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MGC 1998 Leaver

Malvern Alumnae 100 Tamsin Barber

I have always been interested in current affairs and finding new stories, but thought that I was too shy to be a journalist, however my determination has always seen me through. I studied for a degree in Archaeology at UCL, followed by a postgrad course in Broadcast Journalism at Cardiff University, where I was sponsored by the BBC. A month after leaving the course in 2004, I got my first job as a researcher at BBC Radio 4 working on Arts and History programmes.

My dream was to make radio documentaries – and in 2007 I produced my first programme - Fighting Chance - about ethnic minority boxers in Britain, bringing a fascinating world to a new audience. I made other documentaries including Colour Me White about skin bleaching and Wars of the Roses, following the Britain in Bloom Competition, which won a Garden Media Guild Award for National Radio Broadcast of the Year in 2009.  

In 2018, I went to Germany to make a BBC World Service documentary about child survivors of the Belsen Concentration camp – a remarkable experience. Other work includes Radio 4’s A History of the World in 100 Objects, where I visited parts of the British Museum that you can’t normally go in! I’ve worked on Radio 4’s obituary series Last Word, have done some reporting and produced a radio drama in Tokyo.

After a stint in television working as a researcher and development producer, my love for radio took me to the BBC World Service. I currently work as a Producer with the Presentation team and manage the Archive Project consisting of over 30,000 programmes, making digital content and documentaries. My next project is an exciting new radio series- where a teenager interviews a leading technology expert about their career.

What does success look like?

Knowing that you have tried your best and made the most of every opportunity.

What is your best piece of advice?

Never give up, however hard it may seem. Garner all your self-belief because opportunities will come.