This year marks 25 years since I started my radio journey. A lot has happened since a 17-year-old me nervously walked into a wooden shed where the St Peter’s hospital radio is based.

As you know, I am passionate about radio as a way to connect our community and as a platform for people with learning disabilities to express themselves and get their voices on the radio.

Since Covid we have all learnt to do things remotely on Zoom. And while face to face is always my preferred way of working, being online means that I can involve and work with people in different parts of the country. 

This is something we have seen in the other groups we run at Sunnybank Trust, some of which are still online so somebody not being local is not always a barrier. 

I want to talk about Lydia who I have supported a lot through the Sunny Sessions. Lydia lives in Bournemouth, having moved there from up north a few years back. 

She has MS and autism and other health conditions but she tries not to let that define who she is and always tries to have a sunny outlook on life. A real inspiration!

Lydia’s passion is news and she loves Channel 5 News and Newsround. I saw her on social media talking about how she listened to her local radio station’s newspaper review each morning and then sent her partner out to buy her paper of choice based on the review she heard. 

I got in touch and suggested we record a monthly news review on Zoom for our Sunny Sessions Extra show on Surrey Hills Radio. We have been doing this for a few months and Lydia really engaged well with this. We have done other radio work together, including Lydia picking and talking about her top five songs of all time. One of those choices was the Belinda  Carlisle song We Want The Same Thing. She told me how, as somebody with a disability, she wants the same thing as everybody else. 

I  recently met up with Lydia in person, as I made the 90-minute train ride from Woking to Bournemouth, which is much easier than driving. 

As we arrived at the station, Lydia and her partner Frank were waiting and we went to her favourite cafe, Naked Coffee, which thankfully didn’t require the removal of any clothes. 

It was lovely to catch up face to face and hearing the impact doing radio work with me has had on Lydia’s life makes it all worthwhile. If you want to read Lydia’s blog you can find it at

I also want to give a quick mention to the young man who was working at Morrisons petrol station the other week. He asked me if I was the one who writes in the paper. 

Nice to  feel like a celeb for 30 seconds at least. 

Listen to Sunny Sessions, the inclusive radio show from The Sunnybank Trust, on Surrey Hills Community Radio on Mondays and Thursdays, 11am.

Sunny Sessions is also on Radio Woking every Wednesday at 9am.

My Radio Woking shows are Wednesday breakfast 7am to 9am and Sunday mornings 9am to noon. 

If you want to take part in my radio shows you can reach me on email at [email protected]