in Withnail and I, launched his acting career. Since then, he has appeared in a very wide range of films, with roles in How to Get Ahead in Advertising, The Player, Jack and Sarah, Logan and Everybody’s Talking About Jamie, as well as the Star Wars series. He was nominated for an Oscar in 2019 for his role in Can You Ever Forgive Me? Richard has been a lifelong diarist and has published three collections of memoirs. His most recent book chronicles his long and happy marriage to his wife, the dialect coach Joan Washington, who died from cancer in 2021.DISC ONE: I'm The Greatest Star by Barbra Streisand DISC TWO: When I Fall in Love by Nat King Cole DISC THREE: When a Man Loves a Woman by Percy Sledge DISC FOUR: Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) by Eurythmics DISC FIVE: Chopin: 24 Préludes, Op. 28 - 4. Largo in E Minor by Ivo Pogorelich DISC SIX: Please Forgive Me by Patrick Doyle DISC SEVEN: Fields of Gold by Eva Cassidy DISC EIGHT: Don't Rain on My Parade by Barbra Streisand BOOK CHOICE: Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll LUXURY ITEM: A piano CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: When I Fall in Love by Nat King Cole Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
04/12/2235m 57s

Professor Angela Gallop, forensic scientist

Professor Angela Gallop is a forensic scientist who has helped solve some of the most notorious violent crimes in recent British history including the killings of Stephen Lawrence, Damilola Taylor and Rachel Nickell.After completing a degree in botany and a doctorate on the biochemistry of sea slugs, Angela joined the Home Office’s Forensic Science Service in 1974, and four years later attended her first crime scene, where 18-year-old Helen Rytka was killed by Peter Sutcliffe, the Yorkshire Ripper.Over the years cold cases became her speciality and in 1992 she investigated the death of the Italian banker Roberto Calvi. He was found hanging from scaffolding under Blackfriars Bridge, London, in a suspected suicide ten years before. Angela’s work established that suicide was unlikely and that, in all probability, he’d been murdered. His killers were never found.In 1999 Angela and her team investigated the murder of Lynette White who was killed in her flat in Cardiff in 1988. Five men had been tried for her death and three - known as the ‘the Cardiff Three’ - were sent to prison although their convictions were quashed by the Court of Appeal two years later. Angela’s investigation made history when the murderer was identified and convicted through his familial DNA. Angela first worked on the Stephen Lawrence case in 1995 – two years after his murder - and returned to it in 2006. The forensic evidence that was found during this investigation helped to convict his killers in 2012.Angela has written a book about her career in forensics and another which outlines the challenges the discipline faces today. Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
27/11/2238m 11s

Rick Rubin, music producer

Rick Rubin is a multiple Grammy-winning record producer who has worked with a wide range of artists including Adele, the Beastie Boys and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. He also reinvigorated the career of Johnny Cash in the 1990s, with a series of acclaimed stripped-back albums, introducing the legendary Man in Black to a new audience. Rick was born on Long Island in New York in 1963. As a teenager, his first love was punk, but he soon became entranced by New York’s emerging rap scene and started hanging out in hip hop clubs to discover more about what was then considered to be an underground form of music. In 1984 he co-founded Def Jam Recordings from his dorm room at university and produced rap records for T La Rock and LL Cool J.Together with his business partner, promoter Russell Simmons, Rick took rap into the mainstream by putting rappers Run-DMC and rock band Aerosmith together to cover Aerosmith’s Walk This Way. It enjoyed international success and became hip hop’s first crossover hit.In 1993 Rick approached the country singer Johnny Cash about working together. By that time Johnny, who was in his sixties, had been dropped by his record label and was performing at dinner theatres to small audiences. In his mind his career was over. Rick persuaded him to record again and released the album American Recordings in 1994. Lauded by the critics, the album led to a creative collaboration that lasted until Johnny’s death in 2003. Rick's more recent work includes the album The New Abnormal by the Strokes, which won the band their first ever Grammy last year. DISC ONE: Across the Universe by The Beatles DISC TWO: …And at the Hour of Death by Víkingur Ólafsson DISC THREE: Rockaway Beach by The Ramones DISC FOUR: Us V Them by LCD Sound System DISC FIVE: I Believe in You by Neil Young DISC SIX: Holy Affirming, Holy Denying, Holy Reconciling by Thomas De Hartmann DISC SEVEN: The Dangling Conversation by Simon & Garfunkel DISC EIGHT: The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face by Roberta Flack BOOK CHOICE: The Red Book by Carl Jung LUXURY ITEM: Tarot cards CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Holy Affirming, Holy Denying, Holy Reconciling by Thomas De Hartmann Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
20/11/2236m 40s

Maxine Peake, actor

Maxine Peake is an actor and writer who first came to public attention in 1998 as Twinkle in the Victoria Wood sitcom Dinnerladies. She went on to play Veronica in Paul Abbott’s series Shameless and later became known for playing real people, including the Hillsborough campaigner Anne Williams, and Sara Rowbotham, the former health worker who exposed the sexual abuse scandal in Rochdale in 2012. Maxine was born in Bolton and after a rocky start at college – she was asked to leave her performing arts course after just two weeks but stuck it out – she won a scholarship to study at RADA. Three months before she was due to graduate she auditioned for Victoria Wood and won her first television role starring alongside Wood, Julie Walters and Anne Reid.Victoria Wood advised her to take on a diverse range of roles in order to avoid being typecast as what Maxine calls the “fat, funny northerner”. She took the advice to heart and extended her range playing Myra Hindley, Martha Costello QC in the legal drama Silk and Hamlet in a critically acclaimed production at the Royal Exchange theatre in Manchester. Maxine has also written plays including Beryl: A Love Story on Two Wheels about Beryl Burton, a Yorkshire woman who dominated 1960s cycling and held the record for the men’s 12-hour time trial for two years. DISC ONE: Mersey Paradise by The Stone Roses DISC TWO: Puff the Magic Dragon by Bonnie "Prince" Billy and Red DISC THREE: Joe Hill by Paul Robeson DISC FOUR: The Four Horsemen by Aphrodite’s Child DISC FIVE: Evening of Light by Nico DISC SIX: Promised Land by Joe Smooth DISC SEVEN: A Whistling Woman by The Unthanks DISC EIGHT: I Saw the Light by Todd Rundgren BOOK CHOICE: One Moonlit Night by Caradog Prichard LUXURY ITEM: A solar-powered epilator CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Joe Hill by Paul Robeson Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
13/11/2234m 32s

Kevin Sinfield, rugby player

Kevin Sinfield OBE is one of the most decorated players in the history of English rugby league. He captained Leeds Rhinos and the England team, and was runner-up in the BBC Sports Personality of the Year poll in 2015. He holds records as the highest points-scorer in Super League history, the third-highest points-scorer in British rugby league history and the record points-scorer for Leeds. After retiring from playing, he switched codes and is currently part of the coaching staff at Leicester Tigers rugby union team. Off the pitch he has made headlines as a fundraiser. After his former team-mate Rob Burrow was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in 2019, Kevin began a series of epic fundraising challenges. He completed seven marathons in seven days in 2020, and then in 2021 he ran 101 miles in 24 hours, raising millions for MND research and support. He lives in Oldham with his wife, Jane and his two sons. DISC ONE: Parry: Jerusalem by The Honley Male Voice Choir & The Band of HM Royal Marines DISC TWO: Come on Eileen by Dexy's Midnight Runners DISC THREE: Someone Like You by Van Morrison DISC FOUR: 7 Days by Craig David DISC FIVE: I Think We're Alone Now by Tiffany DISC SIX: Baker Street by Undercover DISC SEVEN: Last Request by Paolo Nutini DISC EIGHT: Fix You by ColdplayBOOK CHOICE: The Edge: The Guide to Fulfilling Dreams, Maximizing Success and Enjoying a Lifetime of Achievement by Howard E. Ferguson LUXURY ITEM: A Self-propelled treadmill CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Last Request by Paolo Nutini Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
06/11/2236m 35s

Dr Waheed Arian, doctor

Dr Waheed Arian is a radiologist who set up a charity called Arian Teleheal in 2015. The charity enables volunteer doctors in the west to advise colleagues in conflict zones using smartphone technology. The charity has helped save many lives in countries including Syria, Uganda and Afghanistan where Waheed was born.In 1988, at the height of the Soviet-Afghan conflict, Waheed and his family fled Kabul for Pakistan where they lived in a refugee camp for the next few years. Waheed was just five when they arrived there and contracted tuberculosis. The doctor who saved his life planted a dream and Waheed decided that one day he would study medicine.When he was 15 Afghanistan was in the grip of the Taliban and Waheed and his parents knew it was only a matter of time before he would be recruited to join their fight. Waheed's family found someone who, for a fee, offered to help him leave the country and claim refugee status in the UK. He arrived in the UK in 1999, studied A levels while working in a number of jobs and then in 2003 took up a place to read medicine at Cambridge University.In 2014 he began training as a radiologist and currently works in the A&E department at a busy NHS hospital. In 2017 he won a UN Global Hero Award for his charity work. DISC ONE: Lose Yourself by Eminem DISC TWO: Gule Sori by Farhad Darya DISC THREE: Eye of the Tiger by Survivor DISC FOUR: Never Enough by Loren Allred DISC FIVE: Home by Michael Bublé DISC SIX: Fly by Celine Dion DISC SEVEN: Are You Ready for Love by Elton John DISC EIGHT: Everything I Wanted by Billie Eilish BOOK CHOICE: The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by Bryan Mealer and William Kamkwamba LUXURY ITEM: Pen and paper CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Fly by Celine Dion Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
30/10/2234m 53s

Jay Blades, presenter and furniture restorer

Jay Blades is a furniture restorer who is best known for presenting the Repair Shop on BBC One. The programme, which attracts many millions of viewers, brings old and damaged family treasures back to life and has been praised for its celebration of craftsmanship and the values of kindness and patience.Jay grew up in Hackney in East London and was brought up by his mother Barbara. He struggled to read as a young boy which held him back at school and he left at 16. Years later, after he got a place to study criminology and philosophy at university, he was diagnosed with dyslexia at the age of 31. He worked as a community worker for many years and co-founded charities which helped disadvantaged young people learn new skills. One of his charities was based in High Wycombe – an area famous for its historic furniture trade – and Jay learned how to restore furniture alongside the teenagers he was helping.Later he started his own furniture restoration business and in 2017 he started presenting the Repair Shop. He recently set up his own television production company and has written books about DIY and his experiences on the Repair shop. In 2021 he was awarded an MBE for services to craft.DISC ONE: Help Me Make It Through the Night by John Holt DISC TWO: The Night I Fell In Love by Luther Vandross DISC THREE: Revolution by Dennis Brown DISC FOUR: Battle by Wookie DISC FIVE: Love You Anyway by Cameo DISC SIX: Baby I’m A Fool by Melody Gardot DISC SEVEN: Kisses Don’t Lie by Evelyn “Champagne” King DISC EIGHT: Take Me To The Alley by Gregory PorterBOOK CHOICE: The Autobiography of Malcolm X by Malcolm X with Alex Haley LUXURY ITEM: A reclining massage chair CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Help Me Make It Through the Night by John Holt Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
23/10/2236m 5s

Sue Barker, presenter and tennis player

Sue Barker is a television presenter and former professional tennis player. She presented the BBC’s Wimbledon coverage for nearly three decades, before stepping down this year, when she received a standing ovation. Sue was born in Devon in 1956, and was educated at the Marist Convent School where she had a reputation for being naughty – until her PE teacher, Mrs Chadwick, diverted her energy into tennis. Aged 11 she was selected for training by the local tennis coach Arthur Roberts, who had already guided players to Grand Slam titles. Sue started playing – and winning – junior tournaments. She turned professional at 17, and moved to the US, joining a new women’s tour set up by Billie Jean King. During her career, she reached the ranking of World No. 3, playing and defeating her contemporaries, including Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova, Evonne Goolagong and Virginia Wade. Her biggest win came at the French Open in 1976 where, aged 20, she took her first – and only – Grand Slam title. Her biggest disappointment came at Wimbledon the following year, when she lost in the semi-final, despite being the clear favourite. Plagued by injuries, she retired from tennis in 1985. She began commentating on Australia’s Channel 7, before moving to BskyB in the UK, and then joining the BBC in 1993. She has hosted Wimbledon, Grandstand, the Summer and Winter Olympics, the Commonwealth Games, BBC Sports Personality of the Year, and A Question of Sport. When she announced her retirement from TV, her idol Billie Jean King called her the GOAT, the ‘greatest of all time’. DISC ONE: Run Boy Run by Woodkid DISC TWO: Piano Concerto in A minor, composed by Edvard Grieg and performed by Sir Clifford Curzon (piano) and London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Øivin Fjeldstad DISC THREE: Harry Hippie by Bobby Womack DISC FOUR: California Girls by The Beach Boys DISC FIVE: The Greatest Love of All by George Benson DISC SIX: Simply Beautiful by Al Green DISC SEVEN: Grandstand by Keith Mansfield DISC EIGHT: Philadelphia Freedom by Elton John BOOK CHOICE: All In by Billie Jean King LUXURY ITEM: New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc wine CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Harry Hippie by Bobby Womack Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Katy Hickman
16/10/2236m 16s

John Legend, musician

The American singer and songwriter John Legend has won two Emmys, 12 Grammys, an Oscar and a Tony award – making him one of only 16 living artists to have won all four honours. One of his songs, All of Me, written for his wife, the model Chrissy Teigen, has been streamed more than four billion times on digital platforms. He was born John Stephens in Springfield, Ohio into a musical family. His father played drums in church, where his mother conducted the choir. John took piano lessons from an early age and soon became involved in arranging music for the church.He attended university at the age of 16 and after graduating worked as a management consultant for four years, while pursuing his interest in music out of office hours. He signed his first record deal after working with Kanye West early in his career, and took on the stage name John Legend, releasing his first solo album in 2004. Alongside his musical career, he has acted on TV and film, including a role in the highly successful La La Land. He has performed at three Presidential inauguration ceremonies – for President Obama in 2009 and 2013, and for President Biden in 2021. John lives in the USA with his wife and their two children.DISC ONE: Here Comes the Sun by Nina Simone DISC TWO: They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.) by Pete Rock & CL Smooth DISC THREE: Day Dreaming by Aretha Franklin DISC FOUR: Roc Boys (And the Winner is…) by Jay-Z DISC FIVE: As by Stevie Wonder DISC SIX: Love on Top by Beyonce DISC SEVEN: L-O-V-E by Nat King Cole DISC EIGHT: Superfly by Curtis Mayfield BOOK CHOICE: The Dawn of Everything: A New History of Humanity by David Graeber & David Wengrow LUXURY ITEM: A piano CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Here Comes the Sun by Nina Simone Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
03/09/2235m 27s

Clare Smyth, chef

Clare Smyth is a highly acclaimed chef and is the first British woman to win the coveted three Michelin stars for her work. She opened her London restaurant, Core, in 2017, and before that she ran Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, which also held three Michelin stars.Clare was born in County Antrim, Northern Ireland, and grew up on a farm, where her love of simple ingredients was nurtured. The youngest of three children, she discovered a passion for cooking and decided to make it her career from an early age.She left home at 16, moving to England to take a catering course at a college in Portsmouth. Her ambition was to work with the finest chefs, and after completing her course and apprenticeship, she went on to cook in some of the most acclaimed kitchens in the world, including Le Louis XV under Alain Ducasse in Monaco. She returned to London to work in Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, at the invitation of the proprietor, and became the first British woman to run a three Michelin-starred kitchen.Her many awards include the title of the World's Best Female Chef in 2018, and she received an MBE for services to the hospitality industry in 2013. She also found herself in the spotlight in 2018 as the caterer for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. She lives in London with her husband.DISC ONE: Sweet Child O’ Mine by Guns N’ Roses DISC TWO: Zombie by The Cranberries DISC THREE: Don’t Look Back in Anger by Oasis DISC FOUR: Common People by Pulp DISC FIVE: Set Fire to the Rain by Adele DISC SIX: Maria by Blondie DISC SEVEN: Brass in Pocket by Pretenders DISC EIGHT: Circle of Life by Carmen Twillie and Lebo M. BOOK CHOICE: The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien LUXURY ITEM: A chef’s knife CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Circle of Life by Carmen Twillie and Lebo M.Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
28/08/2235m 50s

Kate Moss, model

Kate Moss came to fame in the 1990s, and her distinctive look went on to embody the era of Cool Britannia. She has appeared on the cover of hundreds of magazines and starred in campaigns for many of the top fashion houses. She has made cameos on film and television and inspired artists including Lucian Freud, Tracey Emin and Marc Quinn. Kate was born in Croydon in 1974. When she was 14, she was spotted at JFK airport by Sarah Doukas who signed her to her modelling agency. Two years later Kate was on the cover of the style magazine the Face – one of a series of photographs shot on Camber Sands by Corinne Day. The images were raw and natural and Kate’s slight, delicate build, in stark contrast to the curvaceous supermodel silhouette that had defined the decade, heralded a new era in modelling. Kate moved on to high profile campaigns for the designers Calvin Klein and Marc Jacobs. In 1993 she appeared on the cover of British Vogue for the first time. Later her waif-like figure attracted criticism from some commentators who thought some of her photographs glamorised thinness. In 2013 Kate received a Special Recognition award at the British Fashion Awards, acknowledging her 25-year contribution to fashion. Kate set up her own talent agency in 2016 and one of the agency’s first signings was her daughter Lila.DISC ONE: Back to Life by Sunday Service and Jazzie B (Soul II Soul mix) DISC TWO: A Whiter Shade of Pale (Live) by King Curtis DISC THREE: Harvest Moon by Neil Young DISC FOUR: Life on Mars by David Bowie DISC FIVE: Oh! Sweet Nuthin’ by The Velvet Underground DISC SIX: Sympathy for the Devil by The Rolling Stones DISC SEVEN: My Sweet Lord by George Harrison DISC EIGHT: Madame George by Van MorrisonBOOK CHOICE: The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry LUXURY ITEM: A cashmere blanket CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: My Sweet Lord by George HarrisonPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
21/08/2235m 34s

Kate Ewart-Biggs, Deputy Chief Executive, British Council

Kate Ewart-Biggs is the deputy chief executive of the British Council, which aims to build connections between the UK and countries worldwide, through education programmes, language learning and cultural activities. Kate was born into a diplomatic family and her early childhood years were spent in France and Belgium. In 1976, when she was eight years old, her father Christopher Ewart-Biggs was appointed British ambassador to Ireland. Two weeks into his new job, he was killed by an IRA landmine. Kate's mother Jane moved the family back to London and began to campaign for peace and reconciliation in Ireland: she became a life peer in 1981. After studying anthropology at university, Kate worked on charity projects for street children in Brazil and South Africa before joining the British Council. Her career has taken her all around the world including postings in Uganda, Tanzania and Indonesia.She lives in London with her daughter.DISC ONE: I Could Have Danced All Night by My Fair Lady Orchestra, My Fair Lady Chorus, Marni Nixon (soprano), André Previn (conductor), Mona Washbourne (played Mrs. Pearce), My Fair Lady Original Motion Picture Cast and Warner Brothers Studio Orchestra DISC TWO: Et Si Tu N’existais Pas by Joe Dassin DISC THREE: Mr Tambourine Man by Bob Dylan DISC FOUR: I Don’t Like Mondays by The Boomtown Rats DISC FIVE: Lambada by Kaoma DISC SIX: Namagembe by Madoxx Sematimba DISC SEVEN: I And Love And You by The Avett Brothers DISC EIGHT: American Pie by Don McLean BOOK CHOICE: The Complete Novels of Jane Austen LUXURY ITEM: An asthma inhaler CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Mr. Tambourine Man by Bob Dylan Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
13/08/2235m 54s

Andrew Ramroop, tailor

Andrew Ramroop is a Savile Row tailor, whose international client list has included film stars and royalty.Andrew grew up in a remote village in Trinidad and sewed his first garment at the age of nine, creating a simple pair of trousers from a pillowcase. He left school at 13 and was apprenticed to a local tailor who told him tales about the pinnacle of sartorial excellence, Savile Row – the place where James Bond’s suits were cut. Inspired by this vision, Andrew saved up for a ticket to sail to the UK: he emigrated at the age of 17, only the second person to leave his village. He found work on Savile Row, went on to complete a degree at the London College of Fashion, and then gained a job at Maurice Sedwell, eventually taking over the business when Maurice retired.In recent years, Andrew has been closely involved in training the next generation of tailors. He was awarded an OBE in 2009, for his work in tailoring and training, and was the UK’s Black Business Person of the Year in 2017. DISC ONE: Portrait of Trinidad by The Mighty Sniper DISC TWO: Another Brick In The Wall, Pt. 2 by Pink Floyd DISC THREE: Time Will Tell by Jimmy Cliff DISC FOUR: The Boxer by Simon & Garfunkel DISC FIVE: It's a Man's Man's Man's World by James Brown & The Famous Flames DISC SIX: Desiderata by Les Crane DISC SEVEN: Maria La O by Neil Latchman DISC EIGHT: Bridge Over Troubled Water by Simon & Garfunkel BOOK CHOICE: Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace LUXURY ITEM: A tenor steel pan drum CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Bridge Over Troubled Water by Simon & Garfunkel Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
06/08/2236m 21s

Adele, singer and songwriter

Adele is a singer and songwriter who has achieved record-breaking sales and global recognition for her four albums which document her life from the age of 19 onwards. Her cache of awards includes 15 Grammys and nine BRITs. She also won a Golden Globe and an Academy Award for the James Bond theme Skyfall which she co-wrote. She was born Adele Laurie Blue Adkins in London in 1988. In 2002 she won a place at the BRIT School for Performing Arts where she studied music and developed her performing and song writing skills. In her final year a friend posted her three-song demo online which attracted the attention of several record companies.In 2006 Adele signed to XL Recordings and the following year she released her first single, Hometown Glory. In 2008 she released her debut album, 19, and the following year she won Grammy Awards for Best New Artist and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance. Her next two albums 21 and 25 consolidated her superstar status. In 2013 she was appointed an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for services to music. Adele’s fourth album, 30, was released in 2021. The songs addressed how she was adjusting to life post-divorce and her feelings about her new role as a co-parent. Adele lives in Los Angeles with her son.DISC ONE: Roam by The B-52's DISC TWO: Dreams by Gabrielle DISC THREE: Need Somebody by Shola Ama DISC FOUR: He Needs Me by Nina Simone DISC FIVE: Bills Bills Bills by Destiny’s Child DISC SIX: I’d Rather Go Blind by Etta James DISC SEVEN: Maps by Yeah Yeah Yeahs DISC EIGHT: For All We Know by Donny Hathaway BOOK CHOICE: The Sun and Her Flowers by Rupi Kaur LUXURY ITEM: A self-inflating mattress CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Dreams by Gabrielle Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
31/07/2236m 10s

Bono, singer and songwriter

Bono is a singer, songwriter and the frontman of U2, one of the most recognisable and successful bands in music history. They have sold over 170 million albums, won 22 Grammys – more than any other band – and two Golden Globe Awards. Bono is also known for his work as an activist, especially in Africa where he has played a prominent role in campaigns which tackle poverty and HIV/AIDs. Bono was born Paul Hewson in Dublin in 1960. A schoolfriend named him Bono after a hearing aid shop in Dublin called Bono Vox, and the name stuck. When he was 16, Bono saw a poster on his school noticeboard posted by Larry Mullen Jr asking for people to form a rock band. He responded with enthusiasm and before long was rehearsing with his future bandmates Larry, who played the drums, guitarist the Edge and bassist Adam Clayton. The band’s debut album Boy came out in 1980 and five years later they made an impact at the Live Aid concert at Wembley Stadium when Bono disappeared from the stage for two minutes to get up close to the audience. One newspaper later described this incident as one of the 50 key events in rock history. U2's subsequent albums, including the Joshua Tree, Rattle and Hum and Achtung Baby, cemented their status as global superstars, filling arenas around the world. In 2004 Bono co-founded One, an international campaigning organisation which was set up with the aim of ending extreme poverty and preventable disease by 2030. Bono met his future wife, Ali, at school when they were both teenagers. They married in 1982 and have four children. DISC ONE: Show Me The Way by Peter Frampton DISC TWO: Every Grain Of Sand by Bob Dylan DISC THREE: Abide With Me by Emeli Sande and The Fron Choir DISC FOUR: Dead In The Water (Live At RTÉ 2FM Studios, Dublin) by Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds DISC FIVE: Ice Cream Sundae by Inhaler DISC SIX: Agolo by Angelique Kidjo DISC SEVEN: Verdi: La traviata Prelude to Act 1, composed by Giuseppe Verdi and performed by Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, conducted by James Levine DISC EIGHT: Someone Somewhere in Summertime by Simple MindsBOOK CHOICE: Ulysses by James Joyce LUXURY ITEM: A Spanish guitar CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Every Grain Of Sand by Bob Dylan Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
24/07/2236m 5s

Rita Tushingham, actor

Rita Tushingham first won international acclaim as a teenager, playing Jo in the film A Taste of Honey. Her performance in this 1961 kitchen sink drama earned her a BAFTA, a Golden Globe and the Best Actress award at the Cannes Film Festival. She starting shooting the film on her 19th birthday. She went on to play roles in the Leather Boys, the Knack… and How to Get it and Doctor Zhivago. Now 80, she continues to perform and recently appeared in two BBC television drama series - Ridley Road and The Responder - and in the film Last Night in Soho. Rita was born in Liverpool and at 16 joined the Liverpool Repertory Company as a student assistant stage manager. Her first role was as the back legs of a horse in Toad of Toad Hall. In 1960 she responded to a newspaper article which invited ‘ugly’ unknown girls to apply for the part of Jo in a film adaptation of Shelagh Delaney's play A Taste of Honey, to be directed by Tony Richardson. The film challenged many taboos of the time, including teenage pregnancy and interracial relationships. After the British film industry went into decline in the 1970s Rita started working in Europe. In 1988 she went back to her roots and played Celia Higgins in Carla Lane’s Liverpool sitcom, Bread. Rita lives in London and is a passionate supporter of Liverpool Football Club. DISC ONE: You’ll Never Walk Alone by Gerry & the Pacemakers DISC TWO: Tutti Frutti by Little Richard DISC THREE: Penny Lane by The Beatles DISC FOUR: Every Time We Say Goodbye by Ella Fitzgerald DISC FIVE: The pas de deux from the second act of Giselle, performed by The Pro Arte Orchestra, conducted by Marcus Dods DISC SIX: Bridge Over Troubled Water by Simon and Garfunkel DISC SEVEN: An extract from I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue - Potted Plots, broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on 22nd May 2006 DISC EIGHT: Hallelujah by Jeff Buckley BOOK CHOICE: Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable LUXURY ITEM: A photograph album CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Bridge Over Troubled Water by Simon and Garfunkel Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
17/07/2235m 7s

Frances O'Grady, General Secretary of the TUC

Frances O’Grady is the General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress (TUC), the UK's umbrella group for unions, representing millions of workers. She is the first woman in the 154 year history of the TUC to hold this post, which she took up in 2013. Frances is the youngest of five children, and was brought up in Oxford. Her family has strong links with the trade union movement: her great grandfather and grandfather were founder members of the Irish Transport and General Workers’ Union, and her father was a shop steward at the British Leyland plant in Cowley. Thanks to strong encouragement from one of her teachers, Frances was the first of her family to go to university, studying History and Politics at Manchester. After graduation, she moved to London and worked in shops and the hospitality industry, becoming a union rep before getting a job at the Transport and General Workers Union. She joined the TUC in 1994 as Campaigns Secretary, became Deputy General Secretary in 2003 and General Secretary a decade later. In 2020, during the pandemic, she worked with the government on the furlough scheme, providing support for workers whose usual employment.In April 2022, she announced that she would step down from her post at the end of this year. DISC ONE: It’s Not Unusual by Tom Jones DISC TWO: Burn It Down by Dexys Midnight Runners DISC THREE: Double Barrel by Dave & Ansell Collins DISC FOUR: Atmosphere by Joy Division DISC FIVE: Funkin' for Jamaica by Tom Browne DISC SIX: Hello Stranger by Barbara Lewis DISC SEVEN: Pieces of a Man by Gil Scott-Heron DISC EIGHT: A Change Is Gonna Come by Sam CookeBOOK CHOICE: History by Elsa Morante LUXURY ITEM: A painting set with edible paints CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Double Barrel by Dave & Ansell Collins Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
10/07/2236m 16s

