Podcast Library

Our podcast series captures the thoughts, feelings, and experiences of Londoners directly or indirectly affected by coronavirus. We ask them about the approaches they are taking to stay mentally well and share with you top tips on what you can do to stay mentally healthy.

Published 8 July 2020

Episode 24

Sex and relationships during and after the pandemic: Amber Newman-Clark, Education & Wellbeing Specialist, Brook

Navigating a relationship was difficult enough before but lockdown has added another level of complexity. Amber Newman-Clark from Brook, a nationwide charity supporting young people with sexual health and wellbeing advice, talks about what has changed and offers some useful tips. No doubt helpful for her own blossoming relationship with her... pot plants.


Published 3 July 2020

Episode 23

Supporting those with Eating Disorders: Andrew Radford, CEO, and Caroline Price, Director of Services, Beat

Lockdown is helpful for infection control but not for eating disorders – they thrive in isolation. Andrew Radford and Caroline Price of Beat, the UK’s eating disorders charity, share how a combination of agility and innovation helped them respond to the still increasing demand for support, whilst funding was less certain.

Episode 22

Supporting the whole family through the pandemic: Paula Ludley, co-founder, Nine Day Week

The Beatles sang ‘Eight days a week is not enough to show I care’ and it's never been more true. Paula Ludley co-founded Nine Day Week to support those who were working and caring for their children, their elderly parents, and even their pets. The demands are great but peer support from friends and family makes it possible, as does the longing to sit and talk again with those shielded – with a good cup of tea.


Published 12 June 2020

Episode 21

A public health response to a pandemic: Professor Kevin Fenton, Regional Director for Public Health in London, Public Health England

In this podcast, Professor Kevin Fenton unpacks all of the knowledge and thinking behind the public health response to the COVID-19, and shares how looking after your health is the best way to protect yourself in the future. Who knew you could sail a ship at the same time as building it?


Published 9 June 2020

Episode 20

Shout – the crisis text line: Victoria Hornby, CEO, Mental Health Innovations

It takes courage to reach for support when you are struggling, perhaps in crisis. Victoria Hornby shares how Shout: Crisis Text Line have used innovation and technology to make it as easy as we can to support those that have had the courage to reach out by texting 85258. And that number is really, very interesting…

Episode 19

The future of work: Nicola Millard, Principal Innovation Partner, BT

During the pandemic we might have thought that working from home was temporary, but for some it is now a permanent arrangement. Nicola Millard shares fantastic insights from almost 30 years with British Telecom on how to do it well. And it turns out, it’s a bit like drinking at a wedding…

Episode 18

Dealing with stress and trauma: Professor Neil Greenberg, academic, occupational & forensic psychiatrist, founder & director of March on Stress; Professor with King's College, London

As lockdown eases, unease may take its place. Professor Neil Greenberg shares insights on how we now respond to the stress, even traumas, that many have lived with in past months, not least those on the frontline, and how we can learn much from how the military manage transitions. Done well, there is the prospect of hope, and growth.


Published 14 May 2020

Episode 17

Supporting students through coronavirus: Mhairi Underwood, Head of Community, The Student Room

Between the ages of 14- 25 years, most young people invest more of themselves in their education than anything else. What happens when the reward for that suddenly becomes uncertain, unknown? The impact of coronavirus on students has been significant as a huge part of their culture and structure suddenly disappeared when education settings mostly shut their doors. Mhairi Underwood shares how The Student Room, the UK’s largest online student community, is supporting children and young people to connect and support each other through uncertainty, with a focus on maintaining hope that things will get better.



Published 6 May 2020

Episode 16

Helping parents and their children thrive in our digital present and in our digital future: Professor Sonia Livingstone OBE

Many families are currently juggling competing demands during the coronavirus pandemic, from home schooling to money concerns. They are also grappling with the challenges their children face in the digital world as we live through changes not seen since the industrial revolution. World expert on digital parenting, Sonia Livingstone, provides insights and advice about parenting in the digital present and future. Cellos optional.

Episode 15

Mental health in online communities: Darren Gough, Expert in Community Management and founder of Island23

People often use online communities to seek support and advice to manage their mental health. Here, Darren Gough, provides insights into the world of online communities and how important it is to look after those who run them – the community managers who may now be frontline workers.

Episode 14

The coronavirus pandemic for those with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) can be particularly challenging: Tracey Taylor, Cognitive Behaviour Therapist at the Centre for Anxiety Disorders and Trauma, SLaM.

