Edwina Currie is a well-known broadcaster, writer and former politician. She is a consummate communicator in all three fields, with a down-to-earth no-nonsense attitude that blends lively debating skills with a sense of humour and fun. She was once summed up by fellow writer and MP Sir Julian Critchley as having "a brass neck, a silver tongue and a golden pen."
After a decade of public office in the city of Birmingham, Edwina stood for Parliament in 1983 and represented a Midlands seat as a Conservative MP for 14 years. She became one of the nation's best known politicians in the 1980s, serving as Junior Health Minister for two years (1986-1988) in Margaret Thatcher's government, during which time she championed healthy lifestyles, raised issues about heart disease, promoted women's cancer screening and was involved in the UK's first AIDS awareness campaign. Her political career as a Minister was, however, curtailed by the now famous eggs controversy, in which she issued a warning about salmonella in British eggs. Her remarks may have been closer to the truth than was generally accepted – or acceptable - at the time, but the backlash from farmers and the unrelenting media glare ultimately led to her decision to resign.
Turning down a request from John Major to return to ministerial office in 1992, Edwina became increasingly involved with career number two - writing. Perhaps not surprisingly, she says that writing has turned out to be a lot easier than politics and "in some ways loads more fun". In all, she has so far published ten books. She started with non-fiction, then turned to novels, which were invariably best-sellers in the UK; her Diaries 1987-1992 were published in 2002 and also proved to be compelling reading.
In 1991, Edwina became the first Conservative MP to appear on the BBC panel show Have I Got News for You. She appeared again two years later, in a special episode commemorating the release of Margaret Thatcher's memoirs, opposite fellow Liverpudlian Derek Hatton. Her career as a broadcaster really took off after the General Election in 1997. Edwina lost her seat and was promptly offered a job by the BBC. For five years she had her own successful radio programme, Late Night Currie (BBC Radio Five Live), with live phone-ins and reportage on topical issues. In 2002, she moved to HTV, presenting the television programme Currie Night until 2003.
Since then, Edwina has appeared in a string of reality television programmes, such as Wife Swap, in which she and her second husband John swapped places with John McCririck and his wife, Jenny. She has also appeared in the reality cooking show Hell's Kitchen with celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay, and Celebrity Stars in Their Eyes. Other TV shows she has appeared on include All Star Family Fortunes, Cash in the Attic, Bargain Hunt, Eggheads, Weakest Link (twice), Come Dine with Me (twice), Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway and Strictly Come Dancing (in 2011).
Edwina is a frequent contributor to news and current affairs programmes, including Sky News, BBC TV’s Newsnight and Question Time, Al Jazeera, BBC Radio 2, Radio 4 (Woman’s Hour, Any Questions and others), Radio 5 Live, BBC World Service, Ireland's RTE and others.
Edwina is a highly entertaining After-dinner and Business Speaker, ideal for many Corporate Events. To book her, contact a Prime Performers Booking Agent via the online booking enquiry form or alternatively call 020 7251 8222.
- Former Labour MP, Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Shadow Secretary of State for Education, Shadow Home Secretary and Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer.
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- Jeffrey Archer is a highly entertaining after dinner speaker who amuses his audience through accounts of his experiences in politics and his time as an author.