Jon Ronson, writer and broadcaster

Jon Ronson is a writer and broadcaster whose award-winning podcast and Radio 4 series Things Fell Apart investigated the stories behind today’s culture wars. His television programmes and books – from Them: Adventures with Extremists to So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed - explore what he calls “the worlds that are going on underground” and his subjects - from conspiracy theorists to internet trolls - inhabit the fringes of society. Jon was born in Cardiff in 1967. He started a media studies degree at the Polytechnic of Central London but left after two years to become the keyboard player for the musician and comedian Frank Sidebottom’s Oh Blimey Big Band. He also managed the Manchester indie band Man from Delmonte. He worked as a presenter on KFM Radio with Terry Christian, Caroline Aherne and Craig Cash before moving back to London where he wrote for the listings magazine Time Out and later produced a weekly column about family life for the Guardian. In 1993 he began his television career with a BBC series called the Ronson Mission which he describes as having little adventures and interviewing people who were classed as outsiders by the mainstream. He went on to make programmes about the Ku Klux Klan, the Jesus Christians cult and the First Earth Battalion about a secret New Age unit which was set up within the US Army in the late 1970s.In 2012 Jon moved to New York. He became an American citizen in 2020.DISC ONE: A Message to You Rudy by The Specials DISC TWO: Cabaret sung by Jane Horrocks, from the Sam Mendes production of the musical Cabaret at the Donmar Warehouse, London in 1993 DISC THREE: Underground by Tom Waits DISC FOUR: Drivin’ on 9 by The Breeders DISC FIVE: Simon Smith and the Amazing Dancing Bear by Randy Newman DISC SIX: Extraordinary Machine by Fiona Apple DISC SEVEN: America by Simon & Garfunkel DISC EIGHT: Jersey Girl (Live at Meadowlands Arena, E. Rutherford, New Jersey - July 1981) by Bruce Springsteen & The E Street BandBOOK CHOICE: A Magnum photography book LUXURY ITEM: Legal medical marijuana CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Jersey Girl by Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
03/07/2234m 52s

David Harewood, actor and presenter

David Harewood is a British actor and presenter who found global fame playing the CIA director David Estes in the acclaimed TV drama series Homeland. He was the first black actor to play Othello at the National theatre in 1997 and took the role of Martin Luther King in the Olivier award-winning play The Mountaintop in 2009.David was born in Birmingham in 1965. After one of his teachers suggested that he should try his luck at acting, he won a place at RADA where he tackled a number of challenging roles including King Lear. After graduating, he performed in a range of television and theatre productions, but by the time he auditioned for Homeland he says he was down to his last £80. He joined the cast of Homeland in 2011 and the following year he was awarded an MBE for services to drama.In 2019 he presented a BBC documentary called Psychosis and Me which told the story of the mental breakdown he experienced as a young man. The programme was nominated for a BAFTA award and was praised by critics for its honest exploration of a difficult subject and for helping to remove some of the stigma around mental health. He went on to present a range of documentaries which addressed subjects close to his heart including the health inequality exposed by the Covid-19 pandemic and the experience of slavery within the history of his own family. David lives in London with his wife and their two daughters. DISC ONE: Exodus by Bob Marley & The Wailers DISC TWO: Tears on My Pillow by Johnny Nash DISC THREE: One in Ten by UB40 DISC FOUR: $29.00 by Tom Waits DISC FIVE: I Still Haven’t found what I’m Looking For by The Chimes DISC SIX: (Sittin’ on) the Dock of the Bay by Otis Redding DISC SEVEN: Cruisin’ by D’Angelo DISC EIGHT: Ain’t Nobody by Rufus and Chaka Khan BOOK CHOICE: The Sandman by Neil Gaiman LUXURY ITEM: A disco dancefloor CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Ain’t Nobody by Rufus and Chaka Khan Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
26/06/2234m 52s

Ellie Simmonds, swimmer

Ellie Simmonds has competed at four Paralympic Games, winning five gold medals and breaking world records on the way. She first came to national attention at the age of 13, when she won two golds at the Beijing 2008 Paralympics, and became the youngest person ever to be awarded an MBE a few months later. Ellie is the youngest of five children and was born with achondroplasia, a form of dwarfism. Swimming was central to her life from a very early age, and her ambition to compete at the highest level was sparked by watching the Athens 2004 Paralympics on TV at the age of nine, when her mother told her she could take part at any age, as long as she was good enough. She became the face of the London 2012 Paralympics and won a further two gold medals, followed by another gold in Rio in 2016. Shortly after taking part in the Tokyo Paralympics last year, she announced her retirement from competitive swimming at the age of 26.She recently presented TV documentaries on conservation and on the controversies surrounding drug treatments for achondroplasia.DISC ONE: Proud by Heather Small DISC TWO: Own It by Stormzy ft Ed Sheeran and Burna Boy DISC THREE: Toxic by Britney Spears DISC FOUR: Lose Yourself by Eminem DISC FIVE: Paradise by Coldplay DISC SIX: Walking on Sunshine by Katrina and the Waves DISC SEVEN: Unforgettable by French Montana feat. Swae Lee DISC EIGHT: Rocket Man by Elton JohnBOOK CHOICE: The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins LUXURY ITEM: A diary and pen CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Rocket Man by Elton John Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
18/06/2234m 11s

Bradley Walsh, presenter and actor

Bradley Walsh is a familiar face to many millions of TV viewers, as the host of quiz shows including The Chase and Blankety-Blank, and as an actor in dramas such as Doctor Who and The Larkins.Bradley was born in Watford and after leaving school at 16 he was apprenticed to the local Rolls-Royce factory as a jet engineer. A keen footballer, he signed to Brentford FC when he was 19 but his career was cut short by injury after only two seasons with the club.He dealt with this blow by turning his attention to the entertainment business. He worked as a Pontin’s Bluecoat and then tried his luck as a stand-up comedian - doing impressions and telling jokes at working men’s clubs. In 1986 he turned professional, and his first booking was a stint at the Pavilion Theatre on Cromer Pier. Later he became the support act for performers including Dame Shirley Bassey, Leo Sayer and Sir Tom Jones.In 1997 he hosted the quiz show Wheel of Fortune and three years later got his first acting role in the Channel 4 series Lock Stock….a spin-off from Guy Ritchie’s 1998 feature film Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. He followed this up with roles in Coronation Street, Law & Order: UK and Doctor WhoBradley released his debut album Chasing Dreams, featuring his interpretations of popular standards, in 2016. In that year it became the biggest-selling debut album by a British artist.Bradley lives in Essex with his wife Donna and their son Barney who appears alongside him in the television series Bradley & Barney Walsh: Breaking Dad.DISC ONE: Life on Mars? by David Bowie DISC TWO: March of the Mods by Joe Loss Orchestra DISC THREE: Bye Bye Baby by Bay City Rollers DISC FOUR: I’m Mandy Fly Me by 10cc DISC FIVE: Firefly by Tony Bennett DISC SIX: The Hungry Years by Neil Sedaka DISC SEVEN: Always and Forever by Heatwave DISC EIGHT: That’s Life (Remastered 2008) by Frank Sinatra BOOK CHOICE: The Count of Monte Christo by Alexandre Dumas LUXURY ITEM: A set of golf clubs and balls CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Always and Forever by Heatwave Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
12/06/2235m 48s

Fiona Hill, foreign affairs specialist

Fiona Hill is a foreign affairs specialist who advised Presidents George W Bush, Barack Obama and Donald Trump. She came to wider public attention in 2019 when she testified against President Trump during his first impeachment.Fiona was born in Bishop Auckland, County Durham. Her father was a former coal miner who worked as a hospital porter and her mother was a midwife. After graduating in Russian and History from St Andrews University, she won a scholarship to read Soviet Studies at Harvard. She spent the next three decades establishing herself as a policy expert on Russia. In 2017 she joined the National Security Council at the White House as deputy assistant to President Trump and senior director for Europe and Russia. She left the administration in 2019 and later that year she testified to the US Congress as a witness in the hearings which led up to Donald Trump’s first impeachment trial in 2020. Fiona’s performance and North East accent caused a stir and her personal story was discussed in American newspapers and on television. Strangers in the street thanked her, but she also received death threats from people who opposed the observations she recounted during her testimony. Fiona is a senior research fellow at the Brookings Institution, a think tank based in Washington DC. She became an American citizen in 2002. DISC ONE: Message in a Bottle by The Police DISC TWO: It’s only a Paper Moon by Ella Fitzgerald DISC THREE: Ghost Town by The Specials DISC FOUR: The Passenger by Iggy Pop DISC FIVE: Goodbye America by Nautilus Pompilius DISC SIX: On Top of the World by Imagine Dragons DISC SEVEN: Hypersonic Missiles by Sam Fender DISC EIGHT: This is the Day by The TheBOOK CHOICE: Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll Fiona writes about how her dad saved up to buy the Encyclopaedia Britannica – you’ll find the story in the Background section. LUXURY ITEM: Crystallised ginger CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: This is the Day by The ThePresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
05/06/2235m 22s

Desert Island Discoveries

Lauren shares handpicked gems from the Desert Island Discs back-catalogue with Radio 1 presenter Vick Hope, including Bob Mortimer, Maya Angelou, Joe Wicks, Sophia Loren, Tom Hanks, Dame Pat McGrath and Sinéad Burke.
29/05/2230m 9s

Winnie Byanyima, executive director of Unaids

Winnie Byanyima is a human rights advocate and executive director of Unaids, the joint UN Programme which was set up to eradicate Aids as a threat to public health by 2030.Winnie was born in the village of Ruti, in south west Uganda, where her teacher parents raised her and her siblings to follow their example of doing good things for others. From an early age Winnie adopted the family motto of ‘truth and justice’. Winnie fled the country in 1978, during the regime of President Idi Amin, and came to the UK as a refugee. She won a scholarship to study aeronautical engineering at Manchester University, graduating in 1981. She returned home where she found a job as an engineer for Ugandan Airlines while secretly working for Yoweri Museveni’s resistance movement that opposed Amin’s successor, Milton Obote.In 1994 Winnie was elected as an MP in the Ugandan Parliament and was instrumental in drawing up a new constitution for the country. In 2013 she was appointed executive director of Oxfam International and became executive director of Unaids in 2019. She currently lives in Geneva. DISC ONE: Sanyu Lyange by Juliana Kanyomozi DISC TWO: Cantata No. 147: Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring by New London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Leopold Stokowski, with the Norman Luboff Choir DISC THREE: Le Bûcheron by Franklin Boukaka DISC FOUR: Heart of Glass by Blondie DISC FIVE: Umqombothi by Yvonne Chaka Chaka DISC SIX: Steal Away (Remastered) by Nat King Cole DISC SEVEN: Don't Worry Be Happy by Bobby McFerrin DISC EIGHT: I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free by Nina Simone BOOK CHOICE: The Second Sex by Simone De Beauvoir LUXURY ITEM: A basket weaving needle CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free by Nina Simone Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
24/04/2235m 35s

Alan Cumming, actor

Alan Cumming's wide-ranging career on stage includes playing Hamlet, starring opposite Daniel Radcliffe in Samuel Beckett’s Endgame and – perhaps most notably - taking the role of the Emcee in the musical Cabaret in London and New York to great acclaim: his 1998 Broadway performance won seven awards, including a Tony. He’s also appeared in films including GoldenEye and Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut, and in the TV series The Good Wife. Alan was born in Perthshire in 1965. His father was a forester and the family moved to the Panmure estate on the east coast of Scotland. Encouraged by his English teacher, Alan grew up loving drama at school but his childhood was blighted by his violent and abusive father. He worked for the publisher DC Thomson as a sub-editor before going to the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama. There he launched his performing career with fellow student Forbes Masson: together they were Victor and Barry, a comedy and music double-act. They drew on these characters for their BBC TV sit-com The High Life, based around a fictional Scottish airline. Alan has published a novel and three memoirs: his 2014 autobiography Not My Father’s Son detailed his very difficult relationship with his father, both in his early years and later in his life. In 2022 Alan is developing a solo dance-theatre work, focusing on the personal history of the Scottish poet Robert Burns, which he will perform in Scotland and New York. He’s now also the co-owner of a bar, Club Cumming, in Manhattan. DISC ONE: Dignity by Deacon Blue DISC TWO: L’Amour Looks Something Like You by Kate Bush DISC THREE: Barcelona by Freddie Mercury & Montserrat Caballé DISC FOUR: I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) by The Proclaimers DISC FIVE: Whenever Wherever Whatever by Maxwell DISC SIX: Give Me Back My Heart by Dollar DISC SEVEN: Catalani: La Wally : Ebben? ne andrò lontana Act 1 by Maria Callas and Philharmonia Orchestra, conducted by Tullio Serafin DISC EIGHT: These Are My Mountains by Peter Morrison BOOK CHOICE: Desert Gardening for Beginners: How to grow vegetables, flowers, and herbs in an Arid Climate by Cathy Cromell, Linda A. Guy, Lucy K. Bradley LUXURY ITEM: Marijuana seeds CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Give Me Back My Heart by Dollar Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
17/04/2235m 2s

Robert Plant, singer and songwriter

Robert Plant is a singer and songwriter who was Led Zeppelin’s frontman from the band’s inception in 1968 until it disbanded in 1980. Led Zeppelin sold hundreds of millions of albums and in their heyday acquired a reputation for unbridled rock ‘n’ roll hedonism. Since 1980 Robert has gone on to achieve success as a solo artist and has collaborated with other musicians, notably the bluegrass singer Alison Krauss. Their 2007 album Raising Sand won five Grammy Awards. Robert was born in West Bromwich in 1948. At 15 he appeared on stage for the first time as the lead vocalist for a local band after the regular singer fell ill. In 1965 he started performing with the Crawling King Snakes and it was after one of the band’s gigs that he met his friend, the drummer John Bonham. In 1968 Robert and John joined up with Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones to form Led Zeppelin. Later that year the band embarked on its first US tour and the enthusiastic response from American audiences heralded a new force in British music. Over the next 12 years the band released eight studio albums including Led Zeppelin IV which featured one of their most popular tracks – Stairway to Heaven.In 1980 John Bonham died from alcohol poisoning at the age of 32 and Led Zeppelin broke up. Devastated by his friend’s death, Robert took himself off to explore other creative avenues, recording and performing with a wide range of artists. Robert and Alison Krauss released their second album, Raising the Roof, in 2021. Robert lives in Worcestershire near where he grew up. He is a committed fan of Wolverhampton Wanderers and Black Country homing pigeons.DISC ONE: Pink Peg Slacks by Eddie Cochrane DISC TWO: Serenade by Mario Lanza DISC THREE: I Ain’t Superstitious by Howlin’ Wolf DISC FOUR: Teenage Ska by Baba Brooks DISC FIVE: Ohio by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young DISC SIX: Raha Gardishon Mein Hardam by Mohammed Rafi DISC SEVEN: Diaraby by Ali Farka Touré with Ry Cooder DISC EIGHT: Your Long Journey by Robert Plant and Alison Krauss BOOK CHOICE: The Earliest English Poems, translated by Michael Alexander LUXURY ITEM: A basket containing photos of homing pigeons CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Serenade by Mario Lanza Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
10/04/2235m 12s

Oti Mabuse, dancer

Oti Mabuse is a dancer, choreographer and TV talent show judge. She has enjoyed great success on the BBC show Strictly Come Dancing and is one of only two professional dancers to win the glitterball trophy twice.Oti was born in South Africa in 1990, the year that Nelson Mandela was released from prison, and dance was a central part of her life from a very early age: her mother had set up a dance school so that black children could learn ballroom and Latin dancing. Oti followed in the footsteps of her two older sisters, winning dance competitions in South Africa and taking part in international events. She competed in Blackpool when she was just 11 years old, and retains strong memories of the elegant Tower Ballroom and the poor weather. Oti's father trained as a lawyer and her mother worked in education, and they felt that their youngest daughter needed the security of a professional qualification, so Oti studied civil engineering at university. Shortly before qualifying, she decided to abandon her degree and become a professional ballroom dancer, joining her sister Motsi in Germany. She first appeared on Strictly Come Dancing in 2015 and has recently announced her departure from the show. She lives in London with her husband, the dancer Marius Lepure. DISC ONE: Lose My Breath by Beyoncé (with Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams) DISC TWO: My Afrikan Dream by Vicky Sampson DISC THREE: A Song for Mama by Boyz II Men DISC FOUR: Dance With My Father by Luther Vandross DISC FIVE: Un-break my Heart by Toni Braxton DISC SIX: I'm Not a Girl, Not Yet a Woman by Britney Spears DISC SEVEN: It’s My Life by Bon Jovi DISC EIGHT: Survivor by Destiny’s Child BOOK CHOICE: Will by Will Smith LUXURY ITEM: A photo of Oti and her Grandma CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: It’s My Life by Bon JoviPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
03/04/2235m 29s

Professor Nick Webborn, Chair of the British Paralympic Association

Professor Nick Webborn has chaired the British Paralympic Association since 2017. He is a world-leading expert on Paralympic sports medicine and the most widely-published author on the subject. He has attended 11 Paralympic and one Olympic Games. He was born in Swansea in 1956, trained as a doctor in London and joined the RAF as a junior medical officer. In 1981 he was playing in an RAF rugby match when a mistimed opposition tackle left him with a severe spinal injury. After many months of treatment and rehabilitation, which he now describes as 'long and tortuous,' he wanted to return to work in medicine, but found that there was a reluctance to employ a doctor with a disability. He worked as a GP and also pursued an interest in sports medicine, leading to research in this area and an academic role. When he saw the medical support available for Olympic athletes, he felt strongly that para-athletes deserved the same level of specialist help - especially as many also had to deal with underlying problems that their Olympic peers did not face. His pioneering research has made Paralympic sport safer for athletes, and has driven the development of sports medicine in areas such as rehabilitation. He also represented Great Britain in wheelchair tennis in 2005. Nick is Professor of Sport and Exercise Medicine at the University of Brighton. DISC ONE: Heroes by David Bowie DISC TWO: Hallelujah, composed by George Frideric Handel, performed by London Musici Chamber Choir and London Musici Orchestra, conducted by Mark Stephenson DISC THREE: Jamaica Farewell by Nina and Frederik DISC FOUR: Will Ye Go Lassie Go by The Corries DISC FIVE: For Crying out Loud by Meat Loaf DISC SIX: This is Me by Keala Settle DISC SEVEN: Sweet Caroline by Neil Diamond DISC EIGHT: You’ll Never Walk Alone by Gerry & the Pacemakers BOOK CHOICE: The Complete Works of Charles Dickens LUXURY ITEM: Nick’s adapted Segway, with a built-in espresso machine CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: This is Me by Keala Settle Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
27/02/2237m 30s

Anne Tyler, writer

Anne Tyler is a novelist and short story writer. Her 23 novels include the Accidental Tourist, Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant and the Pulitzer Prize-winning Breathing Lessons. Anne was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 1941, the oldest of four children. Her parents were Quakers and the family lived in a succession of Quaker communities in the South until they settled in a Quaker commune in Celo, in the mountains of North Carolina in 1948. When she was 11 the family moved to Raleigh, the capital of North Carolina, where Anne attended a mainstream school.Anne majored in Russian literature at Duke University in North Carolina where she enrolled in a creative writing class run by the author Reynolds Price. After completing her studies she worked as a librarian in the university library.Anne’s first novel, If Morning Ever Comes, was published in 1964 when she was just 22-years-old. Her writing is widely praised for the way it chronicles the lives of middle-class America and celebrates endurance and the complexities of family relationships.Anne moved to Baltimore with her husband and children in 1967 and the city has been the setting for her books ever since. DISC ONE: Darby’s Castle by Kris Kristofferson DISC TWO: This is My Father’s World by Cedarmont Kids DISC THREE: Hearts Of Stone by The Charms DISC FOUR: Darling Dareyne by Shusha DISC FIVE: Un Canadien Errant by Ian And Sylvia DISC SIX: Heart of Glass by Blondie DISC SEVEN: While Sheep May Safely Graze, composed by J.S Bach, performed by Philharmonic Orchestra and conducted by Richard Hayman DISC EIGHT: Baltimore by Nina Simone BOOK CHOICE: The Golden Apples by Eudora Welty LUXURY ITEM: A supply of pet foodCASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: While Sheep May Safely Graze, composed by J.S Bach, performed by Philharmonic Orchestra and conducted by Richard Hayman Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
20/02/2236m 1s

Leslie Caron, actress

Leslie Caron is an award-winning actress and dancer who starred in some of the most memorable films of Hollywood’s golden age including An American in Paris and Gigi. Leslie was first cast away on Desert Island Discs in 1956 when she was 25, and her return, nearly 66 years later, marks the greatest gap between appearances in the programme's 80-year history. She was born in Paris in 1931 and started ballet lessons at 11 to please her mother, a dancer herself who had performed on Broadway. Her early childhood was marred by the war and growing up in occupied Paris, but when she was 16 she joined Roland Petit’s Ballets des Champs-Elysées which opened up a new world of possibility. A year later she was spotted during a performance by a member of the audience - Gene Kelly. He lobbied MGM to cast her as his leading lady in An American in Paris, which launched her Hollywood career.Leslie played the tile role in Gigi both on stage in London in a production directed by Peter Hall, who she married, and in the feature film directed by Vincente Minelli. The film won all nine of its nominations at the 1959 Academy Awards – a record at the time.Leslie went on to star in the L-Shaped Room and later played roles in the films Chocolat and Damage. In 2006 she won an Emmy Award for her part in the television series Law and Order: Special Victims Unit. More recently she was on our TV screens playing the Countess Mavrodaki in the drama series The Durrells. She was awarded the Commandeur de la Légion d’honneur in 2013 and the JF Kennedy Gold Medal in the Arts two years later.Leslie lives in London and describes herself as “almost retired.”DISC ONE: L’Accordeoniste by Édith Piaf DISC TWO: Sì, Mimì chiamano Mimi, composed by Giacomo Puccini, performed by Maria Callas and Philharmonia Orchestra, conducted by Tullio Serafin DISC THREE: Ne me quite pas by Jacques Brel DISC FOUR: Miss Otis Regrets by Ella Fitzgerald DISC FIVE: One for My Baby (from The Sky’s The Limit) by Fred Astaire DISC SIX: Requiem in D minor (Introitus: Requiem) Composed by Mozart, performed by Vienna Philharmonic and Vienna Singverein, conducted by Herbert Von Karajan DISC SEVEN: Burn On by Randy Newman DISC EIGHT: Les Feuilles Mortes by Yves Montand BOOK CHOICE: The Sixth Sense of Animals by Maurice Burton LUXURY ITEM: A cutlass CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Sì, Mimì chiamano Mimi, composed by Giacomo Puccini, performed by Maria Callas and Philharmonia Orchestra, conducted by Tullio SerafinPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
13/02/2236m 31s

Professor Sir David Spiegelhalter, statistician

Professor Sir David Spiegelhalter specialises in medical statistics. He is the Chair of the Winton Centre for Risk and Evidence Communication at Cambridge University, and one of the most frequently cited experts in his field. During the Covid 19 pandemic, he has made regular appearances as a broadcaster and newspaper commentator, analysing and explaining complex data for a general audience. David was born in Barnstable, the youngest of three children. After studying maths at Oxford University and University College London, he spent a year teaching at the University of Berkeley, California before returning to the UK. He has also worked in the field of computer-aided diagnosis. His expertise was called upon in the Bristol Royal Infirmary Inquiry and the Harold Shipman Inquiry.He was knighted in 2014 for his services to medical statistics. DISC ONE: Everybody Knows by Leonard Cohen DISC TWO: Dragostea Din Tei by O-Zone DISC THREE: Oh Well Part 1 by Fleetwood Mac DISC FOUR: A Vaca de Fogo by Madredeus DISC FIVE: If I Should Fall From Grace With God by The Pogues DISC SIX: Four Last Songs: Beim Schlafengehen, composed by Richard Strauss and sung by Jessye Norman DISC SEVEN: St Matthew Passion: Erbarme dich, mein Gott! Composed by Bach, sung by Németh, with Hungarian State Orchestra, conducted by Geza Oberfrank DISC EIGHT: When Father Papered The Parlour by Billy Williams BOOK CHOICE: Ultimate Survival Handbook by Bear Grylls LUXURY ITEM: An unlimited supply of printed Killer Sudoku CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Dragostea Din Tei by O-Zone Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
06/02/2237m 0s

Lyse Doucet, journalist

Lyse Doucet is the BBC’s award-winning chief international correspondent, reporting from a range of postings including in Kabul, Islamabad, Tehran and Jerusalem for nearly 40 years. Lyse was born in Bathhurst, New Brunswick, in eastern Canada and after graduating with a master’s degree from the University of Toronto she set her sights on becoming a journalist. She took her first step by signing up with the volunteer agency Canadian Crossroads International which offered her a placement in Ivory Coast, West Africa.In 1982 the BBC set up a West Africa office and Lyse began filing reports as a freelance journalist. After stints working in London and Pakistan she made her first visit to Kabul in 1988 and covered the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan. This trip was the beginning of her long association with the country – a country she now calls her ‘second home’.In 1989 she became the BBC’s Afghanistan and Pakistan correspondent and later on in her career she reported from India and Indonesia in the aftermath of the tsunami. In 2011 she played a leading role in the BBC’s coverage of the Arab Spring, reporting from Tunisia, Egypt and Libya.She was appointed an OBE in 2014 for services to British broadcast journalism and in 2019 she was admitted to the Order of Canada. DISC ONE: Habibi Nour Al Ain by Amr Diab DISC TWO: Passionate Kisses by Mary Chapin Carpenter DISC THREE: Searching for Abegweit (Live) by Lenny Gallant DISC FOUR: Annie’s Song by John Denver DISC FIVE: Bi Lamban by Toumani Diabate and Ballake Sissoko DISC SIX: L Einaudi: Elegy For The Arctic, composed and performed by Ludovico Einaudi DISC SEVEN: Here and Now by Derek Roche, featuring Kathy Evans DISC EIGHT: Dawn by The Orchestra of the Afghanistan National Institute of Music BOOK CHOICE: A Persian language book LUXURY ITEM: Essential oils CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Searching for Abegweit (Live) by Lenny Gallant Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
30/01/2236m 50s

John Caudwell, businessman

John Caudwell is a businessman and philanthropist who founded the mobile phone company Phones 4U in 1996. It became the UK’s largest independent mobile phone retailer and made him one of Britain’s most successful businessmen. John was born in Birmingham and grew up in Stoke-on-Trent. He came up with his first business venture when he was five – he sold his toys to the other children in his neighbourhood. After he left school he became an apprentice engineer at the Michelin Tyre Factory, but the hunger to have his own business drove him on. In his spare time he set up a variety of enterprises from a grocery store to a mail order business selling motorcycle clothing.In 1980 he set up a car dealership with his brother Brian and a few years later spotted a mobile phone in use at a car auction. Although the phone was heavy and cumbersome, John saw the potential of cellular technology and set up his own retail business, starting off with 26 phones which took him almost a year to sell.In 2000 he set up Caudwell Children, his charity which helps children with disabilities, and remains its largest single benefactor. He was one of the first people in the UK to sign up to Bill and Melinda Gates’s Giving Pledge, vowing to give away 70% of his wealth during his lifetime. In 2006 John sold the Caudwell Group for £1.5 billion. DISC ONE: Bennie and the Jets by Elton John DISC TWO: She Loves You by The Beatles DISC THREE: Bring Him Home by Alfie Boe and the cast and orchestra of Les Misérables DISC FOUR: Maggie May by Rod Stewart DISC FIVE: My Way by Frank Sinatra DISC SIX: Bat out of Hell by Meat Loaf DISC SEVEN: Fix You by Coldplay DISC EIGHT: Truly Madly Deeply by Savage GardenBook: A Desert Island Survival manual Luxury: Sunblock CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Fix You by Coldplay Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
23/01/2235m 37s

Deborah Levy, writer

Deborah Levy is a writer whose novels Swimming Home and Hot Milk were both shortlisted for the Booker Prize. Last year she published the final instalment of her ‘living autobiography’ trilogy of memoirs, and her earlier work includes plays for the RSC as well as short story collections and poetry.Deborah was born in South Africa in 1959, the eldest child of anti-apartheid activists Norman and Philippa Levy. Her father was arrested when she was five and was imprisoned for four years. During this time, Deborah became an almost silent child, but was encouraged by a teacher to write down her thoughts, sparking her love of creative writing. After her father’s release, the family relocated to the UK and first lived above a menswear shop in London. As a teenager Deborah worked as a cinema usher, and a chance encounter with the film-maker Derek Jarman inspired her to change her plans to take a degree in literature, and instead she headed to Dartington College of Arts, where she studied writing for the stage and performance. Her first play, Pax, was commissioned in 1984, and was followed by more than a dozen dramas. Deborah then turned to writing novels in the late 1980s and 1990s. Swimming Home was shortlisted for the 2012 Booker Prize, although it initially struggled to find a publisher. Her trilogy of autobiographies, beginning in 2013 with Things I Don't Want to Know, have enjoyed considerable critical acclaim. DISC ONE: Nkosi Sikelel I’Afrika by Sol Plaatje DISC TWO: Starman by David Bowie DISC THREE: Opening by Phillip Glass DISC FOUR: Moritat Vom Mackie Messer (German version of Mack the Knife) by Lotte Lenya DISC FIVE: Black is the Color of my True Love’s Hair by Nina Simone DISC SIX: Soothing by Laura Marling DISC SEVEN: Diamonds and Rust by Joan Baez DISC EIGHT: Because the Night by Patti Smith BOOK CHOICE: The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious (Collected Works of C. G. Jung) LUXURY ITEM: A silk sheet CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Because the Night by Patti Smith Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
16/01/2237m 46s

