Winamp Logo
Whistledown Cover
Whistledown Profile


English, Arts, 1 season, 59 episodes, 6 hours, 22 minutes
One of the UK's leading radio producers, and Indie of the Year for 2012. Here are some of our prime cuts, archive blasts, slip-ups, bloopers and stop-in-your-tracks listener moments. We hope you enjoy them.
Episode Artwork

I'm officially a "Doctor of Lobsters"

"The world is your lobster," says Carly Daniels, Britain's leading expert on the snap-happy crustacean.  Photo: Johnny Fenn.
3/18/20217 minutes, 3 seconds
Episode Artwork

Fasten Your Seatbelts .. it's P.J.Harvey

P.J.Harvey has recorded two new songs, together with the music for a new stage version of the classic movie All About Eve. John Wilson has been granted special back stage access for "Behind the Scenes" - and it's a Whistledown production for BBC Radio 4\. Tx 4pm on Monday 11th Feb 2019.
2/4/20195 minutes, 2 seconds
Episode Artwork

Barry from Watford on Steve Wright

Barry’s Lunch Club is the new radio comedy show from Whistledown. Staring Alex Lowe as the 82 year old Barry from Watford, it is a talking shop for the retired people of Britain. Here, Barry is on Radio 2’s Steve Wright in the afternoon talking about holidays, his wife Margaret and the new show.
4/28/20164 minutes, 52 seconds
Episode Artwork

An inspirational and brilliant communicator

We’re saddened hear of the death of historian and biographer Lisa Jardine. Here she is in one of her last interviews, talking about the scientist Leo Szilard, a friend of her father’s for a Whistledown documentary on the origins of the H-Bomb. The programme, "HG and the H Bomb" was presented by Samira Ahmed and broadcast on Radio 3 earlier this year.
10/26/20153 minutes, 44 seconds
Episode Artwork

The secrets of Burgess and Maclean

As Government papers are released, Radio 4's Cold War Confidential, produced by Whistledown, reveals how the British spy network failed to spot the traitors in their midst.
10/23/20154 minutes, 48 seconds
Episode Artwork

When Fats met Al

In 1927 - or thereabouts, a car pulled up outside a hotel in central Chicago. The pianist Fats Waller was bundled in the back ... or was he? Kurt Elling investigates one of the strangest footnotes in jazz in this extract from the forthcoming Radio 2 documentary. #FatsWaller #AlCapone #Mob #chicago #KurtElling #Radio2
5/26/20153 minutes, 24 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Reunion: Peter Brook's A Midsummer Night's Dream

Sue MacGregor reunites cast and creatives to recall how director Peter Brook's revolutionary production of A Midsummer Night's Dream, set inside a brilliantly-lit white box, changed theatre and Shakespeare forever. Sue MacGregor is joined by Peter Brook, designer Sally Jacobs and actors Sir Ben Kingsley (Demetrius), Sara Kestelman (Titania/Hippolyta), Frances de la Tour (Helena) and Barry Stanton (Snug). (An extract from Radio 4's 'The Reunion: Peter Brook's A Midsummer Night's Dream'. Originally broadcast on 08/05/15)
5/15/20157 minutes, 32 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Reunion: Far East Prisoners of War

The fall of Singapore to the Japanese in 1942 led to the surrender of 67,000 British servicemen, the single largest capitulation in British military history. While many were sent to forced labour projects such as the Thailand-Burma railway, many more were sent on "hell ships" across South-East Asia. In this short extract, Bob Morrell remembers his "coffin duty" on the island of Ambon. (This is an extract from Radio 4's 'The Reunion: Far East Prisoners of War', originally broadcast on 01/05/15.)
5/15/20152 minutes, 17 seconds
Episode Artwork

Women in Blue

Former senior police detective Jackie Malton - the inspiration for Detective Chief Inspector Jane Tennison in the TV series Prime Suspect – talks to retired and serving officers to explore whether the laddish canteen-culture and sexist attitudes among male police officers has really changed since the 70s and 80s, and whether the force has genuinely created a safe and equal environment for men and women to work in. (An extract from 'Women in Blue', originally broadcast 20/04/15. This extract contains strong language.)
5/15/20158 minutes, 9 seconds
Episode Artwork

