Vanessa Frake worked in the prison service for 27 years. For 16 of those years she was the head of security and operations at the notorious male prison Wormwood Scrubs. Her career saw her cross paths with some of Britain's most notorious criminals. She was the main officer responsible for serial killer Rose West whilst she awaited trial, she was made a cup of tea by Myra Hindley, and she looked after Pete Doherty. Vanessa was awarded an MBE for her work in the prison service in 2012, and took early retirement in 2013. She has now written her memoirs in 'The Governor: My Life in Britain's Most Notorious Prisons'.
This year the British town crier championships will be held in silence. Brenda Willison has been a town crier for 34 years. Based in Newmarket, Suffolk she’s been the Chair of the Loyal Company of Town Criers for the last 10 years. Last year their annual competition was cancelled so this year they decided to hold one online which only involves the content of the crying and the winner will be announced on May 13th. She explains to Anita why she thinks women make the best town criers.
MPs believe there is a growing ‘digital threat to democracy’ which is preventing women from a career in politics. Yesterday in parliament there was a call for more action with female MPs from all sides recounting their experiences. Academic studies have shown that harassment against women has increased over the past two general elections, with women experiencing double the increase that men have experienced. Reporter Melanie Abbott talks to Anita about the issues.
And we have the second in our series Second Chances. Our reporter Milly Chowles had a baby last year, she’s in long term recovery from addiction and feels she was given lots of chances to change before she became a mother. As the number of children in care rises and with drug and alcohol issues a factor in many cases, are women at risk of having their children removed getting the help they need? And what is the cost for their children and society as a whole if they don't? In five authored pieces Milly tells her story and listens to the experiences of mothers who face stigma and a fight to access services.