Simon Reeve, broadcaster and writer

Simon Reeve is a broadcaster and writer best known for his TV documentaries which combine travel and adventure with investigations into the challenges faced by the places he visits.His journeys have taken him across jungles, deserts, mountains and oceans, and to some of the most dangerous and remote regions of the world. He’s dodged bullets on frontlines, dived with seals and sharks, survived malaria, walked through minefields and tracked lions on foot.Simon grew up in Acton in west London. He experienced anxiety and depression as a teenager and left school with few qualifications. He eventually found a job in the post room at the Sunday Times and from there progressed to working with the news teams, filing stories on a range of subjects from organised crime to nuclear smuggling. In the late 1990s he wrote one of the first books about Al-Qaeda and its links to Osama Bin Laden. His expertise in this area was quickly called upon after the 9/11 attacks in the USA, and he became a regular guest on American television and radio programmes.The current pandemic put Simon’s overseas trips into abeyance and he has turned his attention to the UK, recently making programmes about Cornwall and the Lake District. DISC ONE: Eskègizéw Bèrtchi by Alèmayèhu Eshèté DISC TWO: Vissi d’arte - from Puccini’s Tosca, performed by Kiri Te Kanawa with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Sir John Pritchard DISC THREE: It Takes Two by Rob Base & DJ EZ Rock DISC FOUR: We Will Rock You by Queen DISC FIVE: Mr Brightside by The Killers DISC SIX: Wiley Flow by Stormzy DISC SEVEN: You’re Lovely to Me by Lucky Jim DISC EIGHT: Rocket Man by Elton John BOOK CHOICE: Moonshine for Beginners and Experts by Damian Brown LUXURY ITEM: Bird seed CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Rocket Man by Elton John Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
09/01/2235m 45s

Richard Osman, writer and broadcaster

Richard Osman is a broadcaster, TV producer and writer who co-presents the quiz show Pointless on BBC One. His first novel, The Thursday Murder Club, was a publishing phenomenon, selling more than a million copies, and the follow-up became one of the fastest-selling titles since records began.Richard grew up in Haywards Heath in West Sussex and his early passion for television led to him devising quiz shows and programme formats from a young age. After graduating from university he worked for a number of production companies where he helped to develop and produce shows including Total Wipeout, Deal or No Deal and 8 out of 10 Cats. In 2009 Richard became a co-presenter of Pointless alongside Alexander Armstrong. It was not his intention to move in front of the camera, but he was given the job after taking on the role of co-host while the show was being developed. In 2020 Richard published his debut novel, the Thursday Murder Club, the story of four friends in a retirement community who band together to solve cold cases. It was an instant hit, selling 45,000 copies in its first three days on sale. Steven Spielberg has bought the film rights. Richard lives in London and is writing his third novel featuring his resourceful retirees. DISC ONE: Bring Me Sunshine by Morecambe And Wise DISC TWO: Metal Mickey by Suede DISC THREE: Snooker (Drag Racer) by The Douglas Wood Group DISC FOUR: You Can't Stop The Beat by the cast of Hairspray (Nikki Blonsky, Zac Efron, Amanda Bynes, Elijah Kelly, John Travolta and Queen Latifah) DISC FIVE: Extraordinary Machine by Fiona Apple DISC SIX: American Boy by Estelle Featuring Kanye West DISC SEVEN: Ran by Future Islands DISC EIGHT: A Little Respect by ErasureBOOK CHOICE: Hercule Poirot: the Complete Short Stories by Agatha Christie LUXURY ITEM: A pad of paper, a pen and dice CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: DISC FOUR: You Can't Stop The Beat by the cast of Hairspray Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
28/12/2135m 0s

Dame Prue Leith, writer and broadcaster

Dame Prue Leith is a broadcaster, writer, former restaurateur and a judge on the television show the Great British Bake Off. Prue was born in Cape Town, South Africa, during the era of Apartheid. After leaving school she moved to Paris to study at the Sorbonne, but decided that her future lay in food, and took a Cordon Bleu cookery course in London. She set up her own catering business from her bedsit, where space was so tight that she washed lettuces in the bath.In 1969 she opened Leith’s, her own fine dining restaurant, in Notting Hill in west London. Leith’s was awarded a Michelin star in the 1980s. She went on to write columns and cookbooks and became a regular broadcaster about food, on shows including the Great British Menu. In 1975 she opened Leith’s School of Food and Wine which trains professional chefs and amateur cooks. Prue replaced Mary Berry as a judge on the Great British Bake Off in 2017. She has written eight novels and lives with her husband in Gloucestershire. DISC ONE: Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds by The Beatles DISC TWO: Ugly Duckling by Danny Kaye DISC THREE: Nkosi Sikelel iAfrika by Ladysmith Black Mambazo DISC FOUR: Eine Kleine Nachtmusik (I) composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and performed by Sir Neville Marriner (violin), Academy Of St Martin-in-the-Fields Orchestra and conducted by David Willcocks DISC FIVE: 16 Tons by Tennessee Ernie Ford DISC SIX: Skylark by Aretha Franklin DISC SEVEN: Chopin, Nocturne No. 2, op 9 in E flat major, played by Elisabeth Leonskaja DISC EIGHT: Big Spender by Shirley MacLaine BOOK CHOICE: Ulysses by James Joyce LUXURY ITEM: Writing materials CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Nkosi Sikelel iAfrika by Ladysmith Black Mambazo Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
19/12/2135m 52s

Jack Thorne, screenwriter

Jack Thorne is a writer who has enjoyed great success with his scripts for the stage, cinema and television, winning five BAFTA awards for his TV work. His theatre credits include the international hit play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, which has won major awards in London and New York. For television, his recent successes include his adaptation of His Dark Materials, from the books by Philip Pullman, and The Virtues, co-written with Shane Meadows, and starring Stephen Graham.Jack was born in Bristol in 1978. His mother was a care worker, and her experiences partly inspired his 2021 TV drama Help, set in a care home during the pandemic. As a student at Cambridge University, Jack became involved in student drama, but had to halt his studies for a year when he became seriously ill with cholinergic urticaria, which he describes as an extreme form of ‘prickly heat... which feels like you’re burning from the inside.’ While he enjoys better health now, this experience informed his writing, and he has campaigned for more opportunities and better representation for disabled people, on both sides of the camera. In 2021 he gave the MacTaggart Lecture at the Edinburgh Television Festival, in which he argued that TV has failed disabled people. DISC ONE: Common People (At Glastonbury 1995) by Pulp DISC TWO: Blah Blah Café by Jean-Michel Jarre DISC THREE: The Red Flag by Billy Bragg DISC FOUR: Spasticus Autisticus by John Kelly and the Graeae Theatre Company DISC FIVE: Lippy Kids by Elbow DISC SIX: 54-46 That’s My Number by Toots and the Maytals DISC SEVEN: Skeleton Key by Audrey Nugent DISC EIGHT: End credit music from the film E.T. by John WilliamsBOOK CHOICE: Miller Plays: 1 by Arthur Miller LUXURY ITEM: TV with Channel 4 archive only CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Skeleton Key by Audrey NugentPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
12/12/2136m 9s

Helen Macdonald, writer and naturalist

Helen Macdonald is a writer and naturalist who is best known as the author of H is for Hawk which won the 2014 Samuel Johnson Prize and the Costa Book Award, and topped the sales charts. The book chronicles her experiences training a goshawk called Mabel while grieving for her late father. Helen’s father was a staff photographer at the Daily Mirror and her mother was a journalist on local newspapers. In 1975, when Helen was five, her parents bought a house in Terkel’s Park, an estate owned by the Theosophical Society. It was here that Helen became a keen bird watcher and developed a love of the natural world, spending her days in fields and meadows where she collected specimens which she brought home to study.When she was 12 she helped out at a local falconry centre and trained her first hawk, a kestrel called Amy. After graduating from Cambridge she worked for the National Avian Research Centre in Wales before returning to academia. The death of her father in 2007 prompted Helen to buy Mabel and bring her home to live with her. Training Mabel was Helen’s way of dealing with her grief during what she describes as a very dark period of her life. The relationship between her and Mabel became so intense that she says she became more hawk than human. Helen continues to write books and essays and present programmes about the natural world. She lives in Suffolk with two parrots she calls the Bugs.DISC ONE: Wayfaring Stranger by Rhiannon Giddens With Francesco Turrisi DISC TWO: Lully: Le Triomphe de l'Amour: Prélude pour la nuit, composed by Jean-Baptiste Lully, performed by Capriccio Stravagante Les 24 Violons, directed by Skip Sempé DISC THREE: Michelangelo by The 23rd Turnoff DISC FOUR: Ocean by The Velvet Underground DISC FIVE: 'Corelli' Variations, Op. 42, composed by Sergei Rachmaninov, performed by Vladimir Ashkenazy (piano) DISC SIX: When We Were Wolves by My Latest Novel DISC SEVEN: Point of View Point by Cornelius DISC EIGHT: Time by Hans Zimmer BOOK CHOICE: The Karla Trilogy by John Le Carré LUXURY ITEM: Luxury bedding CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: 'Corelli' Variations, Op. 42, composed by Sergei Rachmaninov, performed by Vladimir Ashkenazy (piano) Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
05/12/2137m 39s

Neil Gaiman, writer

Neil Gaiman is a writer whose list of titles spans many forms from novels, including American Gods, to children’s stories such as Coraline and the comic book the Sandman. Neil grew up in East Grinstead and after finishing school he became a journalist and then wrote short stories and books. One of his early commissions was writing a companion to The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams. In 1989 he began to write the Sandman series for DC Comics which were illustrated by his friend Dave McKean.The Sandman became the first comic ever to receive a literary award - the World Fantasy Award for Best Short Story – and is credited with bringing comics from an underground art form into the mainstream. It is currently in production as a television series. Neil started writing what became the fantasy novel Good Omens in the 1980s but put it aside to concentrate on the Sandman. When his friend Terry Pratchett suggested they go back to it and finish it together, they turned Neil’s initial 5,000 words into a novel which was adapted for radio in 2014 and became a television series starring David Tennant and Michael Sheen.Neil wrote his first children’s book, The Day I Swapped my Dad for Two Goldfish, in 1997. His next children’s book Coraline, about a little girl adrift in a parallel universe, was initially deemed to be too frightening to publish but is now a family favourite. Neil is married to the musician Amanda Palmer and lives in upstate New York. DISC ONE: Rock 'n' Roll Suicide by David Bowie DISC TWO: Love Unrequited (The Nightmare Song) composed by Gilbert & Sullivan, performed by The D’Oyly Carte Opera Company, John Reed (baritone) and The New Symphony Orchestra Of London, conducted by Isidore Godfrey DISC THREE: Soho (Needless to Say) by Al Stewart DISC FOUR: The Ballad Of Sweeney Todd: "Attend The Tale Of Sweeney Todd", composed by Stephen Sondheim and performed by Len Cariou and the original Broadway Cast of Sweeney Todd- 1979 DISC FIVE: Walk on the Wild Side by Lou Reed DISC SIX: Tear in Your Hand by Tori Amos DISC SEVEN: Bees in Trees by Michael Nyman DISC EIGHT: Holding Your Hand by Thea GilmoreBOOK CHOICE: The Book of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe LUXURY ITEM: A Victorian accounts ledger, a fountain pen and an unlimited supply of ink CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Bees in Trees by Michael Nyman Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
28/11/2134m 59s

Carl Hester, dressage rider

Carl Hester is a dressage rider who has competed in six Olympic Games, winning a team gold at London 2012. Carl grew up on Sark in the Channel Islands, where cars are banned and horses are part of the island’s daily life. He learned to ride on a donkey before progressing to horses. After leaving school, his first job was at an equine therapy centre in Hampshire. A key moment in his early career was an invitation from Dr Wilfried Bechtolsheimer, a leading figure in dressage, to join his yard. In 1992 Carl became the youngest ever British rider to compete at an Olympic Games. As well as a gold in London in 2012, he and the team won silver in Rio in 2016, and earlier this year a bronze medal in Tokyo, where he was the oldest member of Team GB. Carl has also enjoyed great success as a trainer of horses, including Valegro, once described as the ‘Lionel Messi of the dressage world.’ He has also mentored the rider Charlotte Dujardin, currently Britain’s most successful female Olympian along with the cyclist Laura Kenny.He lives near Newent in Gloucestershire and says he hopes to compete at the Paris Olympics in 2024. DISC ONE: Castles by Freya Ridings DISC TWO: Fleurs Du Mal by Sarah Brightman DISC THREE: Brand New Key by Melanie DISC FOUR: Some Girls by Racey DISC FIVE: Slave to Love by Bryan Ferry DISC SIX: Barcelona by Freddie Mercury & Montserrat Caballé DISC SEVEN: The Windmills of Your Mind by Noel Harrison DISC EIGHT: Bette Davis Eyes by Kim Carnes BOOK CHOICE: The Centenary Book of Sark: a history and description of the artist William A Toplis by Chris Andrews, Fiona Kelly and Amy McKee LUXURY ITEM: Carl’s own pillow CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Bette Davis Eyes by Kim Carnes Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
21/11/2135m 27s

Dame Jo da Silva, engineer

Dame Jo da Silva is a structural engineer and disaster relief specialist. Her humanitarian work has taken her from Sri Lanka in the wake of the Tsunami to Pakistan and Haiti to help with their post-earthquake recovery.Jo was born in Washington DC where her father was a diplomat. As a child she enjoyed making things including buildings for her brother’s train set. After graduating from Cambridge University she joined design and engineering firm Arup where her first assignment involved working with Lord Norman Foster on a design for bus shelters.She went on to work on the Ondaatje Wing at the National Portrait Gallery and Hong Kong’s International Airport on the island of Chek Lap Kok.In 1994 she went to Tanzania where she worked in the refugee camps which had sprung up after the genocide in Rwanda. She devised a road system which transformed the delivery of food, water and medical supplies. After this experience she decided to devote her energies to crisis and disaster projects and in 2007 she founded Arup International Development, a not-for-profit business which designs buildings and infrastructure to help vulnerable and displaced people around the world. In 2021 she received a Damehood in the New Year’s Honours list for her contribution to humanitarian relief.DISC ONE: Sound And Vision (Remastered) by David Bowie DISC TWO: Clarinet Concerto in A, K.622:2 Adagio, composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, performed by Jack Brymer (clarinet), Allegri Quartet (string quartet), London Symphony Orchestra and conducted by Sir Colin Davis DISC THREE: All The World is Green by Tom Waits DISC FOUR: Weird Fishes / Arpeggi by Radiohead DISC FIVE: Shudder / King Of Snake by Underworld DISC SIX: Big Yellow Taxi by Joni Mitchell DISC SEVEN: Not Dark Yet by Bob Dylan DISC EIGHT: Crying Shame by Jack JohnsonBOOK CHOICE: ‘The Boardman Tasker Omnibus’ by Peter Boardman and Joe Tasker LUXURY ITEM: A charpoi (traditional Indian rope bed) CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: All The World is Green by Tom WaitsPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
19/11/2135m 2s

Joanne Harris, writer

Joanne Harris is a writer who is best known for her novel Chocolat, which was made into an Oscar-nominated feature film starring Juliette Binoche and Johnny Depp.The daughter of an English father and French mother, Joanne was born in Barnsley and her first few years were spent living above her grandparents’ sweet shop. Her parents were both teachers, and her first language was French. She went on to read modern and medieval languages at Cambridge University and taught French for 15 years, writing fiction in her spare time.Her first two novels were not successful and initially Chocolat looked set to follow suit: some publishers thought it was too indulgent to appeal readers in any great number, but the story’s combination of food and magic won many fans and it became a word of mouth hit.Since then, Joanne has written 18 more novels, along with novellas, short stories, the libretti for two short operas, several screenplays and three cookbooks. Her books are now published in over 50 countries and have won a number of British and international awards.Joanne lives in Yorkshire and works from a shed in her back garden. DISC ONE: I Can See Clearly Now by Johnny Nash DISC TWO: Ballade des Dames du Temps Jadis by Georges Brassens DISC THREE: At Seventeen by Janis Ian DISC FOUR: Here Comes the Flood by Peter Gabriel DISC FIVE: Sultans of Swing by Dire Straits DISC SIX: Letting You Go by Philip Quast DISC SEVEN: When an Old Cricketer Leaves the Crease by Roy Harper DISC EIGHT: Little Plastic Castle by Ani DiFranco BOOK CHOICE: The Collected Works of Victor Hugo LUXURY ITEM: Joanne’s own shed CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: I Can See Clearly Now by Johnny Nash Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
07/11/2134m 47s

Peter Schmeichel, footballer

Peter Schmeichel is widely regarded as one of the greatest goalkeepers in the modern game. In 1999, he captained Manchester United in one of the most astonishing comebacks in football, as United won the Champions League with two goals in added time, completing a much-coveted Treble, along with the Premiership and the FA Cup. As well as winning numerous trophies during his years at Manchester United, he has played a record 129 times for Denmark, his national team. He was part of the Danish side who were surprise winners of the European Championships in 1992: Denmark were underdogs and only joined the tournament at the last minute, when Yugoslavia were forced to withdraw. During the 1990s, he was arguably the most recognised Dane in the world. He began his football career in Denmark before fulfilling his childhood dream and signing for Manchester United in 1991. His father was a professional musician, who insisted on piano and guitar lessons for the young Peter. Goalkeeping was not his choice: as young boy, he was told to play in goal by a teacher who was thought he might be too wild for the other youngsters on the pitch. Since retiring from the competitive game, Peter lives in Denmark but spends time travelling to see Manchester United play and he also follows his son, Kasper, who plays for Leicester City and Denmark.DISC ONE: We Are The Champions by Queen DISC TWO: Hymn To Freedom by Oscar Peterson DISC THREE: Rosanna by Toto DISC FOUR: Sultans Of Swing by Dire Straits DISC FIVE: Sir Duke by Stevie Wonder DISC SIX: Angels by Robbie Williams DISC SEVEN: In The Air Tonight by Phil Collins DISC EIGHT: The Girl Is Mine by Michael Jackson With Paul McCartneyBOOK CHOICE: The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith (JK Rowling) LUXURY ITEM: Peter’s guitar CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: The Girl Is Mine by Michael Jackson With Paul McCartney Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
31/10/2136m 37s

Michael Sandel, philosopher

Michael Sandel is a political philosopher and professor of government theory at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He has also presented the BBC Radio 4 series The Public Philosopher and The Global Philosopher, in which he examines the thinking behind a current controversy.His books have tackled the idea of meritocracy and the moral limits of markets, and he has been described as a “philosopher with the global profile of a rock star.” Michael grew up in Minnesota until the age of 13 when his family relocated to Los Angeles. As a boy he was fascinated by politics and he invited Ronald Reagan, who was then governor of California, to take part in a debate at his school.During his university studies he took an internship at the Houston Chronicle and covered the Watergate scandal, sitting in on the Supreme court deliberations and subsequent impeachment hearings on Capitol Hill. Later, while he was studying as a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University he was, as he puts it, “seduced by philosophy”. Justice, the course he devised at Harvard, is one of the most popular in the university’s history – thousands of students apply to attend in person and tens of millions watch his classes online. DISC ONE: Feeling Good by Nina Simone DISC TWO: Only a Pawn in Their Game by Bob Dylan DISC THREE: Battle Hymn of the Republic by Odetta DISC FOUR: Strange Fruit by Billie Holiday DISC FIVE: Alexander Hamilton by Original Broadway Cast of Hamilton DISC SIX: Anthem by Leonard Cohen DISC SEVEN: The Stars Will Sing To You by Kiku Adatto DISC EIGHT: America the Beautiful by Ray Charles BOOK CHOICE: The Collected Dialogues of Plato LUXURY ITEM: Binoculars CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: The Stars Will Sing To You by Kiku Adatto Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
24/10/2135m 39s

Deborah Meaden, businesswoman

Deborah Meaden is a businesswoman and entrepreneur. She’s been one of the investment ‘Dragons’ in the BBC TV series since 2006. Destined to be a successful entrepreneur, Deborah Meaden launched her first business straight out of college at nineteen years old, importing artisan Italian glass and ceramic homeware goods to the UK. After running various franchise businesses, she joined her family company, Weststar Holidays and eventually became Managing Director. A few years later, when her parents wanted to retire, she bought them out of the business and later sold the company making her a multi-millionaire.Deborah is now a full time investor with a wide ranging portfolio. For the last fifteen years, she has been one of the investment Dragons on BBC TV’s Dragon’s Den. Even though she has many millions in the bank, she has no plans to step back from business. “Why would I stop doing something that I love?”She lives in Somerset with her husband, Paul.DISC ONE: Ride a White Swan by T. Rex DISC TWO: The Bottle by Gil Scott-Heron / Brian Jackson DISC THREE: Mercy Mercy Me by Marvin Gaye DISC FOUR: Don't Push It Don't Force It by Leon Haywood DISC FIVE: Money's Too Tight To Mention by The Valentine Brothers DISC SIX: El Condor Pasa by Simon And Garfunkel DISC SEVEN: Suite: The Planets – Jupiter composed by Gustav Holst, performed by BBC Symphony Orchestra and conducted by Sir Malcolm Sargent DISC EIGHT: Be Thankful For What You've Got by William De Vaughn BOOK CHOICE: A History of the World in 100 Objects by Neil MacGregor LUXURY ITEM: A sketch book and pencil CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Be Thankful For What You've Got by William De Vaughn Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
17/10/2136m 16s

Dame Sarah Connolly, mezzo-soprano

The mezzo-soprano Dame Sarah Connolly has sung at the most prestigious venues around the world, including the Royal Opera House, London and the Metropolitan Opera in New York, as well as Glyndebourne, Vienna and Bayreuth. In 2009 she was a soloist at the Last Night of the BBC Proms, singing Rule Britannia dressed as Admiral Nelson, and she has also made a name for herself taking on male or so-called “trouser roles” in opera, including Handel’s Giulio Cesare (Julius Caesar). As a child, she was an outstanding pianist with a passion for classical music and jazz. After studying piano and voice at the Royal College of Music, she decided to become a singer. She was a member of the BBC Singers for five years, before taking the leap and seeking work as a soloist. She took a break from public performance in 2019 to have treatment for breast cancer, but has now resumed her career. She was made a DBE in the 2017 Birthday Honours and last year she became an Honorary Member of the Royal Philharmonic Society, recognising her outstanding services to music.DISC ONE: Stairway to Heaven by Led Zeppelin DISC TWO: Handel: L'Allegro, Il Penseroso, ed il Moderato, Part III: As steals the morn. Performed by Mark Padmore (tenor), Lucy Crowe (soprano) and The English Concert, conducted by Andrew Manze DISC THREE: Rebel Rebel by David Bowie DISC FOUR: Blue In Green by Miles Davis DISC FIVE: Embroidery in Childhood (Act III, scene 1) Composed and conducted by Benjamin Britten. Performed by Claire Watson (soprano) and Royal Opera House, Covent Garden DISC SIX: Schubert Winterreise : Das Wirtshaus, performed by Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau (baritone) and Gerald Moore (piano) DISC SEVEN: Wagner - Der Ring : Keilberth, Bayreuth live, 1955. Act 3 Die Walküre, Denn einer nur freie die Braut. Performed by Hans Hotter (bass-baritone) and Bayreuth Festival Orchestra DISC EIGHT: Symphony Number 3 in D minor Mahler 3 : Mov’t 6, Ruhevoll- Empfunden (what love tells me) Performed by Vienna Philharmonic and conducted by Claudio Abaddo BOOK CHOICE: The Infernal Desire Machines of Doctor Hoffman by Angela Carter LUXURY ITEM: A grand piano with a tuning kit CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Wagner - Der Ring : Keilberth, Bayreuth live, 1955. Act 3 Die Walküre, Denn einer nur freie die Braut. Performed by Hans Hotter (bass-baritone) and Bayreuth Festival OrchestraPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
10/10/2137m 31s

Tom Ilube, entrepreneur

Tom Ilube is an entrepreneur, known for his successful start-up companies, and a philanthropist. He recently took up the post of chairman of the Rugby Football Union. He was born in 1963 to a Nigerian father and a British mother, and grew up first in London, and then in Uganda, a stay cut short by the rise to power of Idi Amin. He began his teenage years back in the UK, enjoying rugby and ice-skating, before moving with his family to Nigeria, where he also attended university, studying Applied Physics and launching his first business selling flared trousers to fellow students. He returned to London looking for work in information technology. After many unsuccessful job applications, British Airways gave him a break, and he later worked for the London Stock Exchange and Goldman Sachs. In 1996, he founded his first company and has since been involved with several other start-ups – “thinking up ideas, raising venture capital, building companies, selling them and doing it all again,” he says. He is also involved with philanthropic projects in education, including founding a school for high-achieving but disadvantaged girls in Ghana with a focus on maths and science. In 2017 he topped the Powerlist, the annual list of the 100 most influential people of African and African Caribbean heritage in Britain, and was appointed a CBE in 2018. He is married to Caron and has two grown-up children.DISC ONE: Doctor Who by BBC Radiophonic Workshop DISC TWO: Sweet Mother by Prince Nico Mbarga And Rocafil Jazz International DISC THREE: The Boys Are Back in Town by Thin Lizzy DISC FOUR: Swing Low, Sweet Chariot by Ladysmith Black Mambazo DISC FIVE: That's The Way Love Goes by Janet Jackson DISC SIX: Family Business by Kanye West DISC SEVEN: Mr Bojangles by Sammy Davis Jr DISC EIGHT: A Change is Gonna Come by Ayanna Witter-JohnsonBOOK CHOICE: The Wormwood Trilogy by Tade Thompson LUXURY ITEM: A solar-powered puzzle generator, designed by Tom. CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Mr Bojangles by Sammy Davis JrPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
03/10/2136m 10s

Tracey Ullman, actor and comedian

Tracey Ullman was the first woman to be offered her own television sketch show – both in Britain and America – and has starred in film and television dramas alongside Meryl Streep, Cate Blanchett and Hugh Grant. The Emmy-winning Tracey Ullman Show ran for four seasons in the US and provided the launch pad for the Simpsons. Tracey was born in Slough and as a child she would impersonate people and put on shows for the amusement of her mother after the death of her father. At 12 she won a scholarship to the Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts in London and worked in repertory theatre and the West End in London before her television career took off. She was one of the stars of the BBC’s prime time sketch show Three of a Kind alongside David Copperfield and a young Lenny Henry.In 1985 she moved to Los Angeles with her husband, the producer Allan McKeown, where her uncanny impressions of Americans from all walks of life won her acclaim and awards in equal measure.After the death of her husband Tracey returned to the UK in 2016 and was soon back on our screens in a new sketch series, Tracey Ullman’s Show, which showcased her enduring talent for sending up the powerful and the famous, including Dame Judi Dench, Angela Merkel and Theresa May. DISC ONE: American Girl by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers DISC TWO: You Won't See Me by The Beatles DISC THREE: Nichols and May At Work by Mike Nichols And Elaine May DISC FOUR: That's The Way Of The World by Earth, Wind & Fire DISC FIVE: Everyday I Write the Book by Elvis Costello And The Attractions DISC SIX: They Don’t Know by Kirsty MacColl DISC SEVEN: You and I by Stevie Wonder DISC EIGHT: This Is the Sea by The WaterboysBOOK CHOICE: The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole, Aged 13¾ by Sue Townsend LUXURY ITEM: Nuts CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: You and I by Stevie Wonder Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
26/09/2134m 4s