For those with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), the coronavirus pandemic can be particularly challenging but the psychological impact goes further. Our worries during the pandemic can drive us to ‘safety behaviours’ that we might struggle to give up when they are no longer needed. Some may struggle later to leave lockdown psychologically. Clinical Lead for the National OCD Service, Tracey Taylor, shares insights and advice for those trying to overcome OCD at this time and her recommendations on how to live well after lockdown.

Published 4 May 2020

Episode 13

Supporting a healthy screen/life balance during the pandemic: Tanya Goodin, Digital Wellbeing Expert

As the worlds of work, education and our social lives become screen-based, now more than ever it is time to master the screen/life balance. Tanya Goodin provides tips about balancing screen time with other activities and how establishing boundaries between work and play, for us all, is key to wellness.

Published 20 Apr 2020

Episode 12

Online communities for support: Annie Mullins OBE, Independent Online Safety Expert

In isolation, many will turn to online communities for support and information, and get much in return. But if you are uncertain, what can help you get the best from online spaces without too many risks? Online safety expert Annie Mullins shares what to check for, and how to start out in any online community.

Episode 11

Why a micropause can help your mental health today: Janet Wingrove, Mindfulness Trainer and Consultant Psychologist, SLaM

When overwhelmed and stressed, it can feel like there is nothing that can help you. Janet Wingrove shares how even a small pause, some breathing space, can start the journey to feeling calmer and more resilient, and reconnect you with those values that help you to keep going.

Episode 10

How the football world can help during the coronavirus pandemic: Ivor Heller, AFC Wimbledon

In better times, Bill Shankly said “Some people think football is a matter of life and death. I assure you, it's much more serious than that.” So how does a football club balance life, death and football, when in lockdown? Ivor Heller shares, and with feeling.

Episode 9

Education in the time of coronavirus: Emma Murray - Headteacher

What do you do as a Headteacher when the support your school gives to some vulnerable families can no longer be offered in the same way? Emma Murray shares how leadership skills during the time of lockdown helped her to hold on to her values and priorities, way beyond education.

Episode 8

Online safety for young people during lockdown: Catherine McAllister, Head of Editorial Standards at BBC Children’s Department

As schools close and education is delivered using technology to young people in their homes, many are online more than ever. Catherine McAllister shares her insights into how children and teenagers can stay safe online and how the BBC Own It App and resources can support them.


Published 9 Apr 2020

Episode 7

Experience of coronavirus: Dr Tom Coffey, GP & Mayor of London Health Advisor

Dr Tom Coffey OBE, GP and Senior Advisor to the Mayor of London, talks about how much he has changed his ways of working in recent weeks, more than during the rest of his career, and in many ways for the better.

Episode 6

Coping with loss of work: Jack Apperley

Imagine that point in life, when you get to live independently, start to earn your own money, and in a flash it all disappears. Musician Jack Apperley describes how his world was turned upside down, and yet by holding on to his values, he has hope for the future.

Episode 5

Benefits of healthy sleep patterns: Michael Farquhar, Consultant in Paediatric Sleep Medicine, Guy's & St Thomas' NHS Trust

When stressed, one of the things that has been shown to help the most, is a good night’s sleep. Michael Farquhar, an expert in sleep medicine, shares the latest insights on what helps to improve the length and quality of sleep.


Published 3 Apr 2020

Episode 4

The challenges of a dispersed workforce: Kathryn Davies, Head of Learning, Procter & Gamble

As Londoners were suddenly facing the challenges of working from home, many also lost the social and other rewards that come with working together in an organisation. Kathryn Davies shares what has helped a dispersed global workforce come together, and how they maintain their wellbeing.

Episode 3

How music is good for wellbeing: Edward Breen, musicologist, City Lit

One of the many side-effects of isolation is a compulsion to self-improve, such as learning a language or a new skill. It can become relentless. Musicologist, Edward Breen suggests another path, and one less driven. If we can stop, and allow for some space in our lives, we can rediscover and find things of value, such as a deep listening to music.

Episode 2

Retaining hope: Steven Oliver, retired bishop and former BBC chief producer

At times of stress and uncertainty, we might strive to ‘live in hope’. But hope is not a gift that comes to us from outside of ourselves, it is something we can build through our actions. Retired Bishop Steven Oliver shares how being active, and achieving small things can strengthen hope, and improve our wellbeing.

Episode 1

Coping with isolation: Bob Levin, GP

A holiday and a visit from a friend set in motion a series of events that no-one could have anticipated. GP Dr Bob Levin shares his account of being one of the first people in the UK to be isolated because of COVID-19. Listen to what helped him.

A man listening to music

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