Radio Today interview with David Prest

Radio Today's Trevor Dann speaks to managing director of Whistledown, David Prest about the new RIGTrain scheme which aims to offer the skills required to expand the independent radio production sector, and to support the freelancers working in the industry.
3/13/20156 minutes, 16 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Reunion - Barings Bank Collapse

It's 20 years since a precocious trader brought Britain's oldest merchant bank to its knees. In this edition of The Reunion, Sue MacGregor brought together Nick Leeson and his former boss Peter Norris for the first time since the bank's spectacular demise in 1995. (An extract from 'The Reunion', first broadcast on 12/08/11)
2/27/201510 minutes, 3 seconds
Episode Artwork

John Waite's 'Face The Facts'

Radio 4's long-running programme 'Face The Facts' is coming to an end. Its presenter John Waite, the doyenne of dogged investigative journalism, was never afraid to confront less than salubrious characters face-to-face, an attitude that placed him in a particularly memorable radio encounter with a Mr Sage... (An extract from Radio 4's 'Feedback', aired on 27/02/15)
2/27/20156 minutes, 12 seconds
Episode Artwork

Malcolm X and the 'American Nightmare'

In post-Ferguson USA and on the 50th anniversary of his assassination, four unique voices from America consider the legacy of Malcolm X amidst the protests referred to as a “new Civil Rights Movement”. With Malcom X’s name and quotes used on placards and in chants, this programme explores the newly framed race problem in the States. (An extract from ‘Malcom X and the ‘American Nightmare’’, originally broadcast on Radio 4, 16/02/15)
2/20/20154 minutes, 25 seconds
Episode Artwork

A History of Britain in Numbers: Debt

UK debt currently stands at over one trillion pounds. But while that sum may seem vast beyond comprehension, Andrew Dilnot, chair of the UK Statistics Authority, uses the historical numbers behind UK debt to suggest that we may not be in such a bad state after all. (An extract from BBC Radio 4's 'A History of Britain in Numbers: Debt', 24/02/15)
2/20/20154 minutes, 26 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Nun Who Nurtured Reggae

“She was sweet man…” She’s credited with nurturing the talents of many of the key players in Jamaican Reggae when the industry took off in the 1960′s. Jonathan Charles tells the story of Sister Mary Ignatius Davies in this extract from The Nun Who Nurtured Reggae.
2/13/20157 minutes, 51 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Real Life Fortitude ..

The Arctic town of Longyearbyen in the remote Svalbard archipelago is the basis for the TV series “Fortitude”. One of the town’s best loved characters is Kazem Ariaiwand, owner of the Red Polar bear, the most northerly kebab van in the world. In 2010, Whistledown’s Nick Maes tracked him down...
2/6/20156 minutes, 18 seconds
Episode Artwork

Alchemical Manchester

From politics to music, religion to transport, the defiant UK city of Manchester has always been a cutting edge driving force for change in the country's history. Author Jeanette Winterson ("Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit") takes us on a personal tour around the history of her home town, in this episode (third in a series of five) focusing on radical politics from the 1800's.
1/15/20153 minutes, 36 seconds
Episode Artwork

"Look out Gromit!"

National treasures Wallace and Gromit are the multi-Oscar, multi-BAFTA winning plasticine pair who swept to fame in the the 1980's, putting Bristol's Aardman animation company on the comedy world map. Sue MacGregor brings the creative geniuses behind this quintessentially British comedy duo together to talk all things Wensleydale, from Wigan to Hollywood's Dreamworks, in this Christmas edition of The Reunion.
1/15/20155 minutes, 19 seconds
Episode Artwork

Mipster Sisters

Mipsterz, or Muslim hipsters, are confronting cultural stereotypes and society expectations head on - in a hijab. How do they combine their glowing grades, Hijabi swagger and high aspirations with their beliefs and cultural expectations? #mipstersisters
1/15/20155 minutes, 40 seconds
Episode Artwork

Deadringers "does" The Reunion

It had to happen .. the team from Radio 4's Deadringers have finally done their take on The Reunion, as Sue MacGregor re-unites the Apostles!
9/1/20142 minutes, 10 seconds
Episode Artwork

