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1 hour
First broadcast:
Saturday 11 December 2010

The Reverend Richard Coles with actor Tom Hollander and poet Aoife Mannix, a student protestor from the 1970's and a woman who gathered top secret information at Bletchley Park during the war and was married to a spy. There's an I Was There from the Russian Revolution and Inheritance Tracks from author Jilly Cooper.

  • Studio Guest :: Tom Hollander

    Studio Guest :: Tom Hollander

    Actor Tom Hollander is this week's guest.

    Tom Hollander
  • Married to a Spy :: Rozanne Colchester

    Married to a Spy :: Rozanne Colchester

    Rozanne Colchester worked at Bletchley Park during the war and then married a man from MI6.

    Rozanne Colchester
  • Student Protester :: Ivor Gaber

    Student Protester :: Ivor Gaber

    Ivor Gaber was involved in the student protest at Warwick University in 1970.

    Ivor Gaber


    Kyril Zinovieff lived through the Russian revolution of 1917.



    Author Jilly Cooper chose 'Something Good' from the Sound of Music sung by Christopher Plummer and Julie Andrews and The Pastoral Symphony by Beethoven.

    Jilly Cooper


    Aoife Mannix is an Irish writer and poet based in London.

    Aoife Mannix
  • Winning Words

    Would you like a chance to leave an imprint on the Olympics? What would you say to inspire Olympic athletes to do their best in their chosen event? We want to hear your suggestions for lines of poetry that best capture the spirit of the Olympic ideals.

    Winning Words
  • Winning Words

    When you’re for going for gold, you don’t want to be told
    ‘every little helps’ or it’s ‘because you’re worth it.’
    You need words that inspire, that can set your heart on fire.
    The poetry of motion, the notion that friendship is
    the highest form of courage. The sheer nerve, the verve,
    to transcend our differences. Not some catchy slogan,
    sound bite, something trite, but a metaphor for hope,
    for determination. The dreams of a nation.
    To win equality, share in the reality of an athlete
    looking up at our advice, reading it twice,
    absorbing the knowledge that they have the power
    to bring this message to life.

  • Decoding

    It's hard to know who to trust. If you must train to be a spy,
    sooner or later you'll want to know why you beat the Nazis
    at their own game and yet sometimes it seems oppression
    simply finds a new name. The numbers no longer fill
    the airwaves but now they stream through time and space,
    the digital race. The secrets of torture under water,
    the slaughter of civilians, the millions who live in fear
    of speaking their own mind. The kind of racial hate
    you thought you'd cracked when you backed the Allied cause.
    It gives you pause for doubt when so many go without their freedom
    and governments boycott peace, refuse to release their critics,
    use the power of money as honey to sweeten hypocrisy.
    The bureaucracy of a system that claims we can't afford the future,
    a culture where politicians lie and it's hard to tell the next generation
    why their great grandparents chose to die rather than accept a fascist state.
    Yet perhaps it's not too late to solve the mystery of our history
    when we remember those who wouldn't dream of betraying the promises
    they made but played their part with dignity and grace. The hidden face
    of the code breaker, the silent maker of a hope that even now stands
    for all that is fair and just, in their memory we can still trust.


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  1. Image for Inheritance Tracks

    Inheritance Tracks

    Celebrating the music that special guests cherish and would like to bestow to future generations.

  2. Image for Inheritance Tracks 2008-2011

    Inheritance Tracks 2008-2011

    Celebrating the music that special guests cherish and would like to bestow to future generations.

  3. Image for Saturday Live

    Saturday Live

    Real life but not as you know it. Radio 4's Saturday morning show is full of the stuff that matters,…

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