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Call the Midwife; Peter Lawrence on his missing daughter; pianist Valentina Lisitsa

Claudia Lawrence went missing in 2009 - her father Peter and friend Suzy Cooper talk to Jane Garvey. Plus, Call the Midwife writer Heidi Thomas discusses the hit TV series.

The chef Claudia Lawrence went missing in 2009. Her father Peter and her best friend, Suzy Cooper talk to Jane Garvey. Call The Midwife writer Heidi Thomas discusses healthcare issues raised by the hit TV series. Pianist Valentina Lisitsa has had 46 million hits on You Tube. She plays live. Author Elizabeth Fremantle and historian Gemma Allen explore the life of Katherine Parr. We continue our series hearing from listeners in their 50's facing pension changes.

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45 minutes


  • Claudia Lawrence – Four years on

    The continued search for the 35 year old chef who went missing on 18th March 2009

    Duration: 09:16

  • Pension Changes and Women

    The differing experiences of women in their 50s affected by state pension changes.

    Duration: 10:51

  • Valentina Lisitsa

    The pianist Valentina is one of the most watched classical musicians on the Web.

    Duration: 06:03

  • Call the Midwife

    Heidi Thomas, screenwriter and Executive Producer, about why it’s become a prime-time hit.

    Duration: 11:01

  • Katherine Parr

    Queen's Gambit, a new novel by Elizabeth Fremantle about Katherine Parr.

    Duration: 09:14

Claudia Lawrence – Four years on

Claudia Lawrence – Four years on

Where is Claudia Lawrence? The 35 year old chef was last seen on CCTV footage as she walked home from work on the afternoon of 18th March 2009. She made phone calls and sent texts that evening but failed to turn up for her shift in the kitchens at the University of York the following morning. Four years on, after extensive searching by the police and her family, Claudia’s disappearance is still a mystery.  Her father, Peter Lawrence and her best friend, Suzy Cooper tell Jane about their continuing search for the truth and how this search has changed their lives.


Find Claudia


Missing People


Pension Changes and Women

Back in January we looked at the recent government proposals to move toward a flat-rate state pension and the benefits and drawbacks of those changes for women. Jenni spoke to the Pensions Minister, Steve Webb and Dame Anne Begg MP, Chair of the Work and Pensions Committee, who continues to raise her concerns about the estimated 430,000 women who could lose out under these alterations.   People have been submitting evidence to the Select Committee. The recommendations are expected to come out at the end of March – before Easter. This week on Woman’s Hour we’ll be hearing differing experiences of how women in their 50s affected by state pension changes are coping with having to wait up to two years extra to claim their pension.  Jane talks to Janet Waters about her experience.

Valentina Lisitsa

Valentina Lisitsa

Valentina Lisitsa started playing the piano at the age of three. She gained a place at the Lysenko Music School for Gifted Children, went on to study at the Kiev Conservatory and has won major piano competitions. However, despite this early success, it wasn’t until she discovered social media that she singlehandedly launched her solo career. Now with more than 50 million views on her YouTube account she is one of the most watched classical musicians on the Web. Valentina performs live in the studio.


Rachmaninov: The Piano Concertos, Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini is out on 11th March. 

Call the Midwife

For over 11 million viewers, Call the Midwife, has been the must-see TV highlight of the week.  The first episode alone smashed viewing figures for a new drama since ratings began. It brought to life every detail of East London life and the unsung heroes – the midwives – who delivered more than babies to their community. Jane talks to Heidi Thomas,  the screenwriter and Executive Producer, about why it’s become such a prime-time hit.

The Life and Times of Call the Midwife, the official companion to series one and two is published by Collins.


Katherine Parr

Katherine Parr

Katherine Parr is best known for having survived marriage to Henry VIII. Apart from this one remarkable achievement, she is usually depicted as a dull Tudor wife - dutiful, respectable, the perfect nursemaid for her ailing husband. Historian Dr Gemma Allen and fiction writer Elizabeth Fremantle, author of Queen’s Gambit, her new novel about Katherine Parr, reveal a completely different woman –  dynamic, deeply intelligent, someone able to negotiate the danger of Henry’s Tudor court with skill and discretion. They join Jane in the studio.  

Queen's Gambit by Elizabeth Fremantle is published by Penguin.



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