Baroness Hale of Richmond, former judge

Brenda Hale, Baroness Hale of Richmond, is a former judge who served as the first female president of the Supreme Court. In 2019 she announced the court’s judgement that the prorogation of Parliament was ‘unlawful, void and of no effect’. The twinkling spider brooch she wore that day caused a sensation and set social media aflame. She was the first woman and the youngest person to be appointed to the Law Commission and in 2004 became the UK’s first woman law lord.Lady Hale was born in Yorkshire and read law at the University of Cambridge where she graduated top of her class. She spent almost 20 years in academia and also practised as a barrister. Later at the Law commission she led the work on what became the 1989 Children Act. Lady Hale retired as a judge in January 2020.DISC ONE: Messiah - Part 1: O Thou That Tellest Good Tidings To Zion, composed by Georg Friedrich Händel, performed by Kathleen Ferrier and The London Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Sir Adrian Boult DISC TWO: Love Me Do by The Beatles DISC THREE: Move Him Into The Sun. Composed and conducted by Benjamin Britten. Performed by Peter Pears (tenor) and Galina Vishnevskaya (soprano) with the Bach Choir and the London Symphony Orchestra DISC FOUR: Part 1 Nos 4 & 5: Gloria in excelsis Deo – Et in terra pax. Composed by Johann Sebastian Bach, performed by The Monteverdi Choir and The English Baroque Soloists and conducted by Sir John Eliot Gardiner DISC FIVE: The Marriage of Figaro), K. 492 Sull'Aria. Composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, performed by sopranos Charlotte Margiono and Barbara Bonney, Netherlands Opera Chorus and the Concertgebouw Orchestra DISC SIX: Hand in Hand by Glória (Ireland’s Gay and Lesbian Choir) DISC SEVEN: Parry: I Was Glad, composed by Hubert Parry, performed by Westminster Abbey Choir, Simon Preston (organ) and conducted by William McKinney DISC EIGHT: Dies Irae. Composed by Giuseppe Verdi, performed by Swedish Radio Choir and the Eric Ericson Chamber Choir, with the Berlin Philharmonic, conducted by Claudio AbbadoBOOK CHOICE: A Desert Island survival manual LUXURY ITEM: A solar-powered computer with sudoku puzzles and a writing application CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Part 1 Nos 4 & 5: Gloria in excelsis Deo – Et in terra pax, composed by Johann Sebastian Bach, performed by The Monteverdi Choir and The English Baroque Soloists, conducted by Sir John Eliot Gardiner Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
19/09/2138m 6s

Michael Holding, cricketer

Michael Holding is a cricket commentator and former West Indies bowler. He’s widely regarded as one of the greatest fast bowlers in the history of international cricket. In July 2020 when rain stopped play during the television coverage of a Test Match, he gave an unscripted four minute monologue on institutional racism in sport and society in the wake of the death of George Floyd. His spontaneous eloquence won him widespread acclaim, including a Royal Television Society award.Michael was born in Kingston, Jamaica, in 1954 and grew up playing Catchy Shubby, an informal and fast-moving form of cricket, in scrubland behind his parents' home. He made his debut for Jamaica aged 18. Two years later he played in his first Test match for the West Indies and went on to become part of a team that would make sporting history – not losing a single series for 15 years. Michael earned the nickname ‘Whispering Death’ for his long quiet run-up and extremely fast deliveries, and many cricket experts believe he bowled the greatest over in Test history – to the English batsman Geoffrey Boycott in 1981 in Barbados. He retired from international cricket in 1987 and became a well-respected and straight-talking commentator on the game: he has said this is his last year in the commentary box and he plans to return to his home in the Cayman Islands. DISC ONE: Don't Make Me Over by Dionne Warwick DISC TWO: War by Bob Marley And The Wailers DISC THREE: Pata Pata by Miriam Makeba DISC FOUR: Color Him Father by The Winstons DISC FIVE: What’s Going On by Marvin Gaye DISC SIX: Another Day in Paradise by Phil Collins DISC SEVEN: That’s What Friends Are For by Dionne Warwick Featuring Elton John, Gladys Knight And Stevie Wonder DISC EIGHT: Who the Cap Fit by Bob Marley And The WailersBOOK CHOICE: Long Walk To Freedom by Nelson Mandela LUXURY ITEM: A football CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: That’s What Friends Are For by Dionne Warwick Featuring Elton John, Gladys Knight And Stevie Wonder Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Katy Hickman Photo BBC / Amanda Benson
12/09/2136m 10s

Nazir Afzal, lawyer

Nazir Afzal is a solicitor and the former chief crown prosecutor for north-west England. Among his notable cases, he brought the Rochdale sex grooming gangs to trial in 2012.Nazir’s parents arrived in the UK from Pakistan in 1961 and he was born in Birmingham the following year. After completing his legal training he started his career as a defence lawyer but soon realised that he preferred prosecution to defence, joining the Crown Prosecution Service in 1991. As director of prosecutions for London he turned his attention to so-called honour-based violence and brought successful prosecutions against the perpetrators of these crimes. In 2011 as chief crown prosecutor for north-west England he began investigating sex grooming gangs in Rochdale, overturning a previous CPS decision not to bring charges against the gangs. He brought prosecutions against nine men who were convicted and jailed in 2012 for the sexual exploitation of 47 young girls. Nazir retired from the Crown Prosecution Service in 2015. He currently chairs the Catholic Church’s new safeguarding body and advises the Welsh government on issues of gender-based violence.DISC ONE: Jump Around by House of Pain DISC TWO: This Woman’s Work by Kate Bush DISC THREE: Why Should I Cry for You? by Sting DISC FOUR: One in Ten by UB40 DISC FIVE: Set You Free (Voodoo And Serano Remix) by N-Trance DISC SIX: Woman in Chains by Tears For Fears With Oleta Adams DISC SEVEN: One by Mary J. Blige & U2 DISC EIGHT: Talkin' Bout A Revolution by Tracey Chapman BOOK CHOICE: To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee LUXURY ITEM: A guitar CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: This Woman’s Work by Kate Bush Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
01/08/2134m 25s

Robert Macfarlane, writer

Robert Macfarlane is a writer whose books about the natural world, including The Wild Places and The Old Ways, have won many prizes and taken root in the best-seller charts. He was born into a family of enthusiastic amateur climbers and his early memories include being carried up the Cairngorms on his father's back. This childhood experience led to a lifelong passion, and inspired his first book, Mountains of the Mind, about the complex human fascination with mountains. His interest in the wider natural world also developed from a young age, and much of his writing focuses on the environments around us and how we relate to them. In The Wild Places, he travelled to marshes and moors, cliff-tops and beaches, in search of remaining areas of wilderness in the British Isles. In The Old Ways, he headed out on foot, following often ancient pathways through a range of landscapes, both in Britain and beyond. His book The Lost Words, created with the artist Jackie Morris and published in 2017, became a phenomenon. It highlighted how words such as bluebell, conker, heron and kingfisher were disappearing from modern British childhoods. It's been adapted for performance and widely distributed in schools and care homes. Robert is Director of Studies in English at Emmanuel College, Cambridge. He is married to Professor Julia Lovell and they have three children. DISC ONE: Nature Boy by Nat King Cole DISC TWO: The Ghost of O'Donahue by Johnny Flynn DISC THREE: California Dreamin by The Mamas And The Papas DISC FOUR: Birdhouse In Your Soul by They Might Be Giants DISC FIVE: Blessing by The Lost Words DISC SIX: Four Ethers by Serpentwithfeet DISC SEVEN: The Swimming Song by Loudon Wainwright III DISC EIGHT: Messiaen: Quartet for the End of Time (third movement) performed by Claude Desurmont (clarinet)BOOK CHOICE: Collected works of Gerard Manley Hopkins LUXURY ITEM: A chilli plant CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: The Ghost of O'Donahue by Johnny FlynnPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
25/07/2134m 44s

Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill, athlete

Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill is an Olympic gold medallist and three-time world champion heptathlete, and is one of the most successful women in British sporting history. She was the face of Team GB during the 2012 London Olympics, and her image adorned billboards and hoardings across the country in the run up to the Games.Born in Sheffield, Jessica discovered sport as a youngster after attending a local athletics camp during the school holidays. By the time she was 13 she was working with a coach and had joined the City of Sheffield Athletics Club.In 2006 she won bronze at the Melbourne Commonwealth Games but in 2008 she suffered an injury to her right foot which dashed her hopes of competing in the Beijing Olympics. She spent the next year working her way back to fitness and by the 2012 London Olympics she was at the peak of her powers. When she crossed the finish line on 4 August – known as Super Saturday when Team GB won three athletics gold medals in less than an hour – she took the gold medal with a British and Commonwealth record score which remained unbeaten for seven years. Just 15 months after the birth of her first child, Jessica won the heptathlon world title in Beijing – her third World Championship gold medal in a row. She won silver at the Rio Olympics in 2016. In October of that year, at the age of 30, she retired from competitive athletics. DISC ONE: Moment 4 Life by Nicki Minaj DISC TWO: Street Life by Randy Crawford DISC THREE: Westside by TQ DISC FOUR: Foolish by Ashanti DISC FIVE: Mo Money Mo Problems by The Notorious BIG Featuring Mase And Puff Daddy DISC SIX: Unfinished Sympathy by Massive Attack DISC SEVEN: Public Service Announcement by Jay-Z DISC EIGHT: Try a Little Tenderness by Otis Redding BOOK CHOICE: The Wonders of Life by Professor Brian Cox LUXURY ITEM: A photo album CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Unfinished Sympathy by Massive Attack Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
18/07/2135m 16s

Professor Noel Fitzpatrick, veterinary surgeon

Professor Noel Fitzpatrick is a veterinary surgeon who presents the television series The Supervet. He has pushed the boundaries of treatment available to animals and has developed ground breaking surgery including fitting the world’s first bionic leg on a dog.Noel was born in Ballyfin in Ireland where his father Sean was a farmer. As a very small boy Noel’s job was to count the sheep at night which he credits as the catalyst for his enduring love of animals.He completed his training in Ireland where he worked as a country vet looking after livestock. He moved to England in the 1990s and set up his referral practice in Surrey in 1997.Some of his famous clients include Meghan Markle’s dog Guy and Russell Brand’s cat Morrissey. He has also written two best-selling books based on his experiences of working with animals. DISC ONE: One by U2 DISC TWO: Love of My Life by Queen DISC THREE: Stairway to Heaven by Led Zeppelin DISC FOUR: Do Anything You Want To by Thin Lizzy DISC FIVE: Walking in My Shoes by Depeche Mode DISC SIX: Ruby Tuesday by The Rolling Stones DISC SEVEN: Uprising by Muse DISC EIGHT: Nothing Else Matters (Live) by Metallica And San Francisco SymphonyBOOK CHOICE: Oscar Wilde: Essays and Letters, Plays and Poems, Stories LUXURY ITEM: A guitar CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: One by U2 Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
12/07/2135m 53s

Paul Costelloe, fashion designer

Paul Costelloe is a fashion designer who recently celebrated his 36th year showing at London Fashion Week, making him the event’s longest-standing designer.Paul was born in Dublin where his father ran a successful company making raincoats. He studied at the Grafton Academy of Fashion Design and then moved to Paris where he started a fashion course at the Chambre Syndicale de la Couture but felt out of his depth and soon dropped out. He talked his way into a job with the eccentric French designer and performer Jacques Esterel, who designed Brigitte Bardot’s wedding dress, and then spent time in Milan and New York before returning to Ireland where he set up his own label.In 1983 Paul started designing clothes for Diana, Princess of Wales – a collaboration that lasted until her death in 1997. He created a range of memorable outfits for the Princess of Wales including the tuxedo suit she wore to the Pavarotti in the Park concert at Hyde Park in 1991 where the Italian tenor serenaded her in front of 125,000 people during a torrential downpour. DISC ONE: Don't Be Cruel by Elvis Presley DISC TWO: Raglan Road by Luke Kelly And The Dubliners DISC THREE: Save the Last Dance For Me by The Drifters DISC FOUR: Les Champs-Elysees by Joe Dassin DISC FIVE: Ol Man River by Paul Robeson DISC SIX: Did You Not Hear My Lady by Aled Jones DISC SEVEN: Di Capua, Capurro: O Sole Mio! performed by Luciano Pavarotti (tenor) and National Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Giancarlo Chiaramello DISC EIGHT: Grace by Rod StewartBOOK CHOICE: Reynard the Fox by Anne Louise Avery LUXURY ITEM: A painting kit CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Grace by Rod Stewart Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
04/07/2134m 14s

Margaret Busby, publisher

Margaret Busby is a publisher and editor who was the chair of the Booker Prize jury in 2020.She has spent a life time in the literary world and was the youngest person and first black woman to set up a publishing house when she was twenty three years old. Together with Clive Allison, she created Allison and Busby based in Soho, London.Margaret was born in Ghana in the 1940s and spent her childhood at a boarding school in the UK whilst her parents ran a medical practice in rural Ghana. She studied English at Bedford College, University of London before embarking on her career in publishing.Margaret’s love of poetry was the catalyst for setting up Allison and Busby. They were both totally new to publishing and did not know the usual industry rules. She and her business partner had fifteen thousand, five shilling poetry magazines printed without any means of distributing them . They went on to be an eclectic publishing house championing new work and also reprinting classic texts from writers of all backgrounds.In recent years, Margaret has made time to be a literary judge and has compiled two landmark anthologies Daughters of Africa and New Daughters of Africa which pull together writings by women of African descent from Ancient Egypt to the present day.DISC ONE: 7 Seconds by Youssou N’dour with Neneh Cherry DISC TWO: Haiti by David Rudder DISC THREE: Ave Maria – Gounod by Kathleen Battle (soprano) and Orchestra of St. Lukes, conducted by Leonard Slatkin DISC FOUR: Visions by Stevie Wonder DISC FIVE: My Baby Just Cares For Me by Nina Simone DISC SIX: Masanga by Jean Bosco Mwenda DISC SEVEN: Soweto Blues by Miriam Makeba DISC EIGHT: On The Sunny Side Of The Street by Dizzy Gillespie, Sonny Rollins And Sonny StittBOOK CHOICE: Return to My Native Land by Aimé Césaire LUXURY ITEM: An endless supply of Ghanaian chocolate CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Visions by Stevie Wonder Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
27/06/2136m 46s

Richard Wilson, actor and director

Richard Wilson is an actor and director who became a household name when he played the part of Victor Meldrew in the BBC sitcom One Foot in the Grave. Richard was born in Greenock in Scotland in 1936. As a child he performed in amateur drama productions and harboured a secret desire to become an actor. He left school at 17 and trained as a laboratory technician at Stobhill Hospital in Glasgow.Following National Service in Singapore, he moved to London and at the age of 27 successfully auditioned for a place at RADA. His first role was as a stonemason in Dr Finlay’s Casebook and he later reached a wider audience playing snooty Jeremy Parsons QC in the television series Crown Court. Richard went on to carve out a successful theatre and television career as both an actor and director. He starred in the comedy Only When I Laugh and later in the series Tutti Frutti alongside Emma Thompson and Robbie Coltrane. In 1990 he delighted audiences with his portrayal of the grumpy pensioner Victor Meldrew in One Foot in the Grave, with his catchphrase ‘I don’t believe it!’ – a phrase which has haunted Richard ever since. The series regularly attracted an audience of 17 million viewers and Richard won two BAFTAs for his performance.Richard received an award for his outstanding contribution to film and television at the Scottish BAFTAs in 2013.DISC ONE: Symphony No. 6 in D Minor (4th movement) composed by Jean Sibelius, performed by the Berlin Philharmonic, conducted by Herbert von Karajan DISC TWO: Farewell to Stromness by Peter Maxwell Davies DISC THREE: Im Abendrot from Four Last Songs, composed by Richard Strauss, performed by Renee Fleming and the Houston Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Christoph Eschenbach DISC FOUR: The Rite of Spring, composed by Igor Stravinsky, performed by the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Simon Rattle DISC FIVE: Cucurrucucu Paloma by Caetano Veloso DISC SIX: The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face by Roberta Flack DISC SEVEN: Hammond Song by The Roches DISC EIGHT: Elgar’s Cello Concerto in E Minor (first movement) by Sheku Kanneh-Mason (cello)BOOK CHOICE: The poetry of Robert Burns LUXURY ITEM: A subscription to The Guardian newspaper CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Im Abendrot from Four Last Songs, composed by Richard Strauss, performed by Renee Fleming and the Houston Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Christoph Eschenbach Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
20/06/2137m 19s

Yo-Yo Ma, musician

Yo-Yo Ma is a cellist and one of the world's most high-profile classical musicians. He has performed for eight US Presidents, appeared in concert halls across the globe and reached new audiences through film soundtracks and TV shows including The Simpsons and Sesame Street. Yo-Yo Ma was born in Paris in 1955. His Chinese-born parents were both musicians and his father was his first cello teacher. The family moved to the USA when Yo-Yo was seven, and a noted child prodigy, playing for John F Kennedy and Leonard Bernstein. He went on to study at the Juilliard School in New York and at Harvard University. He has recorded more than 100 albums, and his many Grammy awards reveal the range of his musical interests. Along with prize-winning concerto and chamber music discs, and an acclaimed recording of Bach's Suites from unaccompanied cello, he's won awards for folk and tango albums. He is also the driving force behind the Silk Road Ensemble, creating music inspired by the cultures found along the historic trade route linking China and the West. His high-profile appearances in America include the first performance on the site of the World Trade Centre, a year after the 9/11 attacks, and contributions to the inaugurations of Presidents Obama and Biden. A more recent informal solo performance took place at his local Covid vaccination centre in Massachusetts. Yo-Yo Ma has been married to Jill Hornor for more than 40 years, and they have two children. DISC ONE: Hallelujah by Leonard Cohen DISC TWO: Erbame Dich composed by J.S Bach, conducted by Ton Koopman, performed by Kai Wessel (alto vocals), accompanied by Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra DISC THREE: Brahms: Piano Concerto No. 1 in D Minor, Op. 15: Maestoso, composed by Johannes Brahms, conducted by George Szell, performed by The Cleveland Orchestra DISC FOUR: Elgar: 1st movement Cello Concerto in E Minor, Op 85, composed by Edward Elgar, conducted by Jacqueline du Pré (cello) and London Symphony Orchestra DISC FIVE: Tin Tin Deo (Live) by The Oscar Peterson Trio DISC SIX: M4 Lieder, Op.27: Morgen! Composed by Richard Strauss, performed by Janet Baker (mezzo-soprano) and Gerald Moore (piano) DISC SEVEN: Podmoskovnye Vechera - Moscow Nights, composed by Vasily Solovyov-Sedoi, conducted by Constantine Orbelian and performed by Dimitri Hvorostovsky (baritone) and Moscow Chamber Orchestra DISC EIGHT: Schubert- Piano Trio #2 In E Flat, Op. 100, D 929 - 4. Allegro Moderato, composed by Franz Schubert, performed by Alexander Schneider (violin) and Mieczysław Horszowski (piano) BOOK CHOICE: Encyclopedia Britannica LUXURY ITEM: A Swiss Army knife CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Schubert- Piano Trio #2 In E Flat, Op. 100, D 929 - 4. Allegro Moderato, composed by Franz Schubert, performed by Alexander Schneider (violin) and Mieczysław Horszowski (piano) Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
13/06/2137m 45s

Heather Hallett, former judge and crossbench peer

Heather Hallett, Baroness Hallett of Rye, is a former judge and a cross-bench peer. Called to the Bar in 1972, Heather practised family, civil and criminal law, eventually specialising in criminal law. In 1989 she became a QC and was the first woman to chair the Bar Council in 1998. She was only the fifth woman to be appointed to the Court of Appeal in 2005 and was appointed vice president of the Court of Appeal Criminal Division in 2013.Heather was born in Eastleigh in Hampshire. Her father Hugh was a policeman who worked his way up to the rank of assistant chief constable. With each promotion the family moved house and Heather’s education was disrupted, leading her teachers to conclude that she was unlikely to secure a place at university. Heather proved them wrong and studied law at the University of Oxford.In 2009 she acted as coroner at the inquest into the deaths of the 52 victims of the July 7th London bombings in 2005 and she has taken over the inquest of Dawn Sturgess who died in the Salisbury Novichok poisonings. Heather retired as a judge in 2019 and currently sits as a life peer.DISC ONE: Caroline (Live) by Status Quo DISC TWO: Climb Ev’ry Mountain by Peggy Wood (Mother Abbess) DISC THREE: Wing Commander Hancock by Tony Hancock and Kenneth Williams DISC FOUR: Invisible Touch by Genesis DISC FIVE: The Best by Tina Turner DISC SIX: I Heard it Through the Grapevine by Marvin Gaye DISC SEVEN: Dear Lord and Father of Mankind by Temple Church Choir DISC EIGHT: Vissi d’Arte by Maria Callas (soprano) and Orchestra Del Teatro Alla Scala, conducted by Victor De Sabata BOOK CHOICE: Inspector Morse Mysteries Series Collection by Colin Dexter LUXURY ITEM: A solar-powered iPad CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Caroline (Live) by Status Quo Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
06/06/2135m 58s

Amanda Khozi Mukwashi, charity CEO

Amanda Khozi Mukwashi is the chief executive of Christian Aid, leading development and humanitarian work in Africa, Asia and the Middle East, Latin America and the Caribbean.Amanda was born in Twickenham and grew up in Zambia and Rome where her stepfather worked in the diplomatic service. She studied international trade and investment law at the University of Zambia in Lusaka and during this time she began to develop her political outlook and commitment to the issue of social justice.She moved to the UK in 1996 where she took a master’s degree at the University of Warwick. But even with two degrees and considerable work experience she was unable to find a job and retrained as a care worker. She says her time working in nursing homes “reshaped” and “humbled” her.Later she worked for the VSO and served with the United Nations Volunteer programme in Germany before landing what she calls her “dream job” at Christian Aid in 2018.DISC ONE: Pata Pata by Miriam Makeba DISC TWO: Ave Maria (after Arcadelt) Composed by Jacques Arcadelt, performed by Choeur de Chambre de Namur, conducted by Leonardo García Alarcón DISC THREE: My Hometown by Bruce Springsteen DISC FOUR: Jerusalema by Master Kg Featuring Nomcebo Zikode DISC FIVE: You Know My Name by Tasha Cobbs Leonard Featuring Jimi Cravity DISC SIX: (Red)emption Song by John Legend DISC SEVEN: I Believe by Fantasia DISC EIGHT: It Is Well With My Soul by Wintley Phipps BOOK CHOICE: Who Moved My Cheese? by Dr Spencer Johnson LUXURY ITEM: Quality Street chocolates CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: It Is Well With My Soul by Wintley Phipps Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
30/05/2136m 6s

Alexei Sayle, comedian

Alexei Sayle is a comedian and writer, who began his career just over 40 years ago at the small Comedy Store venue in London, which proved a launch-pad for a new generation of comic stars. Alexei was born in Liverpool, where his parents were loyal members of the Communist Party: their politics informed almost every aspect of the family’s life, including holidays by train to eastern European countries that were then part of the Soviet bloc. He won a place at Chelsea School of Art but didn’t thrive as a painter. He began performing with a theatre troupe and - after answering an advertisement - became the compere on the opening night of the Comedy Store. He soon found himself at the centre of a new wave of British comedy. With his tight suits and often abrasive stage presence, he enjoyed successful stand-up tours, appearances on numerous TV shows including The Young Ones, and even a novelty pop hit. He attempted to launch a career in America, but was fired from a TV series on his 40th birthday. He stepped back from stand-up and devoted himself to writing novels and short stories. More recently, he has returned to live performance, and has also created a number of comedy series for Radio 4. He lives in London with his wife Linda: they have been married for almost 50 years. DISC ONE: Volver by Carlos Gardel DISC TWO: Joe Hill by Joan Baez DISC THREE: Aviator’s March by Yevgeny Kibkalo (baritone), conducted by Alexei Kovalev DISC FOUR: Seeräuber Jenny (Pirate Jenny) by Lotte Lenya DISC FIVE: Me and Bobby McGee by Janis Joplin DISC SIX: Shipbuilding by Robert Wyatt DISC SEVEN: It Was a Good Day by Ice Cube DISC EIGHT: Bonkers by Dizzee Rascal BOOK CHOICE: The Sword of Honour Trilogy by Evelyn Waugh LUXURY ITEM: A Chinese Broadsword CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Me and Bobby McGee by Janis Joplin Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
23/05/2135m 54s

Brian Greene

Brian Greene is a theoretical physicist, mathematician and writer, whose area of research is string theory. His books and broadcasts distil the complexities of science for a general audience, leading one critic to say appreciatively “he speaks maths, physics and human.”Born in New York City, his father taught him the basics of arithmetic when he was a toddler and by the time he was five Brian was multiplying 30-digit numbers by 30-digit numbers - just for the pure joy of working things out by himself. At 11 Brian had exhausted everything his maths teacher could teach him but, thanks to his teacher’s resourcefulness, he managed to get extra tuition from a graduate student at Columbia University.After graduating from Harvard in 1984, Brian won a Rhodes scholarship to Oxford University to study gravity and quantum mechanics. At Oxford he became captivated by the idea of string theory which was causing much excitement among the physics community at the time. String theory was seen as having the potential to answer life’s big questions about space, time and the universe. Over the years Brian has been at the forefront of scientific discoveries including mirror symmetry and later proving that tears could happen in the fabric of space.Brian is currently professor of physics and mathematics at Columbia University.DISC ONE: An extract from Icarus At the Edge of Time. Composed by Philip Glass, performed by the Orchestra of St Lukes, conducted by Brad Lubman, narrated by John Lithgow DISC TWO: Rockin’ in the Rockies by The Cappy Barra Boys Harmonica Quartet DISC THREE: Turn Around by Harry Belafonte DISC FOUR: An extract from Light Falls, composed by Jeff Beal, performed by Hollywood Chamber Orchestra DISC FIVE: Brahms Rhapsody in G minor, Op. 79 no 2, performed by Martha Argerich DISC SIX: Somewhere Over the Rainbow by Judy Garland with the Victor Young Orchestra DISC SEVEN: A Million Dreams by Ziv Zaifman, Hugh Jackman and Michelle Williams DISC EIGHT: The Sound of Silence by Disturbed BOOK CHOICE: Philosophical Explanations by Robert Nozick LUXURY ITEM: A solar powered particle collider CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Turn Around by Harry Belafonte Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
16/05/2138m 1s

Billie Piper, actor

Billie Piper is an Olivier Award winning actor and former pop star.She was born in Swindon in September 1982, and her parents nurtured her interests in dance and drama from a young age. After a winning a scholarship to study at the Sylvia Young Theatre School, she moved to London as a young teenager, leaving the family home. By the age of 15, she was a full time pop star. She became the youngest female artist ever to go straight to number one in the UK charts when her debut single was a hit in 1998.Just three years later, after releasing more successful singles and two albums and touring furiously to promote them, Billie left the music industry. She married the DJ Chris Evans, and found herself the frequent subject of newspaper stories. She decided to turn to acting, her first love, and by 2005 she was back in the spotlight playing Rose Tyler in the BBC’s revival of Doctor Who. Since then she has taken on a wide range of acclaimed screen and stage roles, most notably picking up all six available awards for Best Actress – including the Olivier Award – when she starred in a new version of Lorca's play Yerma. Her recent TV series I Hate Suzy, which she co-created, has been BAFTA nominated and she has also written and directed her first film, Rare Beasts. DISC ONE: Pure Imagination by Gene Wilder DISC TWO: This Must Be the Place (Naïve Melody) by Talking Heads DISC THREE: Sara by Fleetwood Mac DISC FOUR: Out of Space by The Prodigy DISC FIVE: Champagne Supernova by Oasis DISC SIX: Turn The Page by The Streets DISC SEVEN: Halo by Beyoncé DISC EIGHT: Juicy by The Notorious B.I.G BOOK CHOICE: The Cost of Living by Deborah Levy LUXURY ITEM: Billie’s children’s art work CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Champagne Supernova by Oasis Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
09/05/2136m 22s

Professor Sir Simon Wessely

Professor Sir Simon Wessely is the first ever psychiatrist to be awarded a Regius professorship – an honour bestowed by the Queen. He is professor of psychological medicine at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience at King’s College London, and is also a consultant psychiatrist at King’s College Hospital and the Maudsley Hospital. Born in Sheffield to a father who had come to Britain on the Kindertransport, he started his research career working on unexplained symptoms and syndromes, leading progressive and sometimes controversial work on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Disagreement about whether the condition is physical or psychological continues to this day and although Simon’s studies helped develop a treatment programme, there is still no cure.Later he switched his attention to the military, exploring Gulf War Syndrome, PTSD, the risk and benefit of military service, social and psychological outcomes for ex-service personnel and historic aspects of war and psychiatry. In 1996 he established the Gulf War Illness Research Unit which subsequently became the King’s Centre for Military Health Research.He completed a term as president of the Royal Society of Medicine – the first psychiatrist to occupy the post - and in 2017 he led an independent review of the Mental Health Act.DISC ONE: Think by Aretha Franklin DISC TWO: String Quartet No. 1 (“From My Life”) in E minor (Allegro vivo appassionato) composed by Bedrich Smetana, performed by The Dante Quartet DISC THREE: Soave sia il vento, composed by Mozart, conducted by Karl Bohm, performed by Elizabeth Schwarzkopf, Walter Berry, Christa Ludwig and Philharmonia Orchestra DISC FOUR: How Long has This Been Going On? by Dexter Gordon and Lonette McKee DISC FIVE: The Room Where it Happens by Leslie Odom, Jr and Original Broadway Cast of Hamilton DISC SIX: France - La Marseillaise - Hymne national francais, composed by Claude Rouget de Lisle, performed by Ensemble du monde DISC SEVEN: Serenade No. 10 in B flat major, K. 361, "Gran Partita": Adagio, composed by Mozart, performed by German Wind Soloists DISC EIGHT: Tuxedo Junction by Jools Holland And His Rhythm And Blues Orchestra BOOK CHOICE: A Teach Yourself Russian book LUXURY ITEM: A Viennese cafe CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: How Long has This Been Going On? by Dexter Gordon and Lonette McKee Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
28/03/2138m 14s

