Related to: 'From Cradle to Stage'

Benedict Wells

Benedict Wells was born in 1984 in Munich. At the age of six, he started his journey through three Bavarian boarding schools. Upon graduating school in 2003, he moved to Berlin, where he decided against an academic education and instead started to dedicate his time to writing. In 2016 he won the European Union Prize for Literature for his third novel, The End of Loneliness, which has been in the German bestseller list for over a year. After years of living in Barcelona, Wells has recently returned to Berlin.

Brenda Ashford

Brenda is 91 years old and lives near Milton Keynes. She worked as a Norland Nanny for over sixty years and loved every minute of it.

Don Stephens

Don Stephens is the founder and president of the international charity Mercy Ships. The charity currently operates three hospital vessels: the Anastasis, the Caribbean Mercy and the Island Mercy. These astonishing ships take relief and development to the port cities of some of the world's poorest countries. Every year, Mercy Ships' doctors perform more than a thousand complex operations that transform people's lives - including complicated maxilofacial surgery - in areas where up to half the population has no access to basic health care.

Elizabeth Sherill

Elizabeth Sherrill is a prolific Christian writer, based in the USA. She often collaborates on books with her husband John.

Fern Riddell

Dr Fern Riddell is a historian specialising in sex, suffrage and culture in the Victorian and Edwardian eras. She appears regularly on TV and radio, and writes for the Guardian, Huffington Post, Telegraph and Times Higher Education among others, and is a columnist for BBC History Magazine.

Gervase Phinn

Dr Gervase Phinn is a teacher, freelance lecturer, author, poet, educational consultant and visiting professor of education. For fourteen years he taught in a range of schools, then acted as General Adviser for Language Development in Rotherham before moving on to North Yorkshire, where he spent ten years as a school inspector - time that has provided much source material for his books. He has four grown up children and four grandchildren and lives near Doncaster. Visit Gervase's website, www.gervase-phinn.com.

Giovanna Fletcher

Giovanna grew up in Essex with her Italian dad Mario, mum Kim, big sister Giorgina and little brother Mario, and with family playing such a big part of her life it was only natural that she had always dreamed of having children of her own. Giovanna and her husband Tom Fletcher have two young sons Buzz and Buddy and share glimpses of their family life through their YouTube channels (giovannasworld) and on their social media (twitter: @mrsgifletcher, facebook: MrsGiFletcher and Instagram: mrsgifletcher). A bestselling novelist, actress, TV presenter, vlogger and blogger, Giovanna is most importantly a mum and her pledge to spread positivity wherever she goes has earned her a vast following.

Graham Norton

Graham Norton is one of the UK's most treasured comedians and presenters. Born in Clondalkin, a suburb of Dublin, Norton's first big TV appearance was as Father Noel Furlong on Channel 4's Father Ted in the early 1990s. He then secured a prime time slot on Channel 4 with his chat shows So Graham Norton and V Graham Norton. Known for his quick wit and flamboyant style Graham began hosting a variety of talent shows on BBC One fromStrictly Dance Fever and Andrew Lloyd Webber's How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria? to The Eurovision Song Contest and BAFTAs. Graham was soon approached by the BBC to front his own self titled chat show The Graham Norton Show in 2007. Graham Norton has won 5 BAFTAs for Best Entertainment Performace. He presents a show on BBC Radio 2 every Saturday and also writes, as Agony Aunt, weekly in a column for The Telegraph.

Henry Hemming

Henry Hemming lives in London, UK.

Jane Carter Woodrow

Jane Carter Woodrow has a PhD in Criminology from Cambridge and has worked as a scriptwriter on several high-profile television dramas, including In Suspicious Circumstances and The Bill.