"I was kind of shy .. we all were a bit"

Pulp's keyboard player Candida Doyle confesses all - erect nipples, performance anxiety, and being a woman at the centre of Britpop's best-loved band. Produced by Emma Jarvis.
6/20/20147 minutes, 20 seconds
Episode Artwork

Robert Capa on D-Day

The recent D-Day anniversary reminds us of the story of how Robert Capa took the image which defined the day, recalled here in this 2013 Radio 3 essay by Hilary Roberts of the Imperial War Museum, produced by Brian McCluskey for Whistledown.
6/12/201413 minutes, 35 seconds
Episode Artwork

David and the Gorillas

Sir David Attenborough and his cameraman Martin Saunders recall their encounter with the gorillas of Rwanda while filming the 1979 BBC TV series Life on Earth. As recalled in The Reunion on BBC Radio 4.
4/23/20146 minutes, 54 seconds
Episode Artwork

"It's like Brecht on the run"

Mehmet Ergen is best known to UK theatre audiences as Artistic Director of London's Arcola Theatre, but his pioneering work in Hackney is only half the story. We follow him to Istanbul, post Gezi Park and post Arab Spring, caught between the Syrian conflict and EU aspirations; an emerging economy with freedom of speech still in jeopardy. Kirsty McQuire produces for Whistledown. The programme aired on Radio 4 on April 3rd 2013.
4/17/20149 minutes
Episode Artwork

Andie MacDowell and her Four Weddings moment

Twenty years on, Andie MacDowell remembers the making of “Four Weddings and a Funeral” for Radio 4’s The Reunion. In this extended extract from the programme, she talks about Richard Curtis’ script, her co-star Hugh Grant, and that last cheesy scene in the rain.
4/15/20145 minutes, 5 seconds
Episode Artwork

All things transient are but a parable....

In this extract from BBC Radio 4's Something Understood, Samira Ahmed explores the role of transience in our lives. Anthony Denselow is the producer for Whistledown.
4/10/20147 minutes, 26 seconds
Episode Artwork

Looking back: The Miners Strike

Ex-miners meet a former police officer and a Government Minister in this sparky edition of Radio 4's The Reunion, produced by Jerome Lyte for Whistledown.
4/10/20144 minutes, 6 seconds
Episode Artwork

Everyone, even the young soldier, listens to Johnny Cash

Whistledown producer Deborah Dudgeon talks to Irish broadcaster Sean Moncrieff about the making of her programme "My War, My Playlist".
2/25/20148 minutes, 25 seconds
Episode Artwork

Playlists at War

The ipod is the No 1 bit of kit to ease the boredom in Afghanistan. Coincidentally it was launched by Apple in the same month as the start of the war in 2001. Whistledown's Deborah Dudgeon has made a really insightful programme for the BBC World Service called "My War, My Playlist". She's spoken to those who have served about the music that keeps them going on their tours of duty. Jo Fidgen is the narrator.
2/21/20148 minutes, 20 seconds
Episode Artwork

Iggy Pop meets William Burroughs

Never mind the anatomy of a car crash.. Iggy Pop introduces BBC Radio 4 listeners to his hero William Burroughs in this Whistledown special feature. Colin McNulty produced this one, which meant spending time in Mr Pop's holiday cottage in Miami. The long version is on the Radio 4 website for a limited period.
2/18/201411 minutes, 25 seconds
Episode Artwork

Cash in a Bag at Sochi '14

Robin Lustig investigates the claims of corruption and kickbacks that have dogged Sochi's Winter Olympic journey. Hear more in "The Road to Sochi" on Radio 4 this Friday at 11am, or on BBC World Service on Saturday.
1/29/20146 minutes, 11 seconds
Episode Artwork

Pete Seeger talks to Studs Terkel

A lovely interview with Pete Seeger who will be much missed. This taken from the Radio 4 series "Old Stubborn Guts", presented by Studs Terkel and produced by David Prest in 1998.
1/28/20147 minutes, 17 seconds
Episode Artwork

