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Last Word
Listen to the latest editionFriday   16:00-16:30
Sunday 20:30-21:00 (rpt)

Radio 4's weekly obituaries programme
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This week
Friday 8th December 2006
(rpt) Sunday 10th December
Matthew Bannister
Matthew Bannister tells the life stories of people who have died recently. This week: Peter Roberts, Ed Bradley, Edward Grismond Beaumont Davies-Scourfield, Lionel Bryer and Mario Merola.
Peter Roberts
Founder and director of Compassion in World Farming (CIWF) who has died aged 82.

In the 1950s, Peter Roberts was a dairy farmer from Hampshire but he became so concerned about the growth in factory farming that he began to write letters to the newspapers complaining about it. Having failed to persuade existing animal charities to take up his campaign he decided to start his own organisation – the Compassion in World Farming. The campaign has grown to have thirty thousand members and representatives in 11 countries.

Matthew Bannister talks to the current Chief Executive of ‘Compassion in World Farming’, Phillip Lymbery and Peter Robert’s daughter Helen Engelan.

Peter Roberts was born on June 7th 1924. He died November 15th 2006.

Ed Bradley
Television journalist who has died aged 65.

American viewers voted Ed Bradley one of television’s most trusted reporters. During more than 25 years on the CBS show “60 Minutes”, Bradley became a household name in the States. He won countless awards for films which ranged from revealing profiles of show business stars to investigations of corporate corruption.

Matthew Bannister talks to former BBC correspondent, Martin Bell, who met Ed Bradley covering the Vietnam war and Ed Bradley’s producer at CBS, Ruth Streeter.

Edward Rudolph Bradley was born June 22nd 1941. He died November 9th 2006.
Brigadier Gris Davies-Scourfield
Colditz prisoner who engineered many escape attempts who has died aged 88.

Edward Grismond Beaumont Davies-Scourfield was educated at Winchester and Sandhurst. He joined the 60th Rifles in 1938 and was awarded the Military Cross for his courage when he attempted to secure the French port of Calais in 1940. He spent the rest of the war trying to escape from German prisoner of war camps including Colditz.

Last Word hears the story of his escape from Colditz in his own words and from his memoires ‘In Presence of My Foes’ (Pen and Sword Books) read by Nicholas Rowe.

Brigadier Gris Davies-Scourfield was born on August 8th 1918. He died on November 20th 2006.
Lionel Bryer
Dentist and founder of the International Youth Foundation who has died aged 78.

Lionel Bryer was born in South Africa, he was a Rhodes scholar at Oxford in the 1950s and went on to set up a fashionable dental practice in Chelsea. He was also a music lover and a passionate enthusiast for fostering international co-operation amongst young people and started the International Festival of Youth orchestras, attracting thousands of young musicians.

He and his wife Joy also started the European Union Youth Orchestra and persuaded distinguished international conductors to act as musical directors. The current incumbent is Vladimir Ashkenazy. More than 90 per cent of the EUYO players go on to become professional musicians.

Matthew Bannister talks to his widow Joy Bryer who continues to be secretary general of the European Union Youth Orchestra.
Lionel Bryer was born June 14 th 1928. He died November 3rd 2006.
Mario Merola
Italian singer & entertainer who has died aged 72.

Mario Merola started life as a longshoreman in his native port of Naples, singing to entertain his fellow workers and went on to become the master of the popular Italian melodrama with music. He created stage shows, performed concerts and appeared in a string of successful movies.

Merola had a large and passionate following across Italy and in expatriate communities around the world. On news of his death the Italian language newspaper in New York came out with the front page edged in black and there were hysterical scenes in Naples as thousands of weeping fans gathered to watch his funeral procession pass.
Mario Merola was born April 6th 1934.  He died November 12th 2006.
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