Maggie O'Farrell, writer

Maggie O’Farrell has written eight novels, a memoir and a children’s book. In 2020 her novel Hamnet won the Women’s Prize for Fiction, and was also named Waterstones Book of the Year.Maggie was born in Northern Ireland. Her parents moved around during her childhood, and she grew up in Wales and Scotland. As a young girl, she was very ill and almost died from encephalitis. She says her lifelong love of reading comes from her long stay in hospital followed by an extended convalescence, when she missed a year of school. Her illness also left her with a stammer, which she believes has profoundly affected her relationship with language. She studied English at Cambridge University, and then looked for work as a journalist, writing poetry in her spare time. When she chanced upon a discarded computer, she decided to write a novel. She attended a creative writing course, where her tutors encouraged her to get her first manuscript published. She lives in Scotland with her husband, the writer William Sutcliffe, and their three children.DISC ONE: Elephant Gun by Beirut DISC TWO: Sit Down By The Fire by The Pogues DISC THREE: Lovesong by The Cure DISC FOUR: Chopin: Scherzo No. 2 in B flat minor, Op. 31, composed by Frédéric Chopin, performed by Martha Argerich (piano) DISC FIVE: The Bends by Radiohead DISC SIX: Little Star by Stina Nordenstam DISC SEVEN: Feeling Good by Nina Simone DISC EIGHT: Prophet (Better Watch It) by Rizzle Kicks BOOK CHOICE: Selected Stories by Alice Munro LUXURY ITEM: National Museum of Ireland - Archaeology CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Elephant Gun by BeirutPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
21/03/2135m 36s

Dame Louise Casey, crossbench peer

Baroness Casey of Blackstock is a former civil servant specialising in social welfare, who has worked under five prime ministers. She has taken on some of UK society’s most difficult issues, including homelessness, anti-social behaviour and family breakdown, and has become known for her forthright views.She grew up in Portsmouth and her first job was working on reception at a branch of the Department of Health and Social Security in the late 1980s. At 27 she became the deputy director of the housing and homelessness charity, Shelter. In 1999 she was appointed head of Tony Blair’s new Rough Sleepers Unit, prompting the media to call her the ‘homelessness tsar’.She went on to run the Anti-Social Behaviour Unit at the Home Office where she became known as the ASBO Queen. David Cameron appointed her director general of the Troubled Families Programme in 2011.In 2016 she was awarded a DBE for services to families and vulnerable people. During the first COVID-19 lockdown she led the government’s Everyone In campaign which found emergency accommodation for rough sleepers.DISC ONE: Hanging on the Telephone by Blondie DISC TWO: What a Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong DISC THREE: G Puccini: La Boheme / Act 1: Che Gelida Manina by Luciano Pavarotti and Berliner Philharmoniker, conducted by Herbert Von Karajan DISC FOUR: Love Train by The O’Jays DISC FIVE: Abide With Me by Shirley Bassey and the Morriston Rugby Club Choir DISC SIX: Danny Boy by The Grimethorpe Colliery RJB Band DISC SEVEN: Nocturne No 2 in E flat Discogs title: Op. 9/2 in E flat major, composed by Frédéric Chopin, performed by Daniel Barenboim (piano) DISC EIGHT: Quanta Qualia composed by Patrick Hawes, performed by The Self-Isolation ChoirBOOK CHOICE: The collected works of Jane Austen LUXURY ITEM: A supply of wine CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Love Train by The O’Jays Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
14/03/2137m 10s

Mark Strong, actor

Mark Strong has appeared in more than 60 films, along with numerous TV dramas and plays. His career took off after he won a leading role in the landmark 1996 BBC series Our Friends in the North, and since then his screen work includes dramas such as Syriana, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Zero Dark Thirty and The Imitation Game, as well as the fantasy and comic book worlds of Stardust, Kick Ass and Shazam. In 2015 he won the Olivier best actor award for his London stage performance in A View from the Bridge by Arthur Miller, in a production that also won him great acclaim in New York. Mark was born in London, the only child of an Austrian mother and an Italian father. His father left the family when Mark was a baby and has played no part in his life. Thanks to his mother, Mark is fluent in German, and he spent most of his school holidays with his Austrian grandmother. His mother had two jobs to support them both, and Mark attended state boarding schools in the UK from the age of six. His first taste of performing came in a punk rock band at school, but he began his further education by starting a law degree in Germany, before changing course and returning to the UK to study drama. Most recently he has been filming the TV drama Temple, in which he plays a rogue surgeon operating in abandoned tunnels beneath a London underground station.DISC ONE: Spanish Stroll by Mink DeVille DISC TWO: Are You Lonesome Tonight (Laughing Version) by Elvis Presley DISC THREE: Helden by David Bowie DISC FOUR: Police and Thieves by The Clash DISC FIVE: (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction by Devo DISC SIX: You’ve Got the Love by The Source featuring Candi Staton (Eren’s Bootleg Mix) DISC SEVEN: Peter Piper by Run DMC DISC EIGHT: Whole Lotta Love by Ike and Tina Turner BOOK CHOICE: Magnum Streetwise: The Ultimate Collection of Street Photography LUXURY ITEM: A wind up radio CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Helden by David Bowie Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
07/03/2134m 59s

Claire Horton, charity worker

Claire Horton is the former chief executive of Battersea Dogs and Cats Home, and is currently director general of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.She joined Battersea in 2010 during its landmark 150th year, spearheading a campaign which transformed the animal rescue service into a UK top 10 charity brand. During her years in charge, income and volunteer numbers quadrupled; new facilities were developed and the charity successfully campaigned for changes in animal welfare legislation.As a teenager Claire volunteered for a number of organisations including Mencap and the Riding for the Disabled Association. At 18 she joined the police force as a special constable, patrolling the streets of Dudley where she lived.Her first position in the charity sector was at the NSPCC and she later worked for the Cats Protection League and the Variety Club of Great Britain. In 2020 she was appointed CBE for her services to animal welfare.DISC ONE: Howlin’ For You by The Black Keys DISC TWO: Drink, Drink, Drink by Mario Lanza DISC THREE: Wuthering Heights by Kate Bush DISC FOUR: Ghost Town by The Specials DISC FIVE: Agnus Dei, Op 11composed by Samuel Barber, conducted by Edward Higginbottom, performed by Choir of New College Oxford DISC SIX: Affirmation by Savage Garden DISC SEVEN: Heroes by David Bowie DISC EIGHT: Benedictus by Karl Jenkins BOOK CHOICE: A book by Dick Francis LUXURY ITEM: A piano and sheet music CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Wuthering Heights by Kate Bush Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
28/02/2136m 34s

Sophia Loren

Sophia Loren is the first performer to win the Best Actress Academy Award for a role in a foreign language film. She won in 1962 for her performance in Vittorio De Sica’s film Two Women in which she played a mother trying to protect her 12-year-old daughter in war-torn Italy. In 1991, she picked up a second Oscar when the Academy presented her with an Honorary Award for her contribution to world cinema.Born Sofia Villani Scicolone in a hospital ward for unmarried mothers, she was brought up by a single mother in Pozzuoli near Naples during the war years. After success in her first beauty pageant at the age of 15 and starring in photo romance stories for popular magazines, she first came to wider attention in 1953 when she played the title role in the Italian film Aida.She played a pizza seller in De Sica’s The Gold of Naples which is regarded as her breakthrough performance and led to her working on Hollywood movies with a who’s who of co-stars including Cary Grant, Frank Sinatra, Gregory Peck and Paul Newman. Her most enduring on-screen partnership was with the Italian actor Marcello Mastroianni.In 1966 she married the film producer Carlo Ponti and went on to have two children. In her most recent film The Life Ahead, directed by her son Edoardo Ponti, she plays a holocaust survivor and ex-prostitute who cares for the children of local sex workers.DISC ONE: I’ve Got You Under My Skin by Ella Fitzgerald DISC TWO: Debussy: Suite bergamasque, L.75 - 3. Clair de lune composed by Claude Debussy, performed by Tamás Vásáry DISC THREE: Lara Says Goodbye to Yuri by Maurice Jarre DISC FOUR: Fly Me To The Moon (In Other Words) by Frank Sinatra with The Count Basie Orchestra, directed by Quincy Jones DISC FIVE: Oggi Sono Io by Mina DISC SIX: The Marketplace at Limoges composed by Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky, performed by Russian National Orchestra, conducted by Carlo Ponti DISC SEVEN: Io Sì by Laura Pausini DISC EIGHT: Caruso by Lucio Dalla BOOK CHOICE: Letters from a Young Father by Edoardo Ponti LUXURY ITEM: A pizza oven CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Caruso by Lucio Dalla Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
21/02/2136m 37s

Malala Yousafzai, activist

Malala Yousafzai is an activist who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize when she was 17 - becoming the youngest winner in its history. Today she is known globally for her human rights advocacy and her ongoing campaign to ensure all children have equal access to education.She was born in the Swat Valley in northern Pakistan where her father Ziauddin was a prominent activist who believed boys and girls should sit side by side in the classroom and co-founded a school which Malala attended. After the Taliban began to establish its presence in the Valley, day-to-day life became synonymous with danger and fear – people were taken from their homes and killed for speaking out against the regime. Education for girls was forbidden and schools were shut down or bombed.In 2009 Malala began writing an anonymous blog for BBC Urdu in which she spoke out about what was happening in Swat Valley. This made her a target. In 2012 she was shot by a Taliban gunman as she sat on the school bus. Two girls sitting alongside her were also shot. What Malala calls ‘the incident’ generated headlines around the world. Her injuries were severe and she was airlifted to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham. After a long and painful recovery she settled in Birmingham with her family.Now 23, Malala graduated from the University of Oxford last year and continues to campaign globally for girls’ education through the Malala Fund which she co-founded with her father. DISC ONE: Rang by Rahat Fateh Ali Khan & Amjad Sabri DISC TWO: Shinwari Lawangeena by Zarsanga DISC THREE: Never Say Never by Justin Bieber DISC FOUR: Hum Dekhen Ge by Iqbal Bano DISC FIVE: All I Ask of You by Sarah Brightman and Steve Barton DISC SIX: Kaari Kaari by Qurat Ul Ain Balouch DISC SEVEN: Love Always Comes as a Surprise by Peter Asher DISC EIGHT: Bibi Sherina by Sardar Ali Takkar BOOK CHOICE: Plato: Complete Works LUXURY ITEM: Lip balm CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Hum Dekhen Ge by Iqbal Bano Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
14/02/2136m 7s

George McGavin, entomologist and broadcaster

George McGavin is an entomologist, explorer and broadcaster, who has spread the word about the importance of insects to audiences in their millions. Born in Glasgow, he grew up in Edinburgh where he studied zoology at university. Following a PhD in entomology, he went on to teach and research at the University of Oxford. He gave up his post as the assistant curator of the university’s Museum of Natural History after 25 years to follow his dream of becoming a television presenter. He has presented documentaries from far-flung locations including Borneo, Guyana and New Guinea. He has made it his life’s work to uncover the mysteries of the largely uncatalogued world of invertebrates which he says makes up close to 80% of life on earth.In 2018 he was diagnosed with a rare form of skin cancer and the following year he turned the camera on himself to present a very personal programme about his diagnosis and treatment.DISC ONE: Love Reign O’er Me by The Who DISC TWO: The Dark Island by The Pipes and Drums of The Black Watch DISC THREE: Cello Concerto in E minor Op. 85, composed by Edward Elgar, performed by Jacqueline du Pré and London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Sir John Barbirolli DISC FOUR: Night Lament by Kate Rusby DISC FIVE: To Begin at the Beginning read by Richard Burton, from Under Milk Wood DISC SIX: Keep Talking by Pink Floyd DISC SEVEN: Sola, Perduta, Abbandonata by Maria Callas and Philharmonia Orchestra, conducted by Tullio Serafin DISC EIGHT: The Bog by Einojuhani Rautavaara BOOK CHOICE: A History of the World in 100 Objects by Neil MacGregor LUXURY ITEM: Hot sauce CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Cello Concerto in E minor Op. 85, performed by Jacqueline du Pré and London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Sir John Barbirolli Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
07/02/2136m 40s

Monica Galetti, chef and restaurateur

Monica Galetti is a chef, restaurateur and cook book writer, who is also known as a judge on the television series MasterChef: the Professionals.Born on the island of Upolu in Western Samoa, she grew up on the family plantation where her earliest food memories are of collecting eggs and mangoes and peeling bananas for special suppers. When she was eight she moved to New Zealand where her mother and stepfather had emigrated a couple of years earlier.After studying hospitality management and enjoying success in numerous cooking competitions, she travelled around Europe before settling in London where she found work as a commis chef at the Roux family’s restaurant, Le Gavroche. Under the watchful eye of Michel Roux Jr, she rose through the ranks to become Le Gavroche’s first female sous chef.She opened her own restaurant in 2017 where she works alongside her husband David who is head sommelier and co-owner. DISC ONE: Three Little Birds by Bob Marley And The Wailers DISC TWO: Samoa Matalasi (My Beautiful Samoa) by The Five Stars DISC THREE: You Oughta Be in Love by Dave Dobbyn (ft. Ardijah) DISC FOUR: Hotel California by The Eagles DISC FIVE: La Vie en Rose by Louis Armstrong DISC SIX: My Girl by The Temptations DISC SEVEN: Purple Rain by Prince DISC EIGHT: Feeling Good by Nina SimoneBOOK CHOICE: The complete Works of Oscar Wilde LUXURY ITEM: Scuba diving gear CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Three Little Birds by Bob Marley And The Wailers Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
31/01/2134m 54s

Tim Peake, astronaut

Major Tim Peake, is an Army Air Corps officer and a European Space Agency astronaut. He was the first British astronaut to carry out a spacewalk. As a child, he became interested in aviation, visiting air shows with his father and learning to fly as a teenager, although space travel was not yet a passion. He joined the school Cadet Corps and found he was in his element. From there he progressed to the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, and then into the Army Air Corps in 1992. His military career included service in Northern Ireland and the former Yugoslavia, and he spent several years based in Germany where he met his wife Rebecca. He qualified as a helicopter pilot in 1992, and later became a helicopter instructor. He spent time in the USA, learning to fly the Apache attack helicopter, before becoming a test pilot in 2005.In 2008, he answered an advert from the European Space Agency looking for astronauts. The following year he became one of six successful candidates, chosen from more than 8000 hopefuls. Years of training followed, involving anything from basic dentistry to underwater 'spacewalking', and in December 2015 he headed to the International Space Station for six months.After his return, Tim moved back to the UK to work with industry and engage in outreach work while he awaits his next space mission. He lives in Hampshire with his wife and two sons.DISC ONE: Don’t Stop Me Now by Queen DISC TWO: It Must Be Love by Madness DISC THREE: Waterloo Sunset by The Kinks DISC FOUR: Mr. Blue Sky by Electric Light Orchestra DISC FIVE: Word Up! By Gun DISC SIX: I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing by Aerosmith DISC SEVEN: Glycerine by Bush DISC EIGHT: Always Look on the Bright Side of Life by Monty PythonBOOK CHOICE: An atlas LUXURY ITEM: A telescope CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing by Aerosmith Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
24/01/2134m 37s

Samantha Power

Samantha Power was the USA's youngest ever ambassador to the UN, during President Barack Obama’s second term, and is a writer and academic. She has just been invited to join president-elect Joe Biden's administration. Samantha was born in London but grew up in Ireland. At the age of nine, she moved to the US with her mother and younger brother following the breakdown of her parents’ marriage. Her first ambition was to be a sports broadcaster, but watching live footage of events in Tiananmen Square in 1989 led her to change course and she became a war correspondent instead, reporting on the conflict in Bosnia in the early 1990s. After returning to the US, she wrote a Pulitzer Prize-winning book in which she examined what she saw as America’s repeated reluctance to confront genocide in the 20th century.In 2013 she was appointed ambassador to the UN. She stepped down in 2017 and became professor of global leadership, public policy and human rights at Harvard. Shortly after this edition of Desert Island Discs was recorded, she accepted the role of Administrator of the US Agency for International Development. DISC ONE: Dancing Queen by ABBA DISC TWO: Morning Has Broken by Cat Stevens DISC THREE: Thousands Are Sailing by The Pogues DISC FOUR: Crazy by Seal DISC FIVE: Boots of Spanish Leather by Mandolin Orange DISC SIX: Why? (The King of Love is Dead) by Nina Simone DISC SEVEN: Tonight Will Be Fine by Teddy Thompson DISC EIGHT: A Million Years by Alexander BOOK CHOICE: A guitar LUXURY ITEM: The Irish Times Book of Favourite Irish Poems by Colm Tóibín CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Tonight Will Be Fine by Teddy Thompson Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
17/01/2135m 14s

David Olusoga, historian and broadcaster

David Olusoga is a historian, writer and broadcaster who has presented a range of programmes including the BBC’s A House Through Time and Civilisations. He is currently professor of public history at Manchester University.Born in Lagos, the second child to a Nigerian father and a British mother, David was brought up by his mother in Gateshead after his parents’ marriage broke down. As a child he and his siblings experienced sustained racism and he remembers school as a place of violence and cruelty. He credits his mother’s tenacity and her determination to educate her children for his later success in getting to university and establishing a career in television. His love of history developed from a young age, thanks to one of his teachers who taught him why an understanding of history matters. Watching television documentaries also opened up a world of possibility and David fondly recalls programmes from the 1980s presented by the historian Michael Wood, who made history seem cool in the eyes of the young schoolboy glued to the TV in his Gateshead council house.Last year David delivered the MacTaggart Lecture at the Edinburgh Television Festival in which he talked candidly about his loneliness at being the only black person on a production team and the difficulties he had trying to explain the racial implications of how, for example, people in Africa were often portrayed on screen. DISC ONE: Zombie by Fela Kuti DISC TWO: Roll on Buddy by Aunt Molly Jackson DISC THREE: Black Mountain Blues by Bessie Smith DISC FOUR: Just The Other Day by Dr Alimantado DISC FIVE: Dark Was the Night, Cold Was the Ground by Blind Willie Johnson DISC SIX: Last Kind Words by Geeshie Wiley DISC SEVEN: You Can't Blame The Youth (Live At The Record Plant '73) by Bob Marley & The Wailers DISC EIGHT: Precious Lord, Take My Hand / You’ve Got a Friend by Aretha Franklin BOOK CHOICE: The Collected Essays, Journalism and Letters of George Orwell: An Age Like This, 1920-40 LUXURY ITEM: Acoustic guitar CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Dark Was the Night, Cold Was the Ground by Blind Willie JohnsonPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley
10/01/2135m 1s

Colonel Lucy Giles

Colonel Lucy Giles is an officer of the British Army’s Royal Logistic Corps and is currently President of the Army Officer Selection Board - the first woman to take on this role. After attending her local comprehensive school in Wincanton, Somerset, she studied Biological Sciences at Exeter University where she joined the University Officers’ Training Corps, despite having no military background herself.After what she calls a “retrospective year out”, she joined the last female-only company at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and was commissioned into the Royal Corps of Transport in 1992, which became the Royal Logistic Corps the following year.Over a career spanning more than 25 years, she has served in over 20 countries including South Africa, Bosnia, East Timor and Sierra Leone. She was the first female Officer Commanding of 47 Air Despatch Squadron, enabling operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, and in 2015 became the first woman Commander of New College, Sandhurst. She was promoted to the rank of colonel in 2018. She is married to Brigadier Nick Post, and they have two children, Jess and Alex. In her spare time, she is a marathon runner.DISC ONE: The Day That Never Comes by Metallica DISC TWO: Heart-Shaped Box by Nirvana DISC THREE: Pilate's Dream (from Jesus Christ Superstar) by Barry Dennen DISC FOUR: Love Shack by The B-52’s DISC FIVE: Street Spirit (Fade Out) by Radiohead DISC SIX: For those in Peril on the Sea, a special arrangement by Lieutenant Colonel Simon Haw MBE, performed by Band of the Coldstream Guards and members of the Guards’ Chapel Choir DISC SEVEN: Fire by Kasabian DISC EIGHT: Big in Japan by Alphaville BOOK CHOICE: A book by Agatha Christie LUXURY ITEM: A jigsaw puzzle CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: The Day That Never Comes by MetallicaPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
27/12/2035m 50s

Sir Cliff Richard

Sir Cliff Richard makes a second trip to the island he first visited 60 years ago, when he had just turned 20, but had already topped the UK charts three times. Over the course of his career, Sir Cliff has released over 100 albums and sold well over 250 million records. His chart success in the UK has been eclipsed only by his hero Elvis Presley and one-time rivals, the Beatles.Born Harry Webb in Lucknow, India, Sir Cliff returned to the UK with his family in 1948: money was tight and the family of six shared a room until they were able to move into a council house. Sir Cliff’s father bought him a guitar for his 16th birthday and he initially performed in a skiffle band until he discovered rock ‘n’ roll and started a new band called the Drifters which later became the Shadows. His first hit single came in 1958 with Move It – often credited as being the first authentic British rock ‘n’ roll track – and he dominated the home-grown music scene of the late 1950s and early 1960s. During his long career Sir Cliff performed on screen in films including Summer Holiday and The Young Ones. He has fronted television shows, twice performed Britain’s entry in the Eurovision Song Contest and starred in two stage musicals. Today, at 80, he is still recording new songs and itching to get back on tour to perform his music in a post-Covid world. Sir Cliff's return to Desert Island Discs after 60 years is record-breaking: it's the longest time between appearances in the programme's eight decade history. DISC ONE: Rolling in the Deep by Aretha Franklin DISC TWO: What's Love Got To Do With It by Cliff Richard DISC THREE: Heartbreak Hotel by Elvis Presley DISC FOUR: I Honestly Love You by Olivia Newton-John DISC FIVE: It Is Well by Sheila Walsh Featuring Cliff Richard DISC SIX: I Can't Make You Love Me by Bonnie Raitt DISC SEVEN: Stayin' Alive by Bee Gees DISC EIGHT: High Water Everywhere by Joe BonamassaBOOK CHOICE: Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë LUXURY ITEM: A Gibson acoustic guitar CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: It Is Well by Sheila Walsh Featuring Cliff Richard Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
20/12/2035m 30s

Minette Batters

Minette Batters is the first woman to become President of the National Farmers' Union, representing 47,000 members. She was first elected to the post in 2018 for two years, and was re-elected in March 2020. Minette runs a tenanted family farm in Wiltshire. The mixed farming business includes cattle, sheep and arable, as well as the conversion of a 17th century barn into a wedding and events venue. Her father was a tenant farmer, and Minette adored helping him as a youngster, but the idea of taking on the farm herself seemed out of the question: her father strongly advised against it. Instead she took a Cordon Bleu course, graduated with distinction and ran her own catering business for 20 years. When her father retired, the lure of the land pulled her back and she took on the tenancy in 1998, despite the misgivings of many of her friends. Her campaigns on behalf of farmers include the initiatives Ladies in Beef and the Great British Beef Week. This year she has represented the views of NFU members during the Covid-19 crisis and the Brexit negotiations. DISC ONE: Green Green Grass of Home by Tom Jones DISC TWO: I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles) by The Proclaimers DISC THREE: Antonio Vivaldi: Spring From The Four Seasons: 1. Allegro by Nigel Kennedy (violin) and English Chamber Orchestra DISC FOUR: Give A Little Bit by Supertramp DISC FIVE: Silent Night by The Salisbury Cathedral Choir, conducted by David Halls DISC SIX: Eye of the Tiger by Survivor DISC SEVEN: The Wind Beneath My Wings by Bette Midler DISC EIGHT: I Vow To Thee My Country by Katherine Jenkins BOOK CHOICE: We're Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury LUXURY ITEM: A loaf of bread CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Give A Little Bit by Supertramp Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
13/12/2037m 14s

Professor Sir Jeremy Farrar

Professor Sir Jeremy Farrar is Director of the Wellcome Trust, a global charitable foundation which funds scientific research. He is a member of Sage, the scientific group currently advising the government on Covid-19.He is the youngest of six children and was born in Singapore. His mother was an artist and his father was a teacher, who worked around the world, and the family lived in New Zealand, Cyprus and Libya.After struggling to win a place a medical school, he trained as a doctor in London and then moved to Edinburgh to work as a neurologist. He switched to public health and was for 18 years the Director of the Oxford University Clinical Research Unit in Vietnam, where he worked on infectious diseases, including the re-emergence of bird flu in 2004. He was knighted for services to global health in 2019, and is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences and a Fellow of The Royal Society.DISC ONE: Under The Boardwalk by The Rolling Stones DISC TWO: The World Service Lillibulero theme, composed by Henry Purcell DISC THREE: Muezzin Call To Prayer, recorded by David Fanshawe DISC FOUR: Ulysses by Alfred, Lord Tennyson, read by Sir Simon Russell Beale DISC FIVE: Mallai Chroch Shli by Duncan Chisholm DISC SIX: Nabucco: Chorus Of The Hebrew Slaves from Verdi's Nabucco, by the Chicago Symphony Chorus, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Sir Georg Solti DISC SEVEN: 7 Seconds by Youssou N'Dour & Neneh Cherry DISC EIGHT: Love under the Moonlight by The Khac Chi EnsembleBOOK CHOICE: Other Men's Flowers: An Anthology of Poetry by A. P. Wavell LUXURY ITEM: A cricket bowling machine CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Love under the Moonlight by The Khac Chi EnsemblePresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
06/12/2037m 11s

Helen Oxenbury

Helen Oxenbury is an illustrator of children’s books whose work has featured in many very popular titles for younger readers including the award-winning We’re Going on a Bear Hunt, by Michael Rosen.Helen has won the Kate Greenaway Medal twice and was awarded a lifetime achievement award by the Book Trust in 2018. She attended the Ipswich School of Art and later the Central School of Art in London where she met fellow illustrator and her future husband, John Burningham.After the birth of her children she began illustrating children’s books, working at the kitchen table long after they’d gone to bed. Her work for Ivor Cutler’s Meal One, published in 1971, was praised by Spare Rib magazine for its portrayal of a single mother and her relationship with her young son.Helen came up with the idea of her baby board books in the late 1970s after the birth of her third child who suffered with eczema. Discovering that her daughter could be distracted from scratching by looking at baby catalogues, Helen created a series of board books placing babies and toddlers at their heart. Such a concept was unheard of at the time. From the late 1980s, Helen ensured that the babies and children featured in her books came from different ethnic backgrounds and her work in So Much by Trish Cooke has become a children’s classic. In We’re Going on a Bear Hunt, published in 1989, Helen’s pictures celebrated the joy of adventure and the bond between siblings.DISC ONE: America by Marilyn Cooper, Chita Rivera and Shark Girls DISC TWO: Mir Ist So Wunderbar by Ludwig van Beethoven, conducted by Mark Elder, performed by London Philharmonic Orchestra. Tenor: Andrew Kennedy, Soprano: Lisa Milne, Soprano: Anja Kampe, Bass: Brindley Sherratt DISC THREE: Tubby The Tuba by Danny Kaye DISC FOUR: Lullaby of Birdland by Erroll Garner DISC FIVE: Episode 1of Life In A Scotch Sitting Room Vol. II by Ivor Cutler ‎ DISC SIX: Schubert ’s Impromptu No. 3 in G flat D899 by Alfred Brendel, (piano) conducted by Sir Charles Mackerras DISC SEVEN: Singin’ in the Rain by Gene Kelly DISC EIGHT: Les Pecheurs de Perles, Act 1: Romance: Mi par d'udir ancora (Je crois entendre encore) by Beniamino Gigli, conducted by Eugene Goossens BOOK CHOICE: The Empire Trilogy by JG Farrell LUXURY ITEM: A bed with an unlimited supply of white linen sheets CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Les Pecheurs de Perles, Act 1: Romance: Mi par d'udir ancora (Je crois entendre encore) by Beniamino Gigli, conducted by Eugene GoossensPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
29/11/2037m 25s

