I’m Matt Stadlen and for almost 20 years I’ve been talking to and interviewing public figures from around the world. In this series I’ll be interviewing famous names from every walk of life and with a big range of views, politics and perspectives. Every guest will get 20 questions, and I hope that you’ll have a better sense of each of them by the end of their interview.
20 Questions With Alastair Campbell
53:07Who better to talk to in General Election year than Tony Blair's former Director of Communications and Strategy, the man who helped drive New Labour to power and keep it there. Here he gives his verdicts on Starmer and Sunak, sets out a blueprint for growth, reveals why he became so involved in the fallout from the Brexit referendum, laments the move towards populist parties in Europe and says that even he might get to the point of queasiness about rejoining the EU, and talks about his mental health and how he is at the moment.
20 Questions With Bettany Hughes
39:30Classical historian Bettany Hughes takes us on a revelatory journey through the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. From the Great Pyramid at Giza to the Lighthouse of Alexandria via the Hanging Gardens of Babylon. Immerse yourself in the beauty and brutality of a world that lives on in us.
20 Questions With Matthew Taylor
52:01Matthew Taylor is the Chief Executive of the NHS Confederation. Here he gives his take on the challenges facing the NHS, the shortfalls in funding, the need for capital investment, the under-management of the health service, the choices facing politicians, the problems in social care, huge waiting lists, the cost analyses of prevention and innovation, the economics of an ageing population, junior doctors' pay and staff morale. This is a rare opportunity to learn more about a British institution during an election year.
20 Questions With Liam Byrne MP
39:39Liam Byrne sets out his manifesto for a British wealth-sharing democracy. Linking wealth to freedom, he makes the argument for a fairer society and sets out an optimistic plan for the future. As Labour's outgoing Chief Secretary to the Treasury under Gordon Brown, Byrne left a note for his coalition successor explaining that the money had run out. It's a note that has dogged his party ever since and his new book, The Inequality Of Wealth, Why It Matters And How To Fix It, is in part an answer to his critics. Byrne explains why inequality matters and offers practical steps towards tackling it.
20 Questions With Richard Tice
59:23The success or otherwise of Richard Tice, leader of Reform UK, could decide the extent of Keir Starmer's majority at the General Election, or whether he even wins a majority. Determined to punish the Tories, whom he once helped fund, Tice is out to bring down Rishi Sunak's government. In this lively and robust encounter, he explains his motivations and outlines some of his key policies, including on tax, immigration and Net Zero.
20 Questions With Sir Vince Cable
36:06Sir Vince Cable led the Liberal Democrats twice and was Business Secretary for the entire five years of the Conservative Lib Dem coalition government under David Cameron. Here he makes his predictions for the next General Election, assesses immigration policy, advocates higher taxes, defends the period of austerity when he was in government, analyses Keir Starmer's leadership of the Labour Party, discusses ethics in foreign policy and encourages engagement with China despite accusations that the Chinese regime has committed genocide against the Uyghurs in Xinjiang.
20 Questions With Peter Hitchens
32:23The author and often outspoken columnist for the Mail On Sunday gives his verdict on both the Tories and Labour as a General Election approaches, describes his faith, explains his method of debating, reveals the nature of his relationship with his late brother, Christopher Hitchens, and talks about the impact of his childhood.
20 Questions With Jim White
52:34Most famous for hosting Deadline Day on Sky Sports in his yellow tie, Jim White is Mr Football. Here the Talk Sport presenter chats about his new book, Deadline Day, that he co-wrote with Kaveh Solhekol. Full of his characteristic enthusiasm, Jim leads us on a journey of his love for the beautiful game, taking us behind the scenes of some of the biggest stories in sport.