Attack on Manchester

We are devastated by last night’s attack in Manchester. Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone affected. For all those asking, today’s show will go ahead as normal, as we continue to celebrate the diversity of women in Greater Manchester.

Our spirit, creativity, and commitment to making the world around us a better place will never be dimmed.

Any attempt to divide us will only strengthen us.

An emergency number, 0161 856 9400, has been set up.

There will be a vigil tonight at 6pm in Albert Square.

Tuesday 23 May, 2017

This week’s show is all about self-esteem. What is self-esteem? What are the barriers we face as women to achieving it? Why is it so important?

Claire Trivino will be telling us about the courses she runs on self-esteem, and she will be addressing some of these questions. With her will be Laura Gilchrist, who has attended one of Claire’s courses. Laura will be sharing her experiences with us.

Self-esteem can also be linked to body confidence. We are delighted to be joined by Lauren Coulman, who runs body confidence campaign Free to be OK With Me. Lauren will be discussing her thoughts on self-esteem and body confidence.

Lifestyle and beauty blogger-vlogger, Kat Horrocks has a following of young women. We will be asking her about the responsibility she feels to present information sensitively to impressionable young women. Social media has brought with it increasing pressures on young women to look a certain way. What are the self-esteem related issues she hears young girls worrying about?

We will also be joined by Esther Burton-Jackson, whose brilliant podcast is called Vulva La Revolution. Esther will find herself on the other side of the microphone, as we ask her about her podcast  and some of the brilliant people she has met along the way.

See you at 4pm on Salford City Radio!






Tuesday 16 May, 2017

It has been 4 months since the Women’s March which saw a mass, co-ordinated mobilisation of women around the world, speaking up for their – and others’ – voices to be heard.

In Greater Manchester, one of the organisers of the march was Pamela Berry. 4 months on, Pamela will be joining us to tell us what is planned next for the Women’s March Manchester. There is an active Facebook page for the group, so do take a look and get involved in the discussions!

Almost 2 weeks ago, Greater Manchester elected its first Metropolitan Mayor, Andy Burnham. The role of Metropolitan Mayor is part of the wider discussion on devolution and the Northern Powerhouse. How can we use this as an opportunity to get women’s voices heard? We have already talked about this issue with Eve Holt of Diva Manc, and, more recently, Donna Hall, Chief Executive of Wigan Council. The upcoming People’s Powerhouse Conference will help to address some of these issues.

One person who has answers to some of the questions about women and the local economy is Victory Bettany. Victoria is a senior researcher with the Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES), a progressive “think and do” tank for people and places. Victoria will be joining us to talk about the opportunities for our local economy.

We talk about diversity in the workplace, but what do we mean by “neural diversity”? We will be joined by Di Roege, project manager for the Neural Diversity Network, to learn more. In a recent blog post, Di talked about how it is harder to diagnose autism in adults, and even harder in women, as women tend to find methods of functional conformity. This raises some interesting questions about how women are socialised, and we will be considering these with Diane.

We will also be joined by choreographer and dating expert, Inez Roberta. Inez will be talking about her upcoming book, Around the World in 800 Dates, a brutally honest account of her dating experiences. She will be telling us about the good, the bad and the ugly, as well as sharing with us her tips for safe internet dating.

Finally, don’t miss our competition. The Om Yoga Show is coming to Manchester on 19, 20 and 21 June. Tickets cost between £5 and £16. One event taking place at the exhibition is a body positive yoga workshop, Everybody Has a Yoga Body. The workshop will be run by Donna Noble. Donna has very kindly offered to give away a pair of FREE tickets to the entire exhibition. (You will still have to pay £5 to attend her workshop, but the 3 day exhibition will be free of charge for you.)

To enter the competition, all you have to do is tweet us @divasupnorth and Donna @curvesomeyoga with a body positive message. You can also post a body positive message on our Facebook page. If you prefer, you can email us at

While you’re there, we’d love to you follow us and Donna on Twitter and Facebook!

A lucky winner will be selected at random on Wednesday 17 May.

Good luck!



We are delighted to announce a competition!