Arsène Wenger, former football manager

Arsène Wenger was the manager of Arsenal FC for 22 years, becoming the longest-serving and most successful manager in the club’s history. He was born in Strasbourg in 1949 and grew up as the youngest of three children in the nearby village of Duttlenheim, where his parents ran a bistro. There he listened in to the daily conversations about football, which preoccupied the men of the village.After playing for his local team and studying for a degree in economics, Arsène made a career as a footballer in France for a decade, before moving into management. He coached in France, Monaco and Japan before joining Arsenal in 1996. At that point he was a complete unknown in English football, but soon proved his doubters wrong. He took a declining mid-table side to Premier League glory within two years, going on to win two further Premierships and a record number of FA Cups. In 2003-4 his so-called Invincibles achieved a record-breaking run of 49 matches without defeat.He also won a reputation as an innovator, changing his players’ diets and contributing to the globalisation of soccer by signing overseas players and scouting young talent from across the world. He was instrumental in building a new home for Arsenal, when the club moved from Highbury to the brand new Emirates Stadium Arsène retired from Arsenal in 2018 and took up a post as FIFA’s head of Global Football Development the following year. He is separated from his partner Annie Brosterhous. They have one grown-up daughter, Léa.DISC ONE: Could You Be Loved by Bob Marley And The Wailers DISC TWO: Imagine by John Lennon DISC THREE: Avec Le Temps by Léo Ferré DISC FOUR: Your Song by Elton John DISC FIVE: Évidemment by France Gall DISC SIX: The Wonder of You by Elvis Presley DISC SEVEN: Ne Me Quitte Pas by Jacques Brel DISC EIGHT: My Way by Frank Sinatra BOOK CHOICE: Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne LUXURY ITEM: A ball CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Avec Le Temps by Léo Ferré Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
22/11/2049m 24s

Sir Keir Starmer, Leader of the Opposition

Sir Keir Starmer is the leader of the Labour Party, and the leader of the opposition.Named after Keir Hardie, a founding father of the Labour party, he was elected leader seven months ago in the wake of Labour’s heavy defeat in the 2019 general election. He stood for, and won, the leadership on a platform of party unity but his resolve has been tested recently by factionalism and infighting. Following the publication of the highly critical Equality and Human Rights Commission report, he has vowed to tackle the issue of anti-Semitism in the party and heal division within the party ranks.He grew up in Oxted, Surrey, the son of a toolmaker and a nurse. His formative years were clouded by his mother’s debilitating illness: she suffered from Still’s disease, an autoimmune disease, and as a young boy he spent a lot of his time at her hospital bedside. His political awakening came at 16 when he joined the East Surrey Young Socialists and later he was one of the editors of the radical magazine Socialist Alternatives. After university he had a high-profile career as a human rights lawyer representing prisoners on death row and advising the new Police Service of Northern Ireland which was set up as part of the Good Friday Agreement. In 2008 he changed tack and became the director of Public Prosecutions before switching to politics. In 2015 he was elected to the House of Commons as MP for Holborn and St Pancras. DISC ONE: Out on the Floor by Dobie Gray DISC TWO: Symphony No. 6 in F major, op. 68 “Pastoral” (5th) Movement by Beethoven, conducted by Herbert von Karajan, performed by Berlin Philharmonic DISC THREE: Welcome to My World by Jim Reeves DISC FOUR: Falling and Laughing by Orange Juice DISC FIVE: Oh Happy Day by The Edwin Hawkins Singers DISC SIX: Three Lions by Baddiel, Skinner & The Lightning Seeds DISC SEVEN: Piano Concerto No.5, 2nd movement, Adagio un pocco mosso by Beethoven, performed by Jean-Efflam Bavouzet (pianist and director) and Swedish Chamber Orchestra DISC EIGHT: Bridge Over Troubled Water by Artists For Grenfell, featuring StormzyBOOK CHOICE: A very detailed Atlas LUXURY ITEM: A Football CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Piano Concerto No.5, 2nd movement, Adagio un pocco mosso by Beethoven, performed by Jean-Efflam Bavouzet (pianist and director) and Swedish Chamber OrchestraPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
15/11/2037m 8s

David Mitchell, novelist

David Mitchell has published eight novels, two of which – number9dream and Cloud Atlas – have been shortlisted for the Booker Prize. He has also translated two books on autism from Japanese, working with his Japanese wife: their son is on the autistic spectrum. While his work also includes writing for the screen and opera libretti, his main occupation has been, as one critic put it, “quietly pottering away at the frontier of fiction” for more than two decades. David is the son of two artists, and grew up near the Malverns, where his father worked in the art department of the Royal Worcester porcelain factory. After studying at the University of Kent, he worked in a bookshop, and moved to Japan in the mid-1990s to teach English. Here he met his wife and put his mind to writing. His first two novels were published while still living in Hiroshima. With each standalone novel, David is also adding to what he calls an uber-novel in which all of his books are part of a larger narrative, with characters flitting from one story to another, transported to a different time and place, but bringing a familiarity and a backstory with them. He now lives in County Cork, Ireland, with his wife and two children. DISC ONE: Sunset by Kate Bush DISC TWO: Requiem Op. 33b, For Mixed Choir A Cappela / Fyrir Blandadan Kór A Capella. Performed by Motet Choir Of The Hallgrím's Church, chorus Master: Hörður Áskelsson DISC THREE: Mercury by Sufjan Stevens, Bryce Dessner, Nico Muhli, James McAlister DISC FOUR: Un Dia De Noviembre by Zsofia Boros DISC FIVE: Anima by Milton Nascimento DISC SIX: Stylo by Gorillaz, featuring Bobby Womack and Mos Def DISC SEVEN: In a Sentimental Mood by Duke Ellington and John Coltrane DISC EIGHT: Sonata in F minor, K466, composed by Domenico Scarlatti, performed by Yevgeny Sudbin BOOK CHOICE: A book of Chinese characters (Kanji) LUXURY ITEM: A complete archive of Desert Island Discs CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Anima by Milton Nascimento Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor.
13/11/2036m 58s

Hilary McGrady, Director General of the National Trust

Hilary McGrady is Director General of the National Trust.She was born in Lisburn, Northern Ireland, in 1966, where her father was a builder while her mother looked after Hilary and her two older siblings. She spent her childhood roaming the fields near her home, 20 miles outside Belfast. She went to art college after school where she met her husband, Frank. Their relationship initially caused difficulty for her family who were staunch Protestants and unionists, while Frank’s came from a Catholic, nationalist area.After finishing her degree in Graphic Design, Hilary worked as a designer before moving into marketing and then into the charity sector for an organisation called Arts & Business. After working on Belfast’s ultimately unsuccessful bid to become European Capital of Culture she joined the National Trust in 2006 as regional director for Northern Ireland. She moved around the organisation, taking on ever bigger roles with every move, becoming Chief Operating Officer in 2014. She succeeded Dame Helen Ghosh as Director General in March 2018. Her major priority for the National Trust over the next decade is to tackle climate change and biodiversity, and she set out a ten-year plan in January 2020 to coincide with the Trust’s 125th anniversary.Hilary lives in County Antrim with her husband. They have three grown-up children, a dog and 16 ducks. She lists her interests as the arts, gardening and hill walking.DISC ONE: The Lark Ascending by Ralph Vaughan Williams. Conducted by Sir Andrew Davis, performed by Tasmin Little (violin) and BBC Symphony Orchestra DISC TWO: How Great Thou Art by Chris Rice DISC THREE: Blue Monday by New Order DISC FOUR: She Moved Through The Fair by Cara Dillon DISC FIVE: One by U2 DISC SIX: Just Say Yes by Snow Patrol DISC SEVEN: Gabriel's Oboe by Ennio Morricone DISC EIGHT: Paradise by George Ezra BOOK CHOICE: A Poem for Every Day of the Year by Allie Asiri LUXURY ITEM: Painting set and easel CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: She Moved Through the Fair by Cara DillonPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
01/11/2034m 52s

Chris Boardman, cyclist

Chris Boardman is an Olympic cyclist, businessman and the Cycling and Walking Commissioner for Greater Manchester. Both his parents were keen competitive amateur cyclists and they backed Chris as he gradually became interested in the sport as a teenager. He left school at 16, and trained as a carpenter to fund his cycling, and his love of making things has never left him. He met his wife Sally when they were teenagers and she supported him when he took time off work to train and compete. He became a household name in 1992 at the Olympics in Barcelona, as the first British cyclist to win a gold medal in 72 years. He moved on to road racing and wore the yellow jersey in the Tour de France on three occasions. After retiring from racing, he was instrumental in the success of Team GB cycling at subsequent Olympics, with his focus on how improvements could be made in all aspects of design. He also launched his own range of bicycles catering for elite and everyday cyclists, and as Greater Manchester's Cycling and Walking commissioner, he is finding ways to help people leave their cars at home. DISC ONE: Mr. Blue Sky by Electric Light Orchestra DISC TWO: Everybody's Free (To Wear Sunscreen) by Baz Luhrmann DISC THREE: Hurt Feelings by Flight of the Conchords DISC FOUR: The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy) by Simon and Garfunkel DISC FIVE: Barcelona by Freddie Mercury & Montserrat Caballé DISC SIX: Sympathy for the Devil by The Rolling Stones DISC SEVEN: Embrace Me, You Child by Carly Simon DISC EIGHT: Goodbye Yellow Brick Road by Elton JohnBOOK CHOICE: Feersum Endjinn by Iain M. Banks LUXURY ITEM: Butter CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy) by Simon and GarfunkelPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
25/10/2035m 27s

Professor Averil Mansfield, retired surgeon

Averil Mansfield is a retired vascular surgeon and was the first female Professor of Surgery in the UK when she was appointed in 1993.She was born in 1937 in Blackpool, where her father worked as a welder on the attractions at the Pleasure Beach. She was an only child and an avid reader when young. After perusing a library book on early advances in surgery, she decided, at the age of eight, that she wanted to become a surgeon. She studied at the University of Liverpool and spent her early working life in the city. Appointed a consultant surgeon in 1972, she moved to London eight years later with her second husband. She became a consultant vascular surgeon at St Mary’s Hospital in 1982 and remained there until her retirement in 2002.One of the leading vascular surgeons in the country in the 1990s, she was a key figure in proving the safety of vital life-saving vascular operations: the stroke-preventing carotid endarterectomy, an intricate procedure to unblock the carotid artery, and surgery to repair a thoracoabdominal aortic aneurysm. These surgeries have helped save thousands of lives by reducing the risk of strokes by 50%.In the early 1990s, she set up an initiative called Women in Surgical Training to encourage more women to take up the profession. In addition to becoming the first female Professor of Surgery in Britain, she was also the first elected Chairman of the Court of Examiners at the Royal College of Surgeons of England, served as Chair of the Stroke Association for five years following her retirement, and as President of the British Medical Association.She lives in London and has three step-children and six grandchildren from her late husband.DISC ONE: II. Waltz by Dmitri Shostakovich, conducted by Steven Sloane, performed by Radio Symphony Orchestra of Berlin DISC TWO: A Transport of Delight by Donald Swann & Michael Flanders DISC THREE: Piano Concerto No. 2in B Flat. Op.83 – 3. Andante – Piu adagio by Johannes Brahms, conducted by Andris Nelsons, performed by Hélène Grimaud (piano) and The Vienna Philharmonic DISC FOUR: Farewell to Stromness by Peter Maxwell Davies DISC FIVE: Quartet for Piano, Violin, Viola and Cello No. 1 in G minor K478: Allegro by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, performed by Daniel Barenboim (piano) Kian Soltani (cello) Michael Barenboim (violin) Yulia Deyneka (viola) DISC SIX: Pavane, Op. 50 by Gabriel Fauré, conducted by Yan Pascal Tortelier, performed by BBC Philharmonic and City of Birmingham Symphony Chorus DISC SEVEN: Dancing Queen by Abba, performed by Christine Baranski, Julie Walters and Meryl Streep DISC EIGHT: "Schwanengesang", Ständchen by Franz Schubert, performed by Peter Schreier (tenor) and András Schiff (piano)BOOK CHOICE: A book of poetry LUXURY ITEM: A grand piano CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Piano Concerto No. 2in B Flat. Op.83 – 3. Andante – Piu adagio by Johannes Brahms, conducted by Andris Nelsons. Performed by Hélène Grimaud (piano) and The Vienna PhilharmonicPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
18/10/2037m 47s

Baroness Floella Benjamin, DBE

Baroness Floella Benjamin DBE is a Trinidadian-British broadcaster, writer and politician. She became a familiar face to millions of viewers through her work on children's television, most notably on Play School, which she first presented in 1976. She was born in Trinidad in 1949, the second of six children. When her parents emigrated to the UK, she and her siblings were initially left behind with foster parents. After 16 months, the family was able to reunite, when the children travelled to England by sea. At first they all lived in one room in south London. Eventually her parents were able to buy a house in Beckenham, where they lived for 40 years - which is why Floella decided on the title Baroness Benjamin of Beckenham when she entered the House of Lords in 2010 as a Liberal Democrat peer. There was no hint of her later high public profile when she left school at 16 to work in a bank, until she dared to audition for a West End musical during her lunch break. She was successful, going on to appear in numerous London shows, before her move into television. Along with her work in front of the camera, she set up her own TV production company, as well as publishing books and working closely with charities for children and young people. She has also campaigned for high standards in children's broadcasting and more diversity in the creative industries.She was the Chancellor of Exeter University for a decade, starting in 2006, and earlier this year she received a Damehood for her services to charity.DISC ONE: The Greatest Love of All by George Benson DISC TWO: Waiting in Vain by Bob Marley and the Wailers DISC THREE: Puttin’ on the Ritz by Ella Fitzgerald DISC FOUR: Once by Stan Getz DISC FIVE: Begin the Beguine by Julio Iglesius DISC SIX: The Prince of Denmark’s March by Jeremiah Clarke, performed by the London Gabrieli Brass Ensemble DISC SEVEN: Are You Gonna Go My Way by Lenny Kravitz DISC EIGHT: Smile by Nat King Cole BOOK CHOICE: Dreams From My Father by Barack Obama LUXURY ITEM: A neck rest CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: The Greatest Love of All by George Benson Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
15/10/2036m 9s

Samantha Morton, actor

Samantha Morton is an actor and director. She has appeared in films directed by Woody Allen and Steven Spielberg, and is also known for her work on independent productions, often with serious themes such as prostitution and bereavement. She has been nominated for two Academy Awards and won many accolades including a BAFTA and a Golden Globe.Born in Nottingham in 1977, she had a difficult childhood. She was first taken into care as a baby, then spent the next decade between foster parents and her father’s home before being taken into care permanently at the age of 11. She was sexually abused in one of the homes, and left school at the age of 13.She discovered acting when a teacher recommended she apply to the Central Junior Television Workshop which lead to her appearing in TV series including Soldier Soldier, Cracker, and Band of Gold. She went onto appear in the films, Emma and Jane Eyre and received her first Academy Award nomination for her role as a mute laundress in Woody Allen’s 1999 film Sweet and Lowdown. Her second was for her portrayal of a grieving mother in the 2003 film In America.Other roles have ranged from Mary, Queen of Scots, in Elizabeth: The Golden Age to a war widow in The Messenger and the wife of a serial killer in Rillington Place. She made her directorial debut with The Unloved in 2009, a film based on her own experience of the care system. It won the BAFTA Award for Best Single Drama. Sam lives in Sussex with her husband, Harry Holm. They have two children together, Edie and Teddy. Sam also has a daughter, Esme, from her relationship with Charlie Creed-Miles. DISC ONE: Burden of Shame by UB40 DISC TWO: Flower by The Charlatans DISC THREE: The Town I Loved So Well (Live) by Luke Kelly And The Dubliners DISC FOUR: Must Be the Place (Naïve Melody) by Talking Heads DISC FIVE: Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space by Spiritualized DISC SIX: Blume (French version) by Einstürzende Neubauten DISC SEVEN: Dream Baby Dream by Suicide DISC EIGHT: I Remember by Molly Drake BOOK CHOICE: Light on Yoga: The Bible of Modern Yoga by B. K. S. Iyengar LUXURY ITEM: A photograph of Samantha's children CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space by SpiritualizedPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
04/10/2045m 26s

Yusuf Cat Stevens, musician

Yusuf Cat Stevens is a singer-songwriter who first enjoyed success more than 50 years ago. He was born Steven Demetre Georgiou in July 1948. His Greek Cypriot father and his Swedish mother ran a restaurant in the West End of London, and he helped out there from an early age. He also became interested in music, writing and singing his own songs, partly inspired by the success of The Beatles. Under the name Cat Stevens, he was just 18 when he had his first hit, and soon found himself on tour with Engelbert Humperdinck and Jimi Hendrix. His career came to a sudden halt in 1969, when he contracted tuberculosis and was forced out of the limelight for a year of recuperation. It was also a time of reflection. He emerged a changed man in 1970 - a sensitive singer-songwriter whose albums, including Tea for the Tillerman, and Teaser and the Firecat, sold millions of copies around the world. While enjoying fame and success, he also thought more deeply about religious faith, an interest which increased after he nearly drowned while swimming in the Pacific. He became a Muslim in 1977, changed his name to Yusuf Islam and walked away from music. He soon became one of the UK's most high-profile Muslims, and was often asked to comment about aspects of Islam. For two decades, he didn’t touch his guitar, but in 2006 he made a comeback with an album entitled An Other Cup. He has released three more albums since then and has recently recorded a new version of perhaps his best-known work, Tea for the Tillerman.Yusuf lives in Dubai with his wife Fawziah. They have four daughters and one son who has followed in his father's musical footsteps.DISC ONE: America from West Side Story by Anita (Rita Moreno), Bernado (George Chakiris), The Sharks And Girls DISC TWO: Tutti Frutti by Little Richard DISC THREE: Twist and Shout by The Beatles DISC FOUR: March From A Clockwork Orange (Beethoven: Ninth Symphony: Fourth Movement, abridged) by Wendy Carlos DISC FIVE: The Wind by Cat Stevens DISC SIX: Allah Uya by Ali Farka Touré DISC SEVEN: Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood by Nina Simone DISC EIGHT: As by Stevie Wonder BOOK CHOICE: The Masnavi I Ma'navi of Rumi: Complete by Maulana Jalalu-'d-din Muhammad Rumi (Author), E. H. Whinfield (Translator) LUXURY ITEM: Bendicks Bittermints CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: As by Stevie WonderPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
27/09/2035m 5s

Bernardine Evaristo, writer

Bernardine Evaristo won the Booker Prize in 2019 for her novel, Girl, Woman, Other. She is Professor of Creative Writing at Brunel University London.Bernardine was born in May 1959, the fourth of eight children, to an English mother and a Nigerian father. She grew up in Woolwich in south London, and was educated at Eltham Hill Girls’ Grammar School. She spent her teenage years at the Greenwich Young People’s Theatre and, after deciding that she wanted to be a professional actor at the age of 14, did a Community Theatre Arts course at the Rose Bruford College of Speech and Drama.After graduation she founded the Theatre of Black Women with two fellow students in the early 1980s and they began to write roles for themselves. By the late 1980s, she had decided that it was the writing she enjoyed most.Her first poetry collection was published in 1994, followed by a semi-autobiographical verse novel called Lara three years later. More books followed, experimenting with form and narrative perspective, often merging the past with the present, prose with poetry, the factual with the speculative, and reality with alternate realities. Girl, Woman, Other is her eighth book.A longstanding activist and advocate, Bernardine has initiated several successful schemes to ensure increased representation of artists and writers of colour in the creative industries.She is married to David, who she met in 2006, and lives in London.DISC ONE: Malaika by Angélique Kidjo DISC TWO: Zombie by Fela Kuti DISC THREE: Breaths by Sweet Honey in the Rock DISC FOUR: I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free by Nina Simone DISC FIVE: Woyaya by Osibisa DISC SIX: Köln, January 24, 1975, part I by Keith Jarrett DISC SEVEN: Things Have Changed by Bob Dylan DISC EIGHT: Fight The Power by Public Enemy BOOK CHOICE: The Norton Anthology of Poetry by Margaret Ferguson), Tim Kendall and Mary Jo Salter LUXURY ITEM: A hologram of Bernardine's husband CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Köln, January 24, 1975, part I by Keith Jarrett Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
20/09/2036m 46s

Your Desert Island Discs

Listeners choose the music that has been special to them during the weeks of lockdown. With Jane Moss, Hugh Mullally, Ailish Douglas, Professor Jason Warren, Niti Acharya, Margery Hookings, Simon Spiller, Clare Raybould and Garry Greenland.DISC ONE: Amazing Grace by Judy Collins DISC TWO: Who Knows Where The Time Goes? by Sandy Denny DISC THREE: The Whole of The Moon by The Waterboys DISC FOUR: Heimweh op. 57 Nr. 6: Homesickness, composed by Edvard Grieg, performed by Emil Gilels DISC FIVE: Ab Saunp Diya by Om Vyas DISC SIX: Prelude and The Sound of Music by Julie Andrews & Orchestra of St. Luke's DISC SEVEN: Over The Rainbow / What A Wonderful World by Israel Kamakawiwo'ole DISC EIGHT: Six Million Steps (West Runs South) by Rahni Harris & F.L.O Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
11/08/2051m 0s

Maria Balshaw, Director of Tate

Maria Balshaw is the Director of Tate, overseeing four major art galleries: Tate Britain, Tate Liverpool, Tate Modern and Tate St Ives.Maria was born in 1970 in Birmingham, and grew up in Northampton, where her father, Walter, was a parks officer, and her mother, Colette, was a teacher. She read English and Cultural Studies at the University of Liverpool and fell in love with the newly opened Tate Liverpool at Albert Dock. After working as an academic for almost a decade, she changed career and headed a government campaign to inspire creativity in schools.In 2006, she became director of the Whitworth gallery in Manchester, where she promoted works by women artists and oversaw a major redevelopment and expansion of the building. The Whitworth won the Art Fund Museum of the Year award in 2015. Maria also took on the roles of Director of Manchester City Galleries, and Director of Culture for Manchester City Council. The Observer called her “a northern powerhouse in her own right”.She took over leadership of the four Tate galleries from Sir Nicholas Serota in June 2017, and is the first woman to hold this role. Maria has two children from her first marriage and lives in Kent and London with her second husband, Nick Merriman, Director of the Horniman Museum.DISC ONE: Ghost Town by The Specials DISC TWO: Wild is the Wind by David Bowie DISC THREE: It's a Sin by Pet Shop Boys DISC FOUR: Love Hurts by Emmylou Harris with Gram Parsons DISC FIVE: Hope There's Someone by Antony and the Johnsons DISC SIX: Cantelowes by Toumani Diabaté DISC SEVEN: Waiting for the Great Leap Forward by Billy Bragg DISC EIGHT: Crown by StormzyBOOK CHOICE: Vickery’s Folk Flora: an A-Z of the Folklore and Uses of British and Irish Plants by Roy Vickery LUXURY ITEM: A full set of flower and vegetable seeds CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Waiting for the Great Leap Forward by Billy BraggPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
10/08/2035m 13s

Steve Backshall, explorer

Steve Backshall is an explorer, naturalist and broadcaster. His BAFTA-winning programmes bring viewers of every generation closer to nature – from the children's series Deadly 60, featuring close encounters with the most dangerous and venomous creatures on earth, to Blue Planet Live and Springwatch.His interest in the natural world began at a young age, after his parents decided to swap their terraced house for a smallholding with goats, ducks and geese. His big break as a broadcaster arrived when National Geographic offered him the post of Adventurer in Residence and he’s been taking on the most arduous challenges and toughest environments on earth ever since. He ran a marathon in the Sahara and has swum cage-free with great white sharks.His adventures have also brought him many near-death moments. He broke his back while rock climbing and recently almost drowned while kayaking in Bhutan.Steve is married to the Olympic champion rower Helen Glover, and they have a two year old son and twins born earlier this year. DISC ONE: Beautiful War by Kings of Leon DISC TWO: The Wind by Cat Stevens DISC THREE: Fake Plastic Trees by Radiohead DISC FOUR: Even After All by Finley Quaye DISC FIVE: I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles) by Ash Cutler and Rachael Hawnt DISC SIX: Last Goodbye by Jeff Buckley DISC SEVEN: 6 Words by Wretch 32 DISC EIGHT: This Life by Vampire Weekend BOOK CHOICE: One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez LUXURY ITEM: A guitar CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles) by Ash Cutler and Rachael Hawnt Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
02/08/2035m 44s

Sharon Horgan, writer, actor, producer

Sharon Horgan is a writer, actor and producer best known for co-writing and co-starring in the Channel 4 series Catastrophe with US comedian Rob Delaney.Sharon was born in 1970 in east London, where her parents Ursula and John were running a pub. They moved to Ireland when Sharon was three and eventually set themselves up as turkey farmers. Sharon went to a convent school, then art college in Dublin, before moving to London in 1990, hoping to become an actor. Following six years working at a job centre, she decided to get a degree and enrolled on an English course at Brunel University. She reconnected with Dennis Kelly, who she had acted with previously, and they started writing together. Their breakthrough was the BBC Three series Pulling, first broadcast in 2006, which chronicled the lives of three single women leading unfulfilling lives in an unfashionable part of London. Sharon appeared in films while continuing to write and, in 2014, set up her own production company. In 2015, together with Rob Delaney, she co-wrote and starred in the critically acclaimed Catastrophe, about a couple who discover they're expecting a child after a short affair. Sharon was nominated for a BAFTA Award for Best Female Comedy Performer and she and Rob won the BAFTA TV Craft Award for Best Comedy Writer in 2016. Catastrophe ran for four series, ending in 2019. Sharon's other writing credits include the acclaimed series Motherland, Divorce and This Way Up, while her most recent film role was in Military Wives, opposite Kristin Scott Thomas. Sharon is divorced from her husband, Jeremy Rainbird, and lives in London with her two daughters.DISC ONE: Rock n Roll Suicide by David Bowie DISC TWO: The Queen is Dead by The Smiths DISC THREE: Kid's Song by Mic Christopher DISC FOUR: Telephone Thing by The Fall DISC FIVE: The Only One I Know by The Charlatans DISC SIX: Everything Goes My Way by Metronomy DISC SEVEN: The Suburbs (continued) by Arcade Fire DISC EIGHT: Moments of Pleasure by Kate BushBOOK CHOICE: The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway LUXURY ITEM: A solar powered word processor CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Moments of Pleasure by Kate BushPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
26/07/2036m 7s

Annie Nightingale, DJ

Annie Nightingale was BBC Radio 1’s first female presenter and is its longest-serving DJ, celebrating her 50th anniversary at the station this year.Born and brought up in south west London, she fell in love with the romance and mystery of radio through her father’s meticulous tuning of their home set to broadcasts from exotic places like Prague and Hilversum. On leaving school at 17, she spent a year on a journalism course in central London.After relocating to Brighton, she worked her way up through local newspapers to the national press and magazines and eventually, by the mid-1960s, to TV. She interviewed the Beatles as a young journalist, and gave early support to artists including David Bowie, Ian Dury, Eminem and Primal Scream. In 1970, she was the first woman DJ to join Radio 1 with a Sunday evening show. From 1978 to 1982, Annie was the sole female presenter on the BBC TV music show The Old Grey Whistle Test, the only woman to have held the job. Her excitement for new music and musical genres from acid house to grime, hasn’t wavered.She currently hosts a weekly Radio 1 show called Annie Nightingale Presents… (on air on Wednesdays between 1 and 3 am) and has received countless awards from Caner of the Year to Commander of the Order of the British Empire, which she received this year for services to radio.Annie has a son and a daughter from her first marriage. She is twice divorced and lives in London.DISC ONE: Bury a Friend by Billie Eilish DISC TWO: Some People by Ethel Merman DISC THREE: Instant Karma! by John Lennon DISC FOUR: Too Many Fish in the Sea by Marvelettes DISC FIVE: Space Oddity by David Bowie DISC SIX: Freedom by Beyoncé Featuring Kendrick Lamar DISC SEVEN: Gymnopédies No. 1, composed by Erik Satie, conducted by Peter Breiner, performed by Gerald Garcia (guitar) and Slovak State Philharmonic Orchestra, Košice DISC EIGHT: My Way by Sid Vicious BOOK CHOICE: Catch 22 by Joseph Heller LUXURY ITEM: A saxophone CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Space Oddity by David Bowie Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
19/07/2035m 4s

Jens Stoltenberg, Secretary General of NATO

Jens Stoltenberg is the Secretary General of NATO and a former Prime Minister of Norway. Although he was born into a political family in Norway, he grew up thinking he would become a statistician, before turning to a career in politics. He served as the Prime Minister of Norway twice. During his second term, Norway experienced one of the darkest days in its recent history, when 77 people were murdered in a bomb attack in Oslo and a mass shooting on a nearby island.Before becoming the Secretary General of NATO, a post he has held since 2014, he spent time as a UN Special Envoy on climate change. His term in office as Secretary-General has been extended until September 2022. DISC ONE: Lift Me by Madrugada and Ane Brun DISC TWO: No Harm by Smerz DISC THREE: So Long, Marianne by Leonard Cohen DISC FOUR: Hungry Heart by Bruce Springsteen DISC FIVE: Make You Feel My Love by Ane Brun DISC SIX: Til Ungdommen by Ingebjørg Bratland DISC SEVEN: Free Nelson Mandela by The Special A.K.A. DISC EIGHT: From Up Here by Ingrid OlavaBOOK CHOICE: A statistics textbook LUXURY ITEM: A pair of skis CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Til Ungdommen by Ingebjørg Bratland Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah TaylorPhoto credit: NATO
12/07/2035m 4s