When Gorbachev met Thatcher

An extract from Radio 4's UK Confidential, produced by Whistledown, in which Margaret Thatcher meets Mikhail Gorbachev for the very first time. The 1984 papers reveal what really went on. Presenter Martha Kearney, Producer Deborah Dudgeon. Taking part: Lords Kinnock, Lawson and Armstrong. Originally broadcast 03.01.14
1/7/201410 minutes, 21 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Fast Show v The Reunion

A fast show taster of Radio 4's The Reunion. We gather Paul Whitehouse, Charlie Higson, John Thomson, Arabella Weir and Simon Day. Catch the complete programme on Christmas Day at 10pm.
12/20/20136 minutes, 5 seconds
Episode Artwork

How the Phonograph Helped win the Great War

Radio historian and lecturer Tim Crook reveals some of the gems from his collection of WW1 propaganda phonograph cylinders.
12/12/20133 minutes, 19 seconds
Episode Artwork

A Day of Days

Whistledown's Patrick Sykes has produced this lovely sound portrait of this year's Durham Miner's Gala.
11/27/201314 minutes, 46 seconds
Episode Artwork

Britain in Stats

Andrew Dilnot's 10 part Whistledown series looks at The History of Britain in Numbers. Here's a preview on The Today programme.
11/18/20136 minutes, 13 seconds
Episode Artwork

Remembering John Cole

Sad to hear about the death of former BBC Political Editor John Cole. Here's one of his sterling performances, holding his own with Tony Benn and Shirley Williams in an episode of The Reunion recalling Harold Wilson's brave decision to hold a European referendum in 1975.
11/8/20136 minutes, 12 seconds
Episode Artwork

Human v. Computer Poetry Slam

Reckon you can tell when a poem has been computer-generated? Have a go… (Answer in Radio 4's Something Understood on Radio 4, Nov 10th).
11/7/20131 minute, 2 seconds
Episode Artwork

Happy Birthday Hank Marvin!

It's Hank Marvin's birthday. So here from the Whistledown Archives is a gem of an interview with a 2013 re-edit and re-mix. Hank talks about his love for the Fender Stratocaster that became his trademark with The Shadows. Bend that Tremelo arm Hank.
10/29/20136 minutes, 31 seconds
Episode Artwork

"You Rang M'Lady?"

The wonderful David Graham - the voice of Parker from Thunderbirds dropped into the Whistledown studios a few days ago. We asked him about the time Thunderbirds creator Gerry Anderson took him for lunch....
9/12/20133 minutes, 6 seconds
Episode Artwork

Radio Jersey on The Reunion

Series Producer David Prest talks to Chris Stone of Radio Jersey about recording The Reunion on the German occupation of the island during World War II.
9/11/20136 minutes, 41 seconds
Episode Artwork

Handcuffed to Lee Harvey Oswald

Former Dallas homicide detective James Leavelle recalls the shocking moment when Lee Harvey Oswald was shot by Jack Ruby, just two days after the assassination of JFK in November 1963. James, now 93, was the man in the white hat handcuffed to Oswald as he was taken to the County Jail. He's amongst the people taking part in the special 100th edition of The Reunion recorded in Dallas. BBC Radio 4, Sunday September 1st.
6/26/20136 minutes, 22 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Best Bits of Radio 4's Feedback

Roger Bolton and some of the best bits of Feedback from the recent past. A new series starts on June 14th.
6/1/201313 minutes, 53 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Reunion

It's very nice to be quoted: A couple of recent mentions for The Reunion. Stephen Woolley on Loose Ends talking about being inspired by hearing the girl strikers from Dagenham, and Naomi Alderman on our recent Hutton gathering.
6/1/20132 minutes, 36 seconds
Episode Artwork

The Reunion - The Hutton row revisited

Ten years on, Greg Dyke and Andrew Gilligan of the BBC lock horns with Defence Minister Geoff Hoon and No 10 spokesman Tom Kelly over the Government's 2003 decision to go to war with Iraq. It's an explosive edition of Radio 4's The Reunion.
5/3/20132 minutes, 42 seconds
Episode Artwork

Kevin Ayres

And now - something from our hippy archives. Here's Kevin Ayres of Soft Machine talking about living in Deya, Majorca in a programme for Radio 4 in 1992. Sad to hear that Kevin died this week. Simon Parkes, the interviewer, is alive and well. The producer was David Prest
2/22/20132 minutes, 53 seconds
Episode Artwork

Michael Winner - at a cinema near you!