The Om Yoga Show is coming to Manchester on 19, 20 and 21 June. Tickets cost between £5 and £16.

One event taking place at the exhibition is a body positive yoga workshop, Everybody Has a Yoga Body. The workshop will be run by Donna Noble. Donna has very kindly offered to give away a pair of FREE tickets to the entire exhibition. (You will still have to pay £5 to attend her workshop, but the 3 day exhibition will be free of charge for you.)

To enter the competition, all you have to do is tweet us @divasupnorth and Donna @curvesomeyoga with a body positive message. You can also post a body positive message on our Facebook page.

While you’re there, we’d love to you follow us and Donna on Twitter and Facebook.

A lucky winner will be selected at random on Wednesday 17 May.

Good luck!

Tuesday 9 May, 2017

Back in January, we featured a campaign by the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) to legalise abortion, We Trust Women.

(We also featured a pro-life charity.)

This week, we will be returning to the subject of legalising abortion, as we speak to Emma Runswick. Emma is a medical student, NHS campaigner and Trade Unionist at the British Medical Association (BMA). She organises the Medical Students’ Conference, and will be speaking at the upcoming BMA Annual Conference, at which she will be putting forward the case for legalising abortion. She will be telling us about the regulations and safeguards the BMA Ethics Committee would propose in the event of legalisation.

Canadian-based Louise Green is a globally recognised plus-size athlete, personal trainer, and leading voice for plus-size women.

In 2008, Louise founded Body Exchange, a revolutionary fitness programme, dedicated to the plus-size community, and has since coached over a thousand women to unleash their inner athlete and find peace with their bodies.

Fuelled by the fitness industry’s shocking neglect of people of size, she has worked tirelessly on behalf of the Body Advocacy Movement, inspiring countless women and girls to take control of their health, improve their well-being and boost their self-confidence through personal fitness.

She has just brought out a new book, Big Fit Girl, published by Greystone Books, and will be talking to us about fitness – especially for plus-sized women – and body confidence.

The Last Wave by Gillian Best is published by Freight Books. It is her debut novel, and we will be talking to her about her writing, and why she chose to focus on some of the themes in the book.



As we mark Mental Health Awareness Week this week, we will be speaking to Jessica Murdoch, Operations Director for Imago Training, which she co-founded 2 years ago. Imago Training provides mental health skills and awareness training. It will be holding a Tea and Chat event for Mental Health Awareness Week, and this will be taking place on Friday, 12 May from 9am-5pm. The venue is the Sunshine House Community Centre, Wellington Street, Scholes, Wigan WN1 3SA

Also joining us this week is learning and self-development coach, Dora Blake. Her company, Headway LD, runs self-awareness courses for adults and children, which aim to build resilience and optimise achievement in life. We will be talking to Dora about her Resilient People Project and her Resilient Kids Project.

Tuesday 9 May at 4pm on Salford City Radio!

Tuesday 2 May, 2017

This week, we will be examining various aspects of women in leadership.


We open by taking a closer look at women in the technology industries. What IS the tech industry? Are enough women going for jobs in this sector? Is it women-friendly? Are women encouraged and supported enough in the area of technology? We will be joined by some brilliant women, all of whom are doing some great work in this field:


Kirsty Styles is a tech journalist, and Programme and Skills Talent Lead at Tech North, a company which promotes the growth of the digital business sector in the north of England – so we’ll be asking her what sort of job opportunities there are for women in technology in the north of England in particular.


She will be joined by Llara Geddes, Tegan Jones, Annie O’Toole and Chelsea Slater.


Llara Geddes is a UX (user experience) consultant for digital agency Amaze. With a professional background in marketing and social media, she is a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) ambassador, sharing the possibilities of a career in technology with young people.


Tegan Jones works in digital communications for the Bishop Simeon Trust, which supports vulnerable people in South Africa. She is an expert in how digital can be used by the third sector, and is passionate about addressing the potential dangers that technology can pose to a domestic abuse survivor and other vulnerable people.