Helen Fielding, author

Helen Fielding, writer and journalist, is best known for creating Bridget Jones, who first appeared in a newspaper column in the Independent in 1995, in the form of a diary detailing the single 30-something’s exploits in London as she tried to make sense of life and love. The column soon acquired a wider following, and Helen turned Bridget’s story into a best-selling book the following year.Born in 1958, Helen grew up in Yorkshire with an older sister and two younger brothers. Her father was a manager at the textile mill next door to where they lived. She read English at Oxford where she became friends with Richard Curtis and Rowan Atkinson. After graduating, she became a BBC trainee, travelling to Africa for Comic Relief. She later made documentaries for Thames TV before moving into print journalism.To date, Helen has written four Bridget Jones novels, three of which have been turned into feature films starring Renée Zellweger. She spent a decade in Los Angeles at the start of the new millennium and had two children with Kevin Curran, who was a scriptwriter for The Simpsons. She now lives in London.DISC ONE: Fly Me to the Moon by Julie London DISC TWO: The Windmills of Your Mind by Noel Harrison DISC THREE: It Must Be Love by Madness DISC FOUR: Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, Op. 30, composed by Sergei Rachmaninov, conducted by Valery Gergiev and performed by Denis Matsuev (piano) and Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra DISC FIVE: La Isla Bonita by Madonna DISC SIX: I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor DISC SEVEN: I’ve Got the World on a String by Frank Sinatra DISC EIGHT: Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered by Stan Getz & The Oscar Peterson Trio BOOK CHOICE: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen LUXURY ITEM: A magical tree CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: It Must Be Love by MadnessPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
05/07/2038m 0s

Helen McCrory, actress

Helen McCrory shares the eight tracks, book and luxury she would want to take with her if cast away to a desert island. Helen McCrory OBE is one of the most versatile and critically acclaimed actresses working today. On screen she has played Anna Karenina, Cherie Blair (twice), Harry Potter's Narcissa Malfoy and the Peaky Blinders matriarch Aunt Polly. Her theatre roles range from Yelena in Uncle Vanya to Euripides' Medea. A diplomat's daughter, she spent her early childhood in Africa before continuing her education in the UK. After a bruising and unsuccessful audition at the Drama Centre in London - she was instructed to find out more about life before learning to act - she travelled to Italy where she discovered art and love and came back to try again. This time she passed the audition. In 1993 she made her mark in Richard Eyre's production of Trelawny of the Wells at the National Theatre and went on to perform leading roles on some of London's most prestigious stages, winning two Olivier Award nominations. She was awarded an OBE for services to drama in 2017.She met her husband, fellow actor Damian Lewis, when they both starred in a play called Five Gold Rings. In response to the Covid-19 pandemic Helen and Damian, together with the comedian Matt Lucas, co-founded the Feed NHS campaign which raises money to provide hot meals to frontline NHS workers. Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
28/06/2038m 57s

Mark Johnston, racehorse trainer

Racehorse trainer Mark Johnston is a lynchpin of British flat racing. In August 2018 - when 20-1 shot Poet's Society, ridden by Frankie Dettori, streaked to victory at York - Mark became the most prolific winning trainer in British racing history, saddling 4,194 winners. Based in a 300-acre training yard in Yorkshire, he has never trained fewer than 100 winners each season for the last 26 years including champions such as Attraction, Mister Baileys, Double Trigger and Shamardal.Mark grew up on a council estate in East Kilbride and learned to ride when he was a child. His father was a horse lover who enjoyed a flutter and took the young Mark to the bookies when he placed his bets - although Mark was too young to go inside. As a 14-year-old Mark raced whippets and later studied veterinary medicine at Glasgow University but his dream was always to become a racehorse trainer.In 1986, together with his wife and business partner Deirdre, Mark bought his first yard. He had no money or connections in the racing world and had three-and-a-half paying horses rather than the 12 he needed under the terms of his trainer's licence. In these early days, the horses trained on a nearby beach that doubled up as an MOD bombing range. Johnston horses are known for their front-running style - he believes races aren't won by horses accelerating and passing the other runners, but when the horses in front slow down. He says: "I tell my jockeys to bowl along at the speed the horse is happiest."DISC ONE: Get Down and Get With It by Slade DISC TWO: Pencil Full of Lead by Paolo Nutini DISC THREE: You May Be Right by Billy Joel DISC FOUR: You're Still The One by Deirdre and Angus Johnston DISC FIVE: Romeo and Juliet by Dire Straits DISC SIX: I Knew the Bride Dave Edmunds DISC SEVEN: Not Ready to Make Nice by Dixie Chicks DISC EIGHT: Don't Stop by Fleetwood Mac BOOK CHOICE: The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas LUXURY ITEM: A pair of binoculars CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Don't Stop by Fleetwood MacPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
21/06/2039m 4s

Joe Wicks, fitness trainer and author

Joe Wicks, professionally known as The Body Coach, is a fitness and nutrition coach. Since the lockdown, he has been running daily free virtual PE lessons for children and adults stuck at home. In March he became a Guinness World Record holder after his second PE with Joe class was watched by 955,158 people around the world, a record number of viewers for a live streamed YouTube workout. Getting children to be more active has been a long-held ambition and in 2019 he went on a tour of fifteen schools around the UK delivering High Intensity Interval Training workouts as part of his mission to get school children working out for 15 minutes a day.Born in 1985, Joe’s mother was nineteen when she gave birth to him while his father was in and out of his life with a heroin addiction. He was a hyperactive child whose salvation at school was channelling his excess energy into PE lessons.With a Sports Science degree under his belt, he briefly became a teaching assistant himself, but found it wasn’t for him and set himself up as a personal trainer instead, preaching the importance of combining training with the right nutrition. With the advent of the video function on Instagram, he started posting free 15-second recipes using the name The Body Coach, building up a following of first hundreds, then thousands and eventually millions.His phenomenally successful business began when he created a commercial 90-day plan with workouts and meals. He published Lean in 15 in 2015 which became the bestselling non-fiction book of the year, and he has since written eight further cook books.He married his wife, Rosie, in 2019 and the couple have two children, Indie and Marley.DISC ONE: Shotgun by George Ezra DISC TWO: Bright Side of the Road by Van Morrison DISC THREE: Three Little Birds by Bob Marley And The Wailers DISC FOUR: When You Were Young by The Killers DISC FIVE: Thunder Road by Bruce Springsteen DISC SIX: River by Leon Bridges DISC SEVEN: Nothing Can Change This Love by Sam Cooke DISC EIGHT: You’re Welcome by Dwayne Johnson BOOK CHOICE: Lord of the Flies by William Golding LUXURY ITEM: An acoustic guitar CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: River by Leon BridgesPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
14/06/2038m 17s

Martin Lewis, financial campaigner

Martin Lewis is a financial journalist, campaigner and broadcaster. His high-profile campaigns on bank charges, student finance, and mental health and debt have made headlines, and millions of people subscribe to his weekly money tips email. He founded the Money Saving Expert website in 2003 with just £100 and sold it less than a decade later for £87 million, although he calls himself an 'accidental entrepreneur'. He has since supported numerous groups and causes through charitable donations, most recently setting up a Coronavirus Poverty Emergency Fund to help small local charities. He has also campaigned for financial help and guidance for self-employed people who are unable to work during the current pandemic. Martin grew up in Cheshire and studied at the London School of Economics. After a brief spell working in financial PR, he took a postgraduate course in broadcast journalism with the aim of becoming a commentator on money matters, and he initially worked as a producer and presenter on radio and TV, DISC ONE: Livin’ La Vida Loca by Ricky Martin DISC TWO: Stand and Deliver by Adam And The Ants DISC THREE: Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off by Louis Armstrong & Ella Fitzgerald DISC FOUR: The Circle Game by Joni Mitchell DISC FIVE: (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction by The Rolling Stones DISC SIX: The Blue Danube, composed by Johann Strauss II, conducted by Sir Malcolm Sargent and performed by Royal Philharmonic Orchestra DISC SEVEN: I Fought the Lloyds by Oystar DISC EIGHT: Can’t Take My Eyes Off You by Frankie Valli And The Four Seasons BOOK CHOICE: A Game of Thrones: The Story Continues: The complete boxset of all 7 books (A Song of Ice and Fire) by George R.R. Martin LUXURY ITEM: Solar powered electric carving knife CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Livin’ La Vida Loca by Ricky MartinPresenter Lauren Laverne Producer Sarah Taylor
07/06/2036m 25s

Professor Dame Elizabeth Anionwu, former nurse

Elizabeth Anionwu is a retired nurse, campaigner and Emeritus Professor of Nursing at the University of West London. A fellow of the Royal College of Nursing, she spent 40 years in the profession and has been named one of the most influential nurses in the history of the NHS. Her career was distinguished by her pioneering work in the understanding of sickle cell disease - bringing better treatment and support to the thousands living with it. She was the first sickle cell and thalassaemia nurse counsellor in the UK.Her decades of dedication, care and service are a contrast to her own disrupted childhood as a mixed race child born out of wedlock in the 1940s, though it was the kindness of a nurse when she was just five that sparked a nascent interest in what would become her life’s work. After leaving school at 16, with seven O-levels, Elizabeth was made a Professor of Nursing in 1998.She left her day job behind in 2007, but as she puts it “it has not turned out to be a quiet retirement”. She spent nine years fundraising and campaigning for a statue to British-Jamaican nurse Mary Seacole. Unveiled in 2016 in the grounds of St Thomas’ Hospital, London, the statue is the first in the UK to represent a named black woman. Elizabeth received the DBE in 2017 for services to nursing and the Mary Seacole Statue Appeal.DISC ONE: Faith’s Song by Amy Wadge DISC TWO: The Rakes of Mallow, Girl I Left Behind by The Gallowglass Ceili Band DISC THREE: Manman by Leyla McCalla DISC FOUR: A Te,O Cara by Andrea Bocelli DISC FIVE: Missa Bilban by The Jamaican Folk Singers DISC SIX: I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free by Nina Simone DISC SEVEN: Nnekata by Flavour N'abania DISC EIGHT: My Girl by Otis Redding BOOK CHOICE: Dreams From My Father by Barack Obama LUXURY ITEM: A trampoline CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free by Nina Simone Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
31/05/2036m 44s

Charles Hazlewood, conductor

Charles Hazlewood is a conductor and the founder of Paraorchestra, the world's first professional ensemble of disabled musicians. Once described as the Heston Blumenthal of orchestral music, Charles has spent his career challenging Britain’s musical palate, exploding boundaries and expanding our ideas about what an orchestra can be - and do. His repertoire encompasses Beethoven, Bruckner and Barry White, and his critically-acclaimed projects include more than 100 world premieres and the first orchestral headline performance at Glastonbury. Paraorchestra, the ensemble he established in 2011, reached a global audience at the closing ceremony of the 2012 London Paralympics. He also co-founded an opera company in South Africa, and its production of Carmen, with a mainly black cast, won international acclaim. He studied music at Keble College, Oxford and was the Organ Scholar there. He won the EBU conductor's competition in 1995 and has had an international career as a conductor. DISC ONE: Somebody’s Gonna Off The Man by Barry White & The Love Unlimited Orchestra DISC TWO: A Rainbow in Curved Air by Terry Riley DISC THREE: Ach, ich fühls, composed by Mozart, conducted by Otto Klemperer and performed by Gundula Janowitz and Philharmonia Orchestra DISC FOUR: R. Strauss: 4 Lieder, Op. 27 - 4. Morgen! by Richard Strauss, conducted by Kurt Masur, performed by Jessye Norman and Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra DISC FIVE: Improvisation by Olivier Latry DISC SIX: Kraftwerk-Rewerk, composed by Charlotte Harding and Lloyd Coleman, conducted by Charles Hazlewood DISC SEVEN: Ndisakuthanda Mna, composed by Georges Bizet, performed by Pauline Malefane, Andile Tshoni and Dimpho Di Kopane, conducted by Charles Hazlewood DISC EIGHT: The Last Time/Ultima Vez by Pauline Oliveros BOOK CHOICE: A book of poetry by Ivor Cutler LUXURY ITEM: An espresso machine CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Ach, ich fühls, composed by Mozart, conducted by Otto Klemperer and performed by Gundula Janowitz and Philharmonia Orchestra Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
24/05/2038m 20s

Sinead Burke, disability rights activist and teacher

Sinead Burke is a disability rights activist and teacher. She has combined her love of education and style to campaign for more representation of diversity in the fashion industry. Born in Dublin, Sinead has achondroplasia – a genetic condition which causes restricted growth – and is 3’ 5” tall. She refers to herself as a “little person” and knew she wanted to be a teacher after her first day at school. She has used the classroom environment to discuss openly with her pupils the issues surrounding disability. She believes openness and kindness are the ways forward to develop understanding and respect.As a child she collected the September issues of Vogue and later on started writing a blog in which she held the fashion industry to account about diversity and representation. She continues to work towards greater inclusivity in fashion and her mission is to encourage people from diverse backgrounds to realise the industry is open to them whether as editors, designers or models. Last year she was selected as one of 15 trailblazing women to appear on the cover of the September issue of British Vogue. In 2018 Sinead spoke at the World Economic Forum in Davos – the only Irish female delegate. She has taken her message to the White House at the invitation of the Obamas and was appointed to Ireland’s Council of State to advise the president about disability rights.DISC ONE: Like A Girl by Lizzo DISC TWO: Awoo by Sofi Tukker, feat. Betta Lemme DISC THREE: Small Town Boy by Bronski Beat DISC FOUR: You Should See Me in a Crown by Billie Eilish DISC FIVE: I Put a Spell on You by Nina Simone DISC SIX: The Sound of Silence by Simon & Garfunkel DISC SEVEN: Vogue by Madonna DISC EIGHT: Samhradh Samhradh by The Gloaming BOOK CHOICE: Your Silence Will Not Protect You by Audre Lorde LUXURY ITEM: A necklace CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Like A Girl by Lizzo Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
17/05/2038m 15s

Simon Armitage, Poet Laureate

Simon Armitage was appointed Poet Laureate in 2019. His poems celebrate the everyday and the ordinary with wit and affection. But beyond the wood chip and washing lines he addresses the complexities and the profound feelings that underpin daily life. Born in Huddersfield, Simon Armitage grew up in the village of Marsden in West Yorkshire. Marsden has informed and inspired much of his work and as a boy he would look out of his bedroom window at night to watch the comings and goings of village life. He vividly remembers as a teenager discovering the work of fellow laureate Ted Hughes, recalling an almost electrical surge of excitement when he realised the power of words on a page. Hughes grew up in the next valley and Simon admits to thinking "If Ted Hughes can do it why can't I?" He worked as a probation officer in Manchester for several years, writing poetry in the evenings and at weekends. His first collection Zoom! was published in 1989 and a few years later he left the probation service to write full time. Prolific and popular, he was named the Millennium poet and in 2015 was appointed Professor of Poetry at the University of Oxford. Three years later he was awarded the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry.Today he lives not far from Marsden where, when he's not writing poems, plays and novels, he still looks out of his window and daydreams.DISC ONE: Moonage Daydream by David Bowie DISC TWO: The Lamb by William Blake, composed by John Tavener, conducted by Andrew Nethsingha and performed by The Choir of St John’s College, Cambridge DISC THREE: You've Got To Pick A Pocket Or Two by Jonathan Pryce and the 1994 London Palladium Cast Of Oliver! DISC FOUR: Icecrust and Snowflake by Ted Hughes DISC FIVE: Atmosphere by Joy Division DISC SIX: Tainted Love / Where Did Our Love Go? by Soft Cell DISC SEVEN: Holmfirth Anthem by Jon Rennard DISC EIGHT: My Heart’s in the Highlands by Else Torpe and Christopher Bowers-Broadbent BOOK CHOICE: The Oxford English Dictionary LUXURY ITEM: A tennis ball CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Moonage Daydream by David Bowie Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
10/05/2039m 57s

Brian Cox, actor

Brian Cox CBE is a Scottish actor whose career spans almost 60 years, from his early days sweeping the stage at his local theatre in Dundee to his current Golden Globe-winning role as the media patriarch Logan Roy in the HBO series Succession. He has appeared in more than 100 films, many television series, and has won two Olivier awards for his work on stage. Brian Cox was born in 1946, the youngest of five children, and grew up in a working-class household in Dundee. His father died of cancer when he was eight and his mother, who was receiving regular psychiatric treatment, was unable to take care of him. He moved in with his sister Betty and her family.He left school aged 14 with no qualifications, and started out as a stage hand and stage cleaner at Dundee Rep, before winning a place at drama school. Years of theatre work followed, alongside actors such as Laurence Olivier, John Gielgud and Albert Finney. His later stage roles include acclaimed performances as King Lear at the National Theatre, and Titus Andronicus for the Royal Shakespeare Company. On film, his work includes the first screen portrayal of Hannibal Lecter - renamed Lecktor - in Manhunter, and blockbusters such as The Bourne Identity, X-Men 2, Braveheart and Troy. He received a CBE in 2002, and lives in New York City with his second wife Nicole Ansari. DISC ONE: Bridge Over Troubled Water by Johnny Cash DISC TWO: Saturday Night at the Movies by The Drifters DISC THREE: The Air That I Breathe by KD Lang DISC FOUR: Get Back by The Beatles DISC FIVE: La quête by Jacques Brel DISC SIX: Both Sides Now by Joni Mitchell DISC SEVEN: God Only Knows by The Beach Boys DISC EIGHT: Don’t Get Me Wrong by The PretendersBOOK CHOICE: In Search of the Miraculous by P.D. Ouspensky LUXURY ITEM: A sewing kit CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: God Only Knows by The Beach Boys Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
29/03/2034m 15s

Dame Helena Morrissey, financier and campaigner

Dame Helena Morrissey is a former City fund manager and chief executive of a major investment company, who has also campaigned to boost the number of women in the boardroom. Newspapers regularly describe her as 'Superwoman', because alongside her many professional achievements, she's the mother of nine children. Helena Morrissey is the daughter of two teachers, and her drive was evident from an early age. She was - by her own admission - a 'manic Brownie', striving to gain the maximum number of badges, and she also played the piano to a high standard. She won a place at Cambridge University from her comprehensive school in Chichester, and on graduating, joined an asset management company in their New York office. On her return to London, she felt that she was denied promotion because she had a young baby. She moved to Newton Investment Management, and at the age of 35 she was appointed the CEO - a role she was not expecting to take. Under her leadership, the company's assets grew from £20 billion to £50 billion. In 2010 she established the 30% Club, campaigning for better female representation on the boards of British companies, and in 2017 she received a DBE for services to diversity in the financial sector. She lives in London with her husband Richard, who gave up full time work to look after their many children. DISC ONE: My Sweet Lord by George Harrison DISC TWO: Polonaise in A Flat, Op. 53, Heroic, composed by Frédéric François Chopin and performed by Arthur Rubenstein DISC THREE: We've Only Just Begun by The Carpenters DISC FOUR: Being Boring by Pet Shop Boys DISC FIVE: Moon River by Audrey Hepburn DISC SIX: Calm Down by The Clementines DISC SEVEN: Condolence by Benjamin Clementine DISC EIGHT: God Is by Kanye WestBOOK CHOICE: Much Obliged, Jeeves by P. G .Wodehouse LUXURY ITEM: A grand piano CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: My Sweet Lord by George HarrisonPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
22/03/2036m 6s

Daniel Radcliffe, actor

Daniel Radcliffe reached a global audience in the title role of the hugely successful Harry Potter films. He has also appeared on Broadway and in the West End, as well as in over a dozen films since the final part of the Harry Potter series was released in 2011. Born in 1989, the only child of Alan and Marcia Radcliffe, Daniel made his acting debut aged 10 in a BBC adaptation of David Copperfield. The following year he was cast as Harry Potter, and he and his co-stars, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint, would spend ten years filming the series. Daniel made a point of taking other roles before it had finished, and he appeared on stage in Peter Shaffer’s play Equus in 2007, a role which involved prolonged full frontal nudity. Since then he has appeared on screen, on stage and on television, playing characters from the beat poet Allen Ginsberg to a cop going undercover as a neo-Nazi, and his recent films include Guns Akimbo and Escape from Pretoria. In the theatre, he is appearing in Samuel Beckett’s Endgame in London. He supports the Trevor Project which works to prevent suicides among LGBTQ youth and which Daniel first became aware of during the Broadway run of Equus in 2008. Daniel has been in a long-term relationship with fellow actor Erin Darke who he met on a film set in 2012.Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
15/03/2055m 27s

Chris Riddell, illustrator, author and political cartoonist

Chris Riddell is an illustrator, author of children’s books and a political cartoonist. From 2015 to 2017, he was the Children’s Laureate, and he has won three Greenaway Medals for his work – more than any other illustrator.He was born in 1962 in Cape Town, South Africa, where his parents were both anti-apartheid activists. They moved to the UK when Chris was a year old. He grew up first in rural England, and later in south London where his father, a vicar, became chaplain of Brixton Prison.He started drawing as a young boy when he was given paper and pencils by his mother to keep him quiet during his father’s sermons. After school, he studied illustration under Raymond Briggs at Brighton Polytechnic and received his first commission while still at art school. As a writer his work ranges from picture books to chapter book series including Ottoline and Goth Girl, and as an illustrator he has frequently collaborated with authors such as Paul Stewart and Neil Gaiman.He started as a political cartoonist in the late 1980s and has drawn the Observer’s weekly cartoon since 1995, celebrating 25 years at the paper this year. As Children's Laureate, he encouraged children to draw, and championed the importance of school libraries and librarians.Chris is married to Jo, a fellow illustrator and printmaker, with whom he has three grown-up children, among them Katy, another illustrator. DISC ONE: Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis, composed by Ralph Vaughan Williams, conducted by Sir John Barbirolli, performed by Sinfonia of London DISC TWO: The Funeral: September 25, 1977 (Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika) by Thuli Dumakude DISC THREE: Smoke Signals by Phoebe Bridgers DISC FOUR: Final Day by Young Marble Giants DISC FIVE: Suzanne by Leonard Cohen DISC SIX: Horace in Brighton by Bird in the Belly DISC SEVEN: Klarinettenkonzert A-Dur K. 622 - 2. Adagio - I. Allegro. Composed by Mozart, directed by János Rolla, performed by Kálmán Berkes (clarinet) and Liszt Ferenc Chamber Orchestra, Budapest DISC EIGHT: Tabula rasa: II. Silentium composed by Arvo Pärt, conducted by Paavo Järvi, performed by Viktoria Mullova (violin) and Estonian National Symphony Orchestra BOOK CHOICE: Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Alice Through the Looking Glass, with the Tenniel illustrations. LUXURY ITEM: Sketchbooks and pens CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis, composed by Ralph Vaughan Williams, conducted by Sir John Barbirolli, performed by Sinfonia of London Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
08/03/2038m 28s

Dorothy Byrne, journalist

Dorothy Byrne is the head of News and Current Affairs at Channel 4, and has worked in journalism for more than four decades. In 2018 she received the Outstanding Contribution Award at Royal Television Society Journalism Awards, and her recent commissions include the Channel 4 News investigation into Cambridge Analytica, the Michael Jackson expose Leaving Neverland and the BAFTA-winning documentary For Sama, about one family’s life under siege in Aleppo, which also won an Oscar nomination. She began her career in journalism in her mid 20s on the Waltham Forest Guardian, after writing a cheeky letter to 50 local newspaper editors - just one responded. She later moved into television, joining the acclaimed World in Action team at Granada, where she argued that the programme's agenda was male-dominated and needed to change. Dorothy gave the MacTaggart Lecture at the 2019 Edinburgh International Television Festival, in which she argued that the scrutiny of politicians through broadcast interviews is important for the health of democracy. She also described herself as 'just about the oldest female TV executive working for a broadcaster'. DISC ONE: Greatest Living Creature by John Grant DISC TWO: Non-Alignment Pact by Per Ubu DISC THREE: I Know That My Redeemer Liveth, composed by George Frideric Handel, conducted by Sir Adrian Boult and performed by Dame Joan Sutherland and London Symphony Orchestra DISC FOUR: Teacher Don’t Teach Me Nonsense by Fela Kuti DISC FIVE: Dido's Lament: When I'm Laid In Earth, composed by Hendry Purcell, conducted by Raymond Leppard and performed by Jessye Norman and English Chamber Orchestra DISC SIX: World in Action by Matt Berry DISC EIGHT: The People United Will Never Be Defeated by Igor Levit BOOK CHOICE: Physics text books LUXURY ITEM: The back catalogue of In Our Time / the voice of Melvyn Bragg CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: I Know That My Redeemer Liveth, composed by George Frideric Handel, conducted by Sir Adrian Boult and performed by Dame Joan Sutherland and London Symphony Orchestra Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
01/03/2039m 21s

Melanie C

Melanie Chisholm - known as Melanie C - is a singer and songwriter who found global fame as one fifth of the Spice Girls, the most commercially successful female group ever. Melanie was one of 400 other hopefuls who answered an advertisement to form a new girl band in 1994 - little knowing how her life would be turned upside down by fame and worldwide success. She was given the nickname Sporty Spice and presented what she calls a "gobby' persona to the outside world, but inside she was a shy girl who preferred to stay in the background. She grew up in Merseyside and as a child she loved performing. At 16 she attended the Doreen Bird College of Arts, aiming for a career in musical theatre. By her early 20s, she was an international star: Spice world was a high-octane life of constant recording and touring and the accompanying press scrutiny contributed to a stressful environment. As the pressure intensified Melanie suffered from eating disorders and in 2000 she was diagnosed with depression. Her recovery was long and painful but she says finally getting a diagnosis enabled her to begin the process of getting better. When the Spice Girls went their separate ways for a while Melanie began a career as a successful solo artist. In 2009 she played Mrs Johnstone in the West End production of Willy Russell's musical Blood Brothers, earning five star reviews and standing ovations. Recently she has been back on stage with the Spice Girls on their stadium tour. DISC ONE: I Wish by Stevie Wonder DISC TWO: The Chain by Fleetwood Mac DISC THREE: Prince Charming by Adam and the Ants DISC FOUR: Into the Groove by Madonna DISC FIVE: Girls and Boys by Blur DISC SIX: Everything I Wanted by Billie Eilish DISC SEVEN: Heaven on Their Minds by Tim Minchin DISC EIGHT: You'll Never Walk Alone by Gerry & The PacemakersBOOK CHOICE: Dancing with Demons: The Authorised Biography of Dusty Springfield by Penny Valentine and Vicki Wickham LUXURY ITEM: A Martin acoustic guitar CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: I Wish by Stevie Wonder Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
23/02/2041m 0s

Ian Wright, former footballer and broadcaster

Ian Wright is a former professional footballer and now a football pundit on TV and radio. He began his career at Crystal Palace before moving to Arsenal where he became their highest goal scorer of all time, a record only surpassed eight years later by Thierry Henry.Born to a Jamaican couple in south-east London, Ian grew up with his mother and step-father. His biological father had left the family when Ian was under two years old. Things at home were difficult and Ian spent as much time as possible outside playing football.At his primary school a teacher, Mr Pigden, took him under his wing and Ian would later credit him with changing his life. He left his secondary school at the age of 14 to get a job. Although he took part in trials for many professional football clubs as a teenager, he was never selected. He continued to play for amateur sides. By the age of 21, he had three children to provide for, so when Crystal Palace came calling in 1985, he turned them down three times before accepting a two-week trial, followed by a three-month contract. His football career had finally begun.After impressing as a forward at Palace, he was bought by Arsenal for a record fee in 1991. He was called up to the England squad the same year and would go on to collect 33 caps. He spent his last couple of years in professional football at a number of clubs around the country and in total, he played 581 league games, scoring 387 goals for seven clubs in England and Scotland. Since his retirement from football in 2000, he has had a career as a pundit on both TV and radio. He has eight children and has been happily married to his second wife, Nancy, since 2011.DISC ONE: The Marriage of Figaro: Duettino - Sull'aria by Orchestra of the Deutsche Oper Berlin, composed by Lorenzo Da Ponte and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart DISC TWO: Looking For You by Kirk Franklin DISC THREE: River Deep Mountain High by Ike and Tina Turner DISC FOUR: Redemption Song by Bob Marley & The Wailers DISC FIVE: Mysteries of the World by MSFB DISC SIX: Endlessly by Randy Crawford DISC SEVEN: Crown by Stormzy DISC EIGHT: Just Fine by Mary J BligeBOOK CHOICE: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime by Mark Haddon LUXURY ITEM: A seven iron golf club and golf balls CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Endlessly by Randy CrawfordPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
16/02/2046m 55s

