“We’re not afraid of a taboo” Woman’s Hour announces new late-night show with Lauren Laverne

Posted by
Harriet Hall

Radio 4 Woman’s Hour has announced it is to launch a new late night programme with Lauren Laverne at the helm.

The radio show, known to many of us who had it handed down from our mothers, whose own mothers before them listened along intently, announces the news as part of its 70th anniversary celebrations this year.

While the familiar 10am slot broaches several topical discussions over a course of 45 minutes, the late night show will focus on one issue discussed, in-depth, over a full hour.

“We wanted to do a programme where we could really let things breathe, really chew things over – get some candour and real discussion going - in a different way from the morning programme,” Alice Feinstein, Woman’s Hour editor, tells

The late night show premiered in August last year as an eight-part series, and proved so successful that is has been extended into a regular monthly slot, to be aired at 11pm on the last Friday of every month, and available 24 hours before that online (starting Thursday 28th January).

Laverne will be joining the ranks to take her place alongside Jenni Murray’s comforting husky tones and Jane Garvey’s witty conversational style.

woman's hour

Woman's Hour presenters, Jenni Murray and Jane Garvey

“Lauren is a great broadcaster, she’s funny and intelligent - and ultimately interested in what we’re interested in,” says Feinstein. “Our audience really like her.”

Laverne, whose own CV is brimming with enviable accomplishments (broadcaster, author, television presenter), is thrilled to become part of the furniture at such an esteemed programme:

“I’m so excited to be part of the Woman’s Hour team…I hope that our late night shows can continue the programme’s fearless, surprising and engaging line of inquiry,” she says.

As well as the late-night show, Woman’s Hour will be piloting an ambitious new video project for BBC Taster in February – The Green Room Project - creating short, shareable interviews with celebrities (including the likes of Julianne Moore, Kylie Minogue and even Craig David).

Discussing everything from food to sex, life hacks and religion, the new additions hope to invite a younger audience to the programme which already boasts a no-holds-barred approach to women’s issues.

“We’ve never been afraid of a taboo – there’s barely anything we wouldn’t talk about. What’s different now is that we can discuss it all in a longer more relaxed style,” says Feinstein. 

You can listen to past episodes of Woman's Hour here and download the podcast with the BBC Radio iplayer app