Jasvinder Sanghera

Jasvinder Sanghera CBE was born and brought up in Derby. A survivor of a forced marriage, she is the co-founder of Karma Nirvana, a national project that supports both men and women affected by honour-based crimes and forced marriages. Jasvinder is also an international speaker and a Leading Expert Advisor to the Courts in child and criminal proceedings. Her memoir SHAME was a Sunday Times Top 10 Bestseller. Jasvinder has brought the issue of forced marriage into the public eye and helped the Forced Marriage bill go through Parliament. She has won numerous awards for her work including a Metropolitan Police GG2 Diversity Award in 2005. In 2007 she received one of the prestigious Women of the Year awards. Jasvinder was made an Honorary Doctor of the University of Derby in 2008. She was awarded a Pride of Britain Award in 2009 and was named a Cosmopolitan Ultimate Woman of the Year in 2010. In 2011 the Guardian listed Jasvinder amongst the top 100 inspirational women in the world.

Jenny Tomlin

Jenny Tomlin was born and brought up in east London. She has two children and lives happily in France. Jenny is a bestselling author and children's rights campaigner.

Jodi Picoult

Jodi Picoult is the author of twenty-four internationally bestselling novels, including My Sister's Keeper, House Rules and The Storyteller, and has also co-written two YA books with her daughter Samantha van Leer, Between the Lines and Off the Page. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and children. Jodi's UK website is www.jodipicoult.co.uk and she can be found on Facebook and Twitter at facebook.com/JodiPicoultUK and twitter.com/jodipicoult. She also has a YouTube channel www.youtube.com/user/JodiPicoultOfficial.

John Grogan

John Grogan's first book, Marley & Me was a number one international bestseller and was released as a major movie in 2008, breaking box office records. The DVD was released in July 09. John lives in Pennsylvania with his wife, Jenny, and their three children. His latest book, The Longest Trip Home is out now.

John Sherrill

John Sherrill is a prolific Christian writer, based in the USA. He often collaborates on books with his wife Elizabeth.

Juno Dawson

JUNO DAWSON is the multi-award-winning author of dark teen thrillers. Her first non-fiction book, BEING A BOY, tackled puberty, sex and relationships in a frank and funny fashion, and a follow-up for young LGBT people, THIS BOOK IS GAY, came out in 2014. Juno is a regular contributor to Attitude Magazine, GT and the Guardian and has contributed to news items concerning sexuality, identity, literature and education on BBC Woman's Hour, Front Row, This Morning and Newsnight. She writes full time and lives in Brighton.

Kay Langdale

Kay Langdale is the author of five novels: Away From You, Choose Me, Her Giant Octopus Moment, What the Heart Knows (Rowohlt, Germany) and Redemption (Transita; published as If Not Love by Thomas Dunne Books.) Visit Kay's website at www.kaylangdale.com. Follow her on Twitter: @KayLangdale.

Laura Jane Williams

Laura Jane Williams has written about love, lust, and her feelings everywhere from The Guardian to Buzzfeed to RED, to the Telegraph, Stylist and more, and from September 2016 - February 2017 was Grazia's single girl dating columnist. She is the author of heartbreak memoir BECOMING, Marie Claire's #BREAKFREE from Fear ambassador, and blogs about being 'messily human' at www.superlativelyrude.com

Lena Kennedy

Lena Kennedy lived all her life in the East End of London and wrote with great energy about the people and times she knew there. She was 67 before her first novel, MAGGIE, was accepted for publication. Since then her bestselling novels have shown her to be among the finest and best loved of contemporary novelists. She died in August 1986

Lynda Bellingham

Lynda enjoyed a career spanning forty-five years. Her roles covered drama as Helen Herriott in All Creatures Great and Small and comedy in her own series Faith in the Future, which won Best Comedy in 1998. She also managed to give us a twirl in Strictly Come Dancing and plenty of lip as a Loose Woman for six years. She created the role of Chris in the stage version of Calendar Girls and after a successful run in the West End went on to spend four years playing to full houses in a nationwide tour and she is still loved and remembered as the long-suffering mum in the OXO commercials. Lynda had previously written Lost and Found which was a Sunday Times bestseller and she enjoyed bestselling success with her fiction writing too. Her real life family brought her great joy and she lived in north London with her youngest son, Robert, and her stepson Bradley, while her eldest son Michael lived just round the corner. She finally found true happiness with her husband Michael Pattemore and they were married in 2008 on her sixtieth birthday. Lynda sadly lost her battle with cancer in October 2014.