Zoe Ball, broadcaster

Zoe Ball is a radio and television presenter. She became the first woman to present the BBC Radio 1 Breakfast Show in 1997, and then the first woman to present the Radio 2 Breakfast Show in 2019. Zoe grew up in Buckinghamshire with her father – TV presenter Johnny Ball – and her stepmother. After working behind the scenes in TV as a runner and researcher, she first moved into the spotlight hosting children's programmes, including the very successful BBC Saturday morning show Live & Kicking, with Jamie Theakston. In the late 1990s, coinciding with her move to the Radio 1 Breakfast Show, she found herself described in the press as a 'ladette', enjoying the partying culture of the time. Further headlines followed her marriage to superstar DJ Norman Cook - Fatboy Slim - in 1999. She decided to leave Radio 1 in 2000, and her first child, Woody, was born later that year. She and Norman announced their separation in 2016. Zoe was a contestant on Strictly Come Dancing, and has presented Strictly: It Takes Two since 2011. In 2018, she cycled 350 miles from Blackpool to Brighton as part of Sport Relief, and to raise awareness of mental health, after her partner Billy Yates took his own life. She began presenting the Radio 2 Breakfast Show just over a year ago. She lives in Sussex with her two children, Woody and Nelly.DISC ONE: Where Am I Going? by Barbra Streisand DISC TWO: Georgy Porgy (Disco Version) by Toto feat. Cheryl Lynn DISC THREE: Righteous by Ocean Wisdom feat. Rodney P & Roots Manuva DISC FOUR: Shoot You Down by The Stone Roses DISC FIVE: Love Having You Around by First Choice DISC SIX: Do I Love You (Indeed I Do) by Frank Wilson DISC SEVEN: Truth by Kamasi Washington DISC EIGHT: You Can't Always Get What You Want by The Rolling Stones BOOK CHOICE: A dictionary LUXURY ITEM: A potting shed, gardening tools and seeds CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Truth by Kamasi Washington Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
09/02/2038m 4s

Sonita Alleyne, Master of Jesus College, Cambridge

Sonita Alleyne is the Master of Jesus College, Cambridge, the first woman to hold the post and - more significantly - the first black master of any Oxbridge college. In her previous career in the media, she was the co-founder and former CEO of the production company Somethin’ Else. Born in Barbados, she came to England aged three and grew up in East London, the youngest of three children. She was an able reader by the time she started primary school, and her potential was spotted at her secondary school, where she was encouraged to apply to Cambridge.She read philosophy at Fitzwilliam College and, after a brief and unfulfilling spell selling life insurance, she followed her passion for jazz by starting to write for music magazines. In 1989 she joined the radio station Jazz FM. When she was made redundant a couple of years later, she and two former Jazz FM colleagues set up a production company they called Somethin’ Else. Sonita stepped down as CEO in 2009 to concentrate on other boardroom roles. She served on the BBC Trust for nearly five years, sits on the board of the London Legacy Development Corporation, and founded the Yes Programme to show primary school pupils their future career options. She is a fellow of the Radio Academy and a Fellow of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts.Sonita began her ten year tenure as Master of Jesus College in October 2019. She lives in Cambridge with her partner, the screenwriter James McCarthy, and their teenage son.DISC ONE: I’ve Known Rivers by Gary Bartz & NTU Troop DISC TWO: Les Fleurs by Minnie Riperton DISC THREE: Key To The World by L J Reynolds DISC FOUR: Martha by Tom Waits DISC FIVE: Tennessee by Arrested Development DISC SIX: To Forgive But Not Forget by Outside DISC SEVEN: Last Train to Clarksville by Cassandra Wilson DISC EIGHT: Swing Low Sweet Chariot by Marvin “Hannibal” Peterson BOOK CHOICE: Coming Through Slaughter by Michael Ondaatje LUXURY ITEM:A genie in a lamp which would only work within the confines of the island CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE:Les Fleurs by Minnie Riperton Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
02/02/2039m 31s

Anne Enright, writer

Anne Enright won the Booker Prize for her fourth novel, The Gathering, in 2007, and was appointed the inaugural Laureate for Irish Fiction in 2015. She has written seven novels, two collections of short stories and a book of essays about motherhood and her work has been widely translated. Born in Dublin in 1962, Anne is the youngest of five children. She was a voracious reader from an early age, finishing every children's book at her local library. When she was 16, she won a scholarship to study at a school in Canada, and then returned to Ireland for a degree in English and Philosophy at Trinity College, Dublin. After taking an MA in Creative Writing at University of East Anglia, with teaching from Angela Carter and Malcolm Bradbury, she worked for six years as a TV producer for the Irish broadcaster RTE. When her TV work left her feeling burned out, she began her writing career in earnest. Her book of short stories, The Portable Virgin, won the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature in 1991, and she published her first novel, The Wig My Father Wore, in 1995. Her latest novel, The Actress, is published in February 2020.She is also now a Professor at University College Dublin and teaches creative writing. She met her theatre director husband, Martin Murphy, at university and they have two children. DISC ONE: Brahms Intermezzos: Op. 117, No.1 by Glenn Gould DISC TWO: Jersey Girl by Tom Waits DISC THREE: A Case Of You by Joni Mitchell DISC FOUR: Then You’ll Remember Me by Dé Danann DISC FIVE: The Man Comes Around by Johnny Cash DISC SIX: Hiawatha by Laurie Anderson DISC SEVEN: Tower of Song by Leonard Cohen DISC EIGHT: Soave sia il vento from Cosi fan Tutte, composed by Mozart, conducted by Karl Böhm, performed by Elizabeth Schwarzkopf, Walter Berry, Christa Ludwig and Philharmonia Orchestra. BOOK CHOICE: 'In Search of Lost Time’ by Marcel Proust LUXURY ITEM: High thread-count cotton sheets CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Soave sia il vento from Cosi fan Tutte, composed by Mozart Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
26/01/2037m 23s

Dame Sue Campbell, Director Women's Football at the FA

Dame Sue Campbell is the Director of Women’s Football at the Football Association. The women’s game has become increasingly popular recently and last year the England team - the Lionesses - made it to the World Cup semi-finals.Born in 1948, just outside Nottingham, Sue was sporty from an early age, even changing schools to allow her to play football. She became a PE teacher in Manchester and realised how transformative sport could be, increasing self-esteem, motivation and self-belief. In the mid-1980s, after learning about excellence in sport at Loughborough University and playing netball for England as well as dabbling in the pentathlon, Sue became deputy chief executive (and a year later chief executive) of the National Coaching Foundation, which provided education for coaches at both ends of the spectrum, from parent volunteers to elite coaches.Ten years later, in 1995, she co-founded the Youth Sport Trust to set up a sports activity programme for every primary school in the country. It was hugely successful: in 2003 only 23% of school children were getting two hours of PE a week. By 2008, this figure had risen to 95%. In 2010, the coalition government cut their funding.By this time, back at the elite end of the sporting spectrum, Sue was also in charge of UK Sport, where she presided over Team GB's biggest Olympic medal haul in living memory, at the London 2012 games. In 2016, she took her current job as head of Women’s Football at the FA. She has also been a cross-bench peer in the House of Lords since 2008.BOOK CHOICE: The Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela LUXURY ITEM: A photo album CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Music Of My Heart by Gloria Estefan And *N SYNCPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
19/01/2052m 52s

Michael Lewis, writer

Michael Lewis is a best-selling non-fiction writer and journalist. He initially worked for an investment bank, and his experiences of Wall Street excess in the 1980s informed his acclaimed first book, Liar’s Poker. Three of his later books – Moneyball, The Blind Side and The Big Short – have been adapted into Hollywood feature films. He was born in New Orleans in 1960, where his father was fond of quoting the family motto: 'Do as little as possible, and that unwillingly, for it is better to receive a light reprimand than perform an arduous task.' After studying at Princeton and the LSE, he joined an American bank in London, and wrote articles about the quirks of the industry under a pseudonym. In spite of his father’s opposition, he decided to quit his highly-paid job to become a writer. In Moneyball, he examined how a struggling baseball team used intensive data analysis to find undervalued players overlooked by richer clubs. The Big Short focused on the sub-prime mortgage crisis, and his most recent book, The Fifth Risk, is about the Trump administration’s approach to government.Michael lives in California with his wife, Tabitha Soren, and their three children.BOOK CHOICE: A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole LUXURY ITEM: A photo album CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Old Days by ChicagoPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
12/01/2036m 33s

Rupert Everett, actor

Rupert Everett is an actor, writer and director whose breakthrough came in 1981 when he was cast as a gay schoolboy in Another Country, Julian Mitchell's play and subsequent film. Rupert later starred in Dance with a Stranger before making a splash in Hollywood playing Julia Roberts's gay confidante in My Best Friend's Wedding. But his movie career took a dive after The Next Best Thing - in which he played the gay father of Madonna's baby - flopped. After a period out of the limelight he turned his attention to writing and won great acclaim for his witty and illuminating memoirs about his life in showbusiness. In 2018 Rupert starred in his directorial debut, The Happy Prince - a film about Oscar Wilde's final years in exile. The film was a decade-long labour of love for Rupert from writing the screenplay to securing the funding and persuading his friends Colin Firth and Emily Watson to join the cast. The film was well-received, with one critic calling it a 'deeply felt, tremendously acted tribute to courage'. Later this year Rupert is starring in the Broadway revival of Edward Albee's Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?BOOK CHOICE: Travels with my Aunt by Graham Greene LUXURY ITEM: Vegetables CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Being Boring by Pet Shop Boys Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Paula McGinley
09/01/2037m 59s

Stephen Merchant, writer, comedian and actor

Stephen Merchant first came to fame with the TV sitcom The Office, which he co-wrote and co-directed with Ricky Gervais. He continued to work with Gervais on the series Extras, Life is Short and An Idiot Abroad. His comedy hero as a young man was John Cleese and as a fellow tall West Country boy, he felt he would try his hand at a comedy career. As a teenager, he worked at Radio Bristol, was a wedding DJ and enjoyed drama at school. While at Warwick University, he created his own radio programme, The Steve Show. Those radio production skills encouraged him to send in his CV to a new London radio station, XFM, where the head of speech was Ricky Gervais. Following a successful interview – conducted in a pub – Stephen became Ricky’s assistant.Stephen left XFM to join a BBC training scheme. It was the short film he made with Ricky as part of his course which would eventually lead to the creation of The Office. Alongside his successful comedy partnership with Gervais, Stephen has pursued his acting and writing ambitions and this year wrote and directed his first film, Fighting with my Family, based on a family of wrestlers. His performance as a stand-up led to his HBO series Hello Ladies, and he starred in his first stage play, Richard Bean's The Mentalists, in London in 2015. His work has earned him two Golden Globe Awards, three BAFTAs, a Primetime Emmy Award, and four British Comedy Awards.DISC ONE: Whole of The Moon by The Waterboys DISC TWO: Raspberry Beret by Prince DISC THREE: Babies by Pulp DISC FOUR: Regulate (Jammin' Remix) by Warren G featuring Nate Dogg and Michael McDonald DISC FIVE: Thunder Road by Bruce Springsteen DISC SIX: A Case of You by Joni Mitchell DISC SEVEN: Change of the Guard by Kamasi Washington DISC EIGHT: Love Letter by Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds BOOK CHOICE: Roger's Profanisaurus by Viz and Roger Mellie LUXURY ITEM: A piano CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Thunder Road by Bruce Springsteen Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
22/12/1947m 15s

Heidi Thomas, screenwriter

Heidi Thomas is a screenwriter and playwright best known for Call the Midwife. The BBC TV series, which began in 2012, was originally a six part adaptation of a trilogy of memoirs by Jennifer Worth, recalling her experiences as a midwife in the East End of London. It was an immediate hit, with 10 million viewers a week, becoming one of BBC One’s most popular dramas and a fixture in the Christmas schedules. Born in 1962, Heidi Thomas grew up as the eldest of three children in the leafy suburbs of Liverpool. Her father ran a drain cleaning business while her mother looked after the children, including Heidi’s youngest brother David, who was born with Down’s Syndrome.Heidi studied English at Liverpool University, supporting herself by selling ladies’ underwear at a department store. During a bout of viral hepatitis, which left her unable to apply for jobs when she graduated, she entered a competition for new plays and won a prize for her debut, All Flesh is Grass. During the production,of her next play, Shamrocks and Crocodiles, she met the actor Stephen McGann. They went on to marry, and many years later Stephen was cast as the GP in Call the Midwife.After nearly a decade in the theatre, Heidi made the leap into television, first writing on existing series such as Soldier, Soldier and Doctor Finlay. Her other screenwriting credits include Lilies, based on her grandmother’s recollections, and adaptations of classic novels including Elizabeth Gaskell’s Cranford, Noel Streatfeild’s Ballet Shoes and Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women. DISC ONE: You Belong to Me by The Duprees DISC TWO: Penny Lane by The Beatles DISC THREE: Gentle on my Mind by Dean Martin DISC FOUR: Who Will Sing Me Lullabies? by Kate Rusby DISC FIVE: The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face by Roberta Flack DISC SIX: Finishing The Hat by Josh Groban DISC SEVEN: Agnus Dei from Requiem, op. 48, conducted by Nigel Short and performed by London Symphony Orchestra Chamber Ensemble and Tenebrae DISC EIGHT: Both Sides, Now by Joni Mitchell BOOK CHOICE: London Labour and the London Poor by Henry Mayhew LUXURY ITEM: A hot water bottle CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Both Sides, Now by Joni MitchellPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
15/12/1953m 4s

Professor Russell Foster, professor of circadian neuroscience

Professor Russell Foster is head of the Sleep and Circadian Neuroscience Institute at the University of Oxford, professor of circadian neuroscience and the director of the Nuffield Laboratory of Ophthalmology. An expert in sleep, he describes it as 'the single most important health behaviour we have'. Born in 1959, as a child he loved his toy microscope and digging up fossils. Despite being labelled “entirely non-academic” by his headmaster and attending remedial classes for some years, he achieved three science A levels which won him a place at the University of Bristol.There, he developed an early interest in photo-receptors - cells which convert light into signals that can stimulate biological processes. This eventually led to his post-doctoral discovery, in 1991, of a previously unknown type of cell – photosensitive retinal ganglion cells – in the eyes of mice. His proposition that these ganglion cells – which are not used for vision, but to detect brightness – exist in humans too initially met with scepticism from the ophthalmological community. Russell’s research has made a significant impact, proving that our eyes provide us with both our sense of vision and our sense of time, which has changed the clinical definition of blindness and the treatment of eye disease. He has published several popular science books.Russell is married to Elizabeth Downes, with whom he has three grown-up children.DISC ONE: Ode to Joy from the 4th movement of Symphony No. 9, conducted by Wilhelm Furtwängler, performed by Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Elisabeth Höngen, Hans Hopf, Otto Edelman and the Bayreuth Festival Orchestra DISC TWO: Die Walkϋre Act 3, Finale, from Der Ring des Nibelungen, sung by Hans Hotter and performed by Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra and Vienna State Opera Chorus DISC THREE: Don Giovanni, K. 527: Mi tradi quell'alma ingrata by Kiri Te Kanawa DISC FOUR: Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) by Eurythmics DISC FIVE: (Nimrod): Adagio by BBC Symphony Orchestra DISC SIX: Title: Chasing Sheep Is Best Left To Shepherds by The Michael Nyman Band DISC SEVEN: The Mikado, Act II: The Sun Whose Rays by The D'Oyly Carte Opera Company DISC EIGHT: Let’s Misbehave by Irving Aaronson BOOK CHOICE: The collected works of Adrian John Desmond LUXURY ITEM: A mask, snorkel, flippers and underwater camera CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Die Walkϋre Act 3, Finale, from Der Ring des Nibelungen, sung by Hans Hotter and performed by Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra and Vienna State Opera ChorusPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
08/12/1941m 31s

Asif Kapadia, film director

Asif Kapadia is an Academy Award-winning film director, renowned for his documentaries about the musician Amy Winehouse, the Brazilian motor racing star Ayrton Senna, and the Argentinian footballer, Diego Maradona.Born in 1972, Asif is the youngest of five children. His parents emigrated from Gujarat in the mid-1960s. His father’s ambition to seek his fortune took the family to the US for a short time in the late 70s, but by 1980 they had returned to London. Asif grew up in Hackney, and describes his all-boys secondary school as tough. His mother was ill while he was taking his GCSEs, and he vowed never to sit exams again. At 17, he worked as a runner on a film and so enjoyed feeling part of a crew that he decided he wanted to make a career in the industry.He studied film at the Newport Film School, going on to the Polytechnic of Central London where his graduation film, Indian Tales, was highly regarded. His 1997 Royal College of Art graduation film, The Sheep Thief, shot in Rajasthan in the Hindi language, won a prize at Cannes. He made two feature films, The Warrior which won two Baftas, and Far North, which was filmed close to the North Pole. His first documentary was Senna, which was widely acclaimed and won two Baftas. Asif used the same collage technique - drawing on camcorder snippets, TV news, and entertainment specials – on Amy, his film about Amy Winehouse. It won an Oscar, a Bafta and a Grammy Award and surpassed Senna to become the highest grossing documentary of all time in the UK. His latest documentary is about the footballer Diego Maradona: he calls it “the third part of a trilogy about child geniuses and fame”. Asif is married to Victoria Harwood with whom he has two sons.DISC ONE: Tears Dry On Their Own by Amy Winehouse DISC TWO: Good Times by Chic DISC THREE: Kabhi Kabhi Mere Dil Mein by Lata Mangeshka And Mukesh DISC FOUR: Rebel Without a Pause by Public Enemy DISC FIVE: No Good (Start The Dance) by The Prodigy DISC SIX: Man With A Harmonica by Orchestra Ennio Morricone DISC SEVEN: A Morte by Antônio Pinto DISC EIGHT: Just by Radiohead BOOK CHOICE: The Autobiography of Malcolm X, by Malcolm X and Alex Haley LUXURY ITEM: A polaroid camera with film from the seventies CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Man With A Harmonica by Orchestra Ennio Morricone Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
01/12/1938m 58s

Isabella Tree, writer and conservationist

Isabella Tree is a conservationist and writer of the award-winning book Wilding: the Return of Nature to a British Farm, which tells the story of rewilding a 3,500 acre farm estate in Sussex, which she oversaw with her husband Charlie. The adopted daughter of Michael Tree and Lady Anne Cavendish, Isabella grew up in Mereworth Castle in Kent, and then in Shute House, a vicarage in Dorset. Following her expulsion from two secondary schools, she attended Millfield School as a sixth former, where mutual friends introduced her to her future husband. After reading classics at the University of London, she went on to work as a journalist and travel writer for the Evening Standard and The Sunday Times. Her first book, The Bird Man, about the Victorian ornithologist John Gould, was published in 1991. She married Charles Burrell in 1993 and settled at Knepp, a dairy and arable farm in Sussex. She continued to travel, writing books about Papua New Guinea, Nepal and Mexico.In 2000 Isabella and Charlie closed the farm business at Knepp, and turned the estate into a conservation project, letting the land develop on its own, and eventually introducing free-roaming animals – cattle, pigs, deer and ponies. Two decades later, the project has seen extraordinary increases in wildlife, fungi, and vegetation with extremely rare species like turtle doves, nightingales, peregrine falcons and purple emperor butterflies breeding there. The soil is richer in micro-organisms which help to recapture carbon from the air and promote a functioning ecosystem where nature is given as much freedom as possible. She lives at Knepp with her husband Charlie and has two children, Ned and Nancy.DISC ONE: ‘The Whole of the Moon’ by The Waterboys DISC TWO: ‘These Foolish Things’ by Billie Holiday DISC THREE: ‘Life’s a Gas’ by T. Rex DISC FOUR: ‘Where’s the Telephone Bill? by Bootsy’s Rubber Band DISC FIVE: ‘Three Little Birds’ by Bob Marley DISC SIX: Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet, played by the Brindisi String Quartet DISC SEVEN: BBC Sound recording of Nightingales And Bombers The Night Of The Mannheim Raid DISC EIGHT: ‘Dancing in the Moonlight’ by ToploaderBOOK CHOICE: War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy LUXURY ITEM: Mask, snorkel and a neoprene vest CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: These Foolish Things by Billie HolidayPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
24/11/1940m 35s

Stephen Graham, actor

Stephen Graham is an actor, whose credits include key roles in films including This is England and The Irishman, and in TV dramas such as Boardwalk Empire and Line of Duty. Stephen was born in Kirkby just outside Liverpool in 1973. He discovered acting at school, where a starring role in a production of Treasure Island at the age of 10 was a turning point: local actor Andrew Schofield was in the audience and suggested that Stephen should join the Everyman Youth Theatre in Liverpool. After leaving school, Stephen won a place to study drama in London, but left after a year. His first roles as a professional actor, when he once pretended to be his own agent to talk his way into an audition, gave little indication of the success to come. In 2006, his performance as Combo the skinhead in This is England, directed by Shane Meadows, won widespread critical acclaim. More recently, he has played Al Capone in Boardwalk Empire, and the undercover policeman Corbett in the most recent series of Line of Duty.Stephen, who lives in Leicestershire, is married to fellow actor Hannah Walters, who he met at drama school. DISC ONE: Kasabian - Fire. DISC TWO: Marvin Gaye - Save the Children DISC THREE: Young MC - Know How DISC FOUR: Pink Floyd – Shine on You Crazy Diamond DISC FIVE: Rufus and Chaka Khan – Ain’t Nobody DISC SIX: Maverick Sabre – I Need DISC SEVEN: Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds - Talk Tonight DISC EIGHT: DJ Fresh and High Contrast, featuring Dizzee Rascal – How Love Begins (The Hardcore will Never Die Edit)BOOK: Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach LUXURY: His own pillow CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Ain’t Nobody - Rufus and Chaka Khan Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
17/11/1935m 8s

Lauren Laverne picks some of her favourite episodes

Hear stories & track choices from castaways including Len Goodman, Maya Angelou and Stephen Hawking.
13/11/1937m 51s

Kimberley Motley, lawyer

Kimberley Motley is an American attorney and the first foreign lawyer to practise in Afghanistan.Born in 1975 to an African-American father and a North Korean mother, she grew up in a poor neighbourhood in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where hers was the only mixed-race family - and the only family with two parents. Education was very important to her parents, who sent their four children to private schools and also paid for extra tutoring.After completing degrees in Criminal Justice and Law, Kimberley spent five years working as a Public Defender before taking up the opportunity in 2008 to go to Afghanistan for a year to train local lawyers. Her husband, Claude, stayed in the US to take care of their three children. When her one-year contract in Afghanistan came to an end, she decided to stay and started her own private legal practice. Initially she only took on foreign clients, but once she had familiarised herself with the intricacies of local laws and customs, she accepted her first Afghan client. She has gone on to build a thriving practice, with a 70-30% ratio of paid to pro-bono work. Her practice now extends to other parts of the world including Uganda, Ghana and the UAE and earlier this year she published a book about her working life.DISC ONE: Will Smith - A Nightmare on My Street DISC TWO: Elton John - I Guess That’s Why They Call it the Blues DISC THREE: LL Cool J - I'm Bad DISC FOUR: KT Tunstall - Suddenly I See DISC FIVE: Dizzee Rascal featuring Calvin Harris - Dance Wiv Me DISC SIX: Ed Sheeran - I See Fire DISC SEVEN: The Black Eyed Peas - Pump It DISC EIGHT: Kendrick Lamar - DNA BOOK CHOICE: 1984 by George Orwell LUXURY ITEM: Business card holder with photo of her children CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Pump It by Black Eyed PeasPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
10/11/1951m 5s

Russell T Davies, screenwriter

Russell T Davies is one of the U.K.’s most successful television writers. He spent his teenage years learning his dramatic craft with the West Glamorgan Youth Theatre, and his career in television began in the children’s department at the BBC.His first solo hit TV series was the ground-breaking, sexually frank drama Queer as Folk, first broadcast on Channel 4 in 1999.A lifelong Doctor Who fan, he relaunched the series in 2005 for a new generation of viewers. Such was its success, he found himself working around the clock.More recently, he wrote the highly-acclaimed series A Very English Scandal, starring Hugh Grant as Jeremy Thorpe, and the dystopian drama Years and Years.DISC ONE: Julie Covington, Charlotte Cornwell, Rula Lenska - Sugar Mountain DISC TWO: Hora Staccato (1950 version) performed by Jascha Heifetz and Emanuel Bay DISC THREE: The New Christy Minstrels - Three Wheels on My Wagon - DISC FOUR: Leonard Bernstein's Gloria in excelsis, performed by The Norman Scribner Choir DISC FIVE: Kate Bush - Wuthering Heights DISC SIX: The OT Quartet - Hold That Sucker Down (Builds Like A Skyscraper Mix) DISC SEVEN: Neil Hannon - Song For Ten DISC EIGHT: Electric Light Orchestra - Mr. Blue SkyBOOK CHOICE: Asterix and the Roman Agent by by René Goscinny with illustrations by Albert Uderzo LUXURY ITEM: A black Ball Pentol Pen CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Leonard Bernstein's Gloria in excelsisPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Sarah Taylor
03/11/1946m 7s

Wendell Pierce, actor

Wendell Pierce is an American actor best known for his role as Bunk Moreland in the television series The Wire. Since the series ended in 2008, he has made around 40 film and television appearances, including Treme, Selma and the legal drama Suits, in which he played Robert Zane, the father of Rachel Zane, played by Meghan Markle. His theatre credits range from The Cherry Orchard to Death of a Salesman. Born in 1963, the youngest of three sons, Wendell grew up in the Pontchartrain Park area of New Orleans, which was the first middle-class African-American suburban-style development in the city. He graduated from the prestigious Juilliard School in New York and his career got off to a flying start with a small part opposite Tom Hanks in a film called The Money Pit. He hasn’t been out of work since. In 2005, Hurricane Katrina destroyed Wendell’s childhood home in New Orleans and he was instrumental in rebuilding his parents’ house in Pontchartrain Park. He also built 40 new homes and staged a production of Waiting for Godot on an empty street corner in one of the most devastated districts of the city. He is currently reprising his role as Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman on stage in London. DISC ONE: Jim Henson - Bein' Green (Featuring Kermit The Frog) DISC TWO: Wynton Marsalis - Green Chimneys DISC THREE: Funkadelic - One Nation Under a Groove (Part 1) DISC FOUR: Mahalia Jackson - Take My Hand, Precious Lord DISC FIVE: Joni Mitchell - Both Sides Now DISC SIX: Solomon Burke - Don't Give Up on Me DISC SEVEN: Aaron Copland - Appalachian Spring (Doppio Movimento), performed by New York Philharmonic DISC EIGHT: John Coltrane - A Love Supreme Part I: Acknowledgement BOOK CHOICE: The Omni-americans: Black Experience And American Culture by Albert Murray. LUXURY ITEM: A multi-burner barbecue grill CASTAWAY'S CHOICE: Take My Hand, Precious Lord by Mahalia JacksonPresenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale
27/10/191h 1m

Dame Glenys Stacey, former Chief Inspector of Probation

Dame Glenys Stacey has spent 40 years in public service, including high profile work as a regulator in key areas of national life. She has just stepped down after her five year term as Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Probation during which she criticised the decision to privatise the Probation service calling it “irredeemably flawed”. Glenys was born in Walsall Wood in the West Midlands, where her father was a painter and decorator for the council and her mother worked full time in Union Locks. She left school at 16 and her first job was in an explosives factory. She became a legal executive before deciding to take A levels and then study law at the University of Kent. She was the founding CEO of the Criminal Cases Review Commission, set up by the government in January 1997, after the miscarriages of justice in the cases of the Birmingham Six and the Guildford Four. As Chief Executive of Animal Health, she oversaw the management of the outbreak of foot and mouth in 2007 and then led Ofqual for five years, during the reform of GCSEs and A levels. She was awarded a Damehood in 2016 for her services to education and earlier this year she became a founding Board Member of the Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation, an advisory body established by the government. DISC ONE: Loch Lomond – Sir Harry Lauder DISC TWO: Harry Belafonte - Scarlett Ribbons (For Her Hair) DISC THREE: T.REX –Ride a White Swan DISC FOUR: Peter Gabriel – Solsbury Hill DISC FIVE: Wagner - The Ride of the Valkyries DISC SIX: Second movement of Saint Saen’s Piano concerto number 2 in G minor DISC SEVEN: Bob Marley and the Wailers - I Shot the Sherriff DISC EIGHT: Soave sia Il vento from Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte BOOK CHOICE: Oxford Book of English Short Stories LUXURY ITEM: A selection of seeds CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Solsbury Hill by Peter Gabriel Presenter: Lauren Laverne Producer: Cathy Drysdale Photo: BBC / Amanda Benson
20/10/1939m 45s