The legendary film director and bon viveur Michael Winner was a regular contributor to many Whistledown programmes over the years. There've been plenty of tributes in recent days - but here he is reminiscing about his love of film trailers in a 2009 programme for Radio 4 called, "Never Before in the History of Motion Pictures". Patrick Humphries is the presenter, and Katrina Fallon the producer.
1/28/20133 minutes, 32 seconds
Episode Artwork

Lunar Eavesdropping

Who knew that talking into space could be such fun? A lovely extract from Rose de Larrabeiti's stunning radio piece "Space Ham" a Between the Ears feature for BBC Radio 3. Sound Design by Caroline Devine.
1/28/20138 minutes, 5 seconds
Episode Artwork

CMJ and Tony Greig on The Reunion

The world of cricket has lost two of its most respected figures in the last week. Commentator Christopher Martin-Jenkins and the former England captain Tony Greig. Here they are in 2009 on Radio 4's The Reunion recalling the impact of Aussie media tycoon Kerry Packer on the game in the 1970's.
1/7/20137 minutes
Episode Artwork

Ravi Shankar 1920-2012

A few years ago - we made an 80th birthday tribute to Ravi Shankar for Radio 4. Terence Stamp was the presenter. Here's a short extract.
12/12/20129 minutes, 57 seconds
Episode Artwork

Barry Humphries on Elisabeth Murdoch

Dame Elisabeth - head of the Murdoch clan died this week at the ripe old age of 103. We couldn't resist digging this one out of our archives. Here's Barry Humphries recalling meeting her a few years ago. Colin McNulty is the producer.
12/9/20122 minutes, 6 seconds
Episode Artwork

GI John

John Lucic served in Britain during World War II, and met his wife Peggy here. He was one of the wonderful contributors to our BBC Radio 4 series G.I. Britain. Recorded earlier this year in Cleveland, here's the full interview he did for us with Colin McNulty ..
11/16/20129 minutes, 58 seconds
Episode Artwork

Here is the Chicken Forecast ...

A Radio 4 Feedback listener "Dinah Shore" sent us this .. and the adorable Dilly Barlow did the honours. Enjoy.
10/12/20122 minutes, 15 seconds
Episode Artwork

Travel writer Adele Evans on Renoir's Champagne trail

A great friend of Whistledown, the travel writer Adele Evans passed away last week. Here is a piece she recorded for us in 2003 about Renoir's connections to the Champagne region of France.
10/2/20124 minutes, 23 seconds
Episode Artwork

Sue MacGregor talks to Wogan about life, and Radio 4's "The Reunion"

BBC Radio 4 The Reunion Sue MacGregor Terry Wogan
9/17/20127 minutes, 16 seconds
Episode Artwork

David Cameron loves Morrissey

As Johnny Marr promises to reform The Smiths if Cameron stands down - here's one from the Whistledown Archives which proves how much DC really loves Morrissey. It was recorded for a documentary in 2007 - when Cameron was still dreaming of No10 - but never made it into the final programme. We love his suggestion for the Smiths lyric that will sit on his desk - anyone know if it's there? Contact Whistledown for re-broadcast rights. #coalition #davidcameron #morrissey
4/27/20126 minutes, 4 seconds
Episode Artwork

Davy Jones meets John Waite

In the late 60's, radio reporter John Waite was hitch-hiking around California. He was spotted by a fellow Brit in a convertible who picked him up and gave him a ride. 40 years on in 2009, they met again. RIP Davy Jones #DavyJones #JohnWaite #TheMonkees
3/5/20124 minutes, 57 seconds
Episode Artwork

Dr John and Sue MacGregor

Blues legend Dr John talks movingly to Sue MacGregor about Hurricane Katrina for The Reunion. A Prime Cut from Whistledown Productions. #SueMacgregor #TheReunion #DrJohn #HurricaneKatrina
2/10/201219 minutes, 59 seconds