Annie O’Toole started tech ecommerce platform Juxdit in 2014, and was nominated as national Entrepreneur of the Year just a year later. With her expertise in growing tech start-ups, she recently joined augmented reality hardware company SwapBots to help the company with its international expansion. Annie also specialises in edtech (technology education), AR (augmented reality) and VR (virtual reality).


Chelsea Slater’s social enterprise, Liverpool Girl Geeks,  is a community of women dedicated to providing training for other women and young girls to inspire them to pursue a career in tech. Chelsea was recently asked to join the Creative and Digital Board of Liverpool’s Local Enterprise Partnership and is committed to addressing the gender imbalance within STEM industries, alongside the ongoing skills gap throughout the North.


With such talented women across the North West, there is an obvious pool of talent from which to draw as we move towards devolved powers in Greater Manchester and Liverpool with the metropolitan mayoral elections taking place next week. We have been hearing about the Northern Powerhouse for the last few years, but how powerful are northern women? How much of a voice do we have in talks happening around the Northern Powerhouse?


A recent conference held to discuss the Northern Powerhouse was heavily criticised for its under-representation of women. One of the formidable women who came forward to call for this to be addressed was Donna Hall, Chief Executive of Wigan Council. Donna will be joining us on the programme for a discussion on how best to represent women and include women as the driving force behind the Northern Powerhouse.


An inclusive conference, The People’s Powerhouse, is planned for 12 July. You can follow updates on the Twitter and Facebook pages.


We will continue our debate on women in leadership with Professor Lisa Downing. Lisa is an academic, with a particular interest in the way culture represents ideas of normality and abnormality with regard to gender and sexuality. Her most recent book, The Subject of Murder: Gender, Exceptionality, and the Modern Killer,  looked at violent women and female murderers.


Lisa is currently writing a book about women and selfishness. There are currently a number of female political leaders around the world. We will be taking a closer look at how these women are represented. How and why are some women portrayed as selfish? Do judgments and standards apply to women that do not apply to male leaders? Is the idea of selfishness itself gendered?


While it is sobering to be talking once again about period poverty here in the UK,  we will be joined by Christina Ward, who runs The Monthly Gift Manchester, a campaign to tackle period poverty. We’ll be hearing about how she started the project and who she helps. This is such a worthwhile and important project, so do take a look at The Monthly Gift crowdfunding page, and have a look to see how you can donate sanitary protection to the campaign.



Tuesday 25 April, 2017

Social enterprises feature heavily in this week’s show, with some phenomenal female entrepreneurs talking about their projects.


Claire Haigh will be telling us about her initiatives, which include #CollabOutLoud. Through this, she leads collaborative approaches to managing public services. What are the challenges faced by public services, and how can a collaborative approach alleviate some of these challenges and benefit people more widely, especially in Greater Manchester. Claire will be drawing on her extensive experience to tackle some of these questions.


Nickala Torkington will be telling us about her social enterprise, Flourish. Flourish is a peer network which supports women to create the changes they identify as needed in their communities. Not only does Flourish encourage female entrepreneurs, but it also drives change in communities at grassroots level, through the perspective of women.


Having supported over 300 women already, Flourish is on its last crowdfunding push, and you can donate to its work here.



In our discussion on managing public services, we will inevitably touch on austerity. Dr Sarah Marie Hall is a lecturer in Human Geography at the University of Manchester. She has recently led The Everyday Austerity Project, which has culminated in an exhibition around Greater Manchester. She will be discussing her findings with us, which include the evidence that women suffer disproportionately from the effects of austerity. We will be asking her how this manifests itself and what can be done to counteract it.


We will also be joined by Jane Kenyon, a serial entrepreneur and inspirational speaker and coach. She will be telling us about her work with teenage girls and young adults, through Girls Out Loud. We will hear about the different programmes she runs, and why she has chosen to work with this age group.



A group of women who will be cycling to the studio are Lady Pedal. After an energetic ride (through what we hope will be sunny Salford), Poland Marczewska, Hannah Milton and Emma Petit will be telling us about how they bring women together to take ownership of their health and independence through cycling. And if anyone is interested in taking up cycling, the sunny weather we have been enjoying this week provides the perfect climate in which to get started!