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Gillian Reynolds

Kirsty Young interviews radio critic Gillian Reynolds.

Gillian Reynolds spent 42 years as the radio critic of the Daily Telegraph before she was headhunted by the Sunday Times at the age of 82. Born into a working class family in Liverpool, her mother ran a market stall and her father was a seaman, but also a gambler. Her mother was determined to ensure that Gillian had a good education, and she was the first in her family to go to a grammar school. She went on to study English at Oxford.

She took up an internship in America, where she met her husband, and they returned to Liverpool when she became pregnant with the first of her three sons. She first worked as a radio critic for the Guardian in 1967. She became the first female controller of a commercial radio station when she joined Radio City, Liverpool, in 1974. She moved to London in 1975 when she left her troubled marriage, and secured the job of radio critic for the Telegraph, as well as working as a journalist in television and radio, at one point even co-presenting the Today programme.

She chaired the Sony Radio Awards for four years, the only woman to have done so, and the Radio Academy Festival for a decade. She lives alone, but with around two dozen radios, in Notting Hill.

Presenter: Kirsty Young
Producer: Cathy Drysdale.

Available now

41 minutes

Last on

Fri 8 Jun 2018 09:00

Music Played

  • Earth, Wind & Fire


    • The Best Of Earth, Wind And Fire Volume 1.
    • Sony Music Entertainment UK Ltd.
    • 7.
  • Queen’s Hall Light Orchestra & Charles Williams

    Coronation Scot (Paul Temple)

    • You Must Remember This... Classic Themes From TV And Radio.
    • Conifer.
    • 7.
  • Miles Davis


    • Birth of the Cool.
    • Capitol Jazz.
    • 7.
  • Ray Charles

    What'd I Say Parts I And II

    • Ray Charles: Ultimate Hits Collection.
    • Rhino Records.
    • 10.
  • Dmitry Shostakovich

    Violin Concerto No. 1 in A Minor, Op. 77: IV. Burlesque: Allegro con brio

    Performer: Lydia Mordkovitch. Conductor: Neeme Järvi. Orchestra: Royal Scottish National Orchestra.
    • Shostakovich: Violin Concertos Nos. 1 and 2.
    • Chandos.
    • 4.
  • Anne Sofie von Otter, Sir John Eliot Gardiner & North German Radio Symphony Orchestra

    Speak Low

    • Speak Low.
    • Decca.
    • 21.
  • Richard Burton

    Under Milk Wood

    • Under Milk Wood.
    • Speaking Volumes.
    • 1.

    • Ludwig van Beethoven

      Beethoven's Piano Concerto No 1, 3rd movement

      Performer: Stephen Hough. Conductor: Vasily Petrinko. Orchestra: Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.
      • Radio 3 In Concert - Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool (broadcast 2nd April 2018).

      Hogarth, A Life and a World by Jenny Uglow


    Endless supply of blended Scotch


Role Contributor
Presenter Kirsty Young
Interviewed Guest Gillian Reynolds
Producer Cathy Drysdale


  • Sun 3 Jun 2018 11:15
  • Fri 8 Jun 2018 09:00

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