Legendary broadcaster Vanessa Feltz has experienced a long career, with numerous highs and a series of very public lows. In the latest episode of Liz Taylor’s podcast series ‘Events That Made Me,’ Vanessa discusses key events that have affected her personal life, career, and future ambitions, including her wish to star in a Hollywood film. Plus, how her controversial moments under the media spotlight such as the ‘ill-fated’ move to her daytime BBC programme, and the now infamous ‘writing on the table’ episode of Celebrity Big Brother, have all contributed to her resilience, a successful career, and a bold move to positively transform her family life in 2017.
Speaking to host Liz in typical candid Vanessa Feltz style, she charts her career in broadcasting including the contentious newspaper article she penned on the ‘death of the typical Jewish mother.’ Adding how the early skirmish with controversy kick started her radio career, then onto prime-time ITV with the UK’s first ‘Oprah Winfrey style chat show.’ Confessing she ‘wishes she hadn’t done it,’ her subsequent disastrous move to BBC daytime was a well-documented failure. Allegations of ‘fake guests’ and the negative scandal that followed it, meant only one month after her BBC Daytime show launched, she described it as a ‘shocking failure.’ Vanessa explains that even today, it is still something she deeply regrets but has moved on from.
On The Vanessa Show: “I felt that I was doing the very best I could. And I felt that I was as good on this show as I’d ever been on the other one. This one just a few months later seemed to be a real sort of shocking failure. At the time, it really did feel pretty seismic and very dramatic. But my husband left very soon after, so I had absolutely no choice at all about carrying on working for financial reasons. And so, I’ve just had to soldier on.”.
Vanessa and Liz explore why becoming a grandmother changed Vanessa’s outlook and meant that ‘seizing the moment’ become so important to them both, as Vanessa recently demonstrated with a family motivated purchase in 2017 of a home in Cork, Ireland.
On her house in Ireland: “I didn’t have a second home. And I just thought it was beyond me to even think of it. Then scroll past all the years and you get to 2017. And I had these beautiful grand babies living in a very urban, polluted part of north London. And I thought. I’m going to buy my grand babies some grass and some trees and the sea air and the outdoor life, and I’m going do it. And I did. I bought a house and it’s a lovely house. It’s not a stately home. It’s not a mansion. It’s just a house. It’s right on the Atlantic Ocean. So, all you can see at the back is the sea. That’s all you can see, and you can see the liners and you can see the cargo boats going to America. And it’s just the loveliest, most beautiful, most tranquil. I just absolutely love it.”
And when it came to a question from host Liz about future burning ambitions, Vanessa gleaned inspiration from an interview with the late Lionel Blair: “I said to him, Lionel, is there anything you still like to do? And he said completely seriously. Yes. I’d still like to star in a major Hollywood film. And he was about 88 and was, I think, really hoping that that might happen. So, I might just have the same answer as Lionel Blair, God, rest his soul and say, yes, I’m looking forward to starring in a major Hollywood feature film.”
In an open and honest 30 minutes Liz and Vanessa cover a whole host of subjects including marrying young, Jewish family expectations and her controversial Celebrity Big Brother appearance, on which Vanessa added:
“It turned out to be much more emotionally explosive than anyone could ever have imagined. And on the very first night Anthea (Anthea Turner) was nominated for eviction and burst into tears. And suddenly there was an actual person, that we actually knew, right next to us on camera sobbing because of a format of a show…. Obviously, the moment I got out of there, I was absolutely fine, but I wouldn’t say I enjoyed it very much at the time. It’s always given me something to talk about at dinner parties ever since because even 20 years later, just as you’ve asked, we, people are still asking about that show!”
To hear the full story, listen to ‘Events That Made Me – Inspirational Women’ with Vanessa Feltz here https://podfollow.com/etmm-liz-taylor from October 27, 2022.
Commenting on the latest episode of her podcast Liz Taylor, said: “I have always admired Vanessa and listened to and watched her avidly over the decades. I’ve been fascinated by her ability to go through the downs, and then after that, shake them off to reach back up high again. She’s a real inspiration to others and spending time with Vanessa was an absolute joy.”
Since its launch, the Events That Made Me Podcast has featured in the top 10 of the Apple Business and Entrepreneur Podcast charts. The eclectic blend of guests is drawn from a wide range of genre – from media to music, sculpture to sports, food to floristry, and business to LGBT+ campaigning. Catherine Tyldesley, Gok Wan, Ruth Langsford, Lisa Riley, Sally Lindsay, Eamonn Holmes, Antony Cotton, Howard Donald, Tom Kerridge, Katie McGlynn, and The Apprentice ‘Queen of Mean’ Linda Plant were just some of the celebrity guests to share the highs and lows of their road to stardom in previous seasons of Events That Made Me. Each episode is accompanied by an Air Extension bonus episode, where the host shares the interview elements that resonated with her own experiences. Plus, special series and stand-alone episodes focusing on entrepreneurs, International Women’s Day, and LGBT+ Month are all still available at https://www.liz-taylor-consulting.co.uk/index.php/ltc-media/podcasts/