Sian Williams

Sian Williams

Author, Journalist

Sian Williams is a journalist, broadcaster and writer, with a background in psychology.

For more than thirty years, she has worked in daily broadcast news – as a reporter, producer and anchor of some of the BBC’s biggest shows. She is the main anchor on ITN/C5 ‘5 News’ and continuing to make network television and radio shows for the BBC, too.

She is also passionate about learning how our brains work and whether they can be re-wired, especially after a period of adversity or trauma.

Sian has an MSc in Psychology (Distinction), is a trained trauma assessor and has made two Radio 4 series on the mind and the brain, ‘The Thought Chamber’ and ‘How to Build a Better Brain’. The latter was described by The Psychologist magazine as ‘touching and illuminating, a great listen’.

The latest, a R4 documentary on ‘The Science of Resilience’ airs soon.

Her book ‘Rise: Surviving and Thriving after Trauma’ is out at the beginning of June. It’s a personal story of how we can rebuild after a traumatic event shatters our life. It’s illustrated by testimony (including her own) and backed up by science.

What the Papers Say:

“Colleagues at the BBC testify to her grit and skill as a hard news journalist”   Daily Telegraph

“Sian is… valued as a political interviewer” Daily Mail.

“Gordon Brown didn’t expect to be grilled by Sian Williams on his untrue claim that he has lowered that national debt, Sian challenged him, rightly” Fraser Nelson, Spectator

“Modern BBC newsreaders like Huw Edwards, George Alagiagh and Sian Williams have impeccable journalistic credentials. They wade through reams of wire copy and speak to correspondents themselves before writing cues, rather than reading out loud, stuff that’s been written for them” Brian Viner, Independent

“Sad news indeed that the wonderful Sian Williams is quitting BBC Breakfast when the programme moves North, despite pulling double the audience of its rival Daybreak” Amanda Platell, Daily Mail

“The Queen of the Breakfast Sofa” Peter Preston, Observer

“Breakfast TV’s answer to Anna Wintour..her controlled sass is as much a part (of the programme) as the red sofa or the Breakfast logo” Imogen Fox, Guardian

“The departure of popular Sian will be a huge blow to BBC bosses..she and Bill Turnbull have an army of fans” Daily Mirror

“For the past decade, she has been the doyenne of the BBC’s popular Breakfast show… the show has doubled its audience since she joined” Polly Dunbar, Daily Mail

Career to date:

1985 – 1990: BBC trainee reporter. BBC Radio Merseyside, Liverpool. Covered stories like the demise of Militant tendency and the Hillsborough disaster.

Jan – June 1990: Regional Journalist, North West Tonight, Manchester.

July 1990 – July 1997: Editor of the Day. Radio 4 The World at One and PM.

1990 – 1997: Editor R4 Specials. Budgets, Local and European Election coverage. 1992, special programme following the then Governor of Arkansas, Bill Clinton, as he launched his campaign to be US President. Also live programmes on the release of Beirut hostages and the Moscow riots as Yeltsin stormed Parliament. During the Bosnian peace talks, secured an exclusive interview with Radovan Karadic, the Bosnian Serb war criminal.

May 1997: Studio producer, BBC Radio 4 and BBC Radio 5, General Election programme.

June 1997: Editor. BBC News 24 (now the BBC News channel).

Nov 1997 – July 1999: Presenter 1600-1900 BBC News 24.

1999 – 2001: Special Correspondent, BBC Six O’Clock News.

2000: Presenter, BBC1 Millennium Programme.

2001 – 2005: Presenter, BBC Breakfast. Fri-Sun.

2005 – 2012: Presenter, BBC Breakfast, Mon-Thurs.

May 2010: Presenter, BBC1 General Election Coverage programme, 1000-1400.

July – August 2012: Presenter, BBC Olympic Breakfast.

1997 – 2013: Newsreader, BBC1 bulletins.

2010 – 2013 : Presenter of prime time series: National Treasures Live (x 6), Goodnight Britain (x 2), Your Money, Their Tricks (x 4). Guest presenter Crimewatch, The Andrew Marr Show.

April 2012 – August 2013: Co-presenter, BBC Radio 4 Saturday Live.

August 2013: The Sian Williams Interview Show (BBC Wales)

June 2013 – 2015: Presenter, BBC1 Sunday Morning Live.

January 2016 – present: Presenter, ITN/Channel 5 News, Presenter R4 documentaries

Publications

Sian Williams @sianwilliams100

Bumblebees' decline points to mass extinction – study https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/feb/06/bumblebees-decline-points-to-mass-extinction-study?utm_term=Autofeed&CMP=twt_b-gdnnews&utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Twitter#Echobox=1581016949

This sums it all up: "Witold calls on all of us to be braver, to stand up for injustice, to shout when we see prejudice rearing its ugly head" Thank you @sianwilliams100 https://twitter.com/Waterstones/status/1223961767811772416

What a very special evening 🍾.
Thank you ❤️ to everyone who made it so: @sianwilliams100 & ALL the judges; @WhichPennySmith; our 5 winning authors @mrsjaneymac @jonathancoe @jackfairweather @maryjean_chan @jasinbath; @GooseLiveEvents & @quaglinos.📚☕️💫
https://bit.ly/2Ots5Qv

Coming up on #5News: The inquiry into rogue breast surgeon Ian Paterson.

How was he allowed to carry out hundreds of unnecessary operations?

And, the Prime Minister brings forward his ban on new petrol, diesel and hybrid cars.

Join @SianWilliams100 on @Channel5_tv at 5pm.

Please, please, please do this. It may save your life. #WorldCancerDay

Picking the @CostaBookAwards Book of the Year is a huge responsibility so we asked @sianwilliams100 how she felt as Chair of the judges and why @jackfairweather's The Volunteer emerged as the winner: https://www.waterstones.com/blog/sian-williams-on-judging-the-costa-book-of-the-year?utm_source=WS_Costablog&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=february2020twitter

Coming up on #5News: 83 passengers who were trapped in China because of coronavirus are home.

They're now being taken into quarantine.

And, are you celebrating a happy Brexit Day?

Join @SianWilliams100 on @Channel5_tv at 5pm.

Newsroom cuts is the topic on @newswatchbbc. Including the @VictoriaLIVE Show. Lots of questions for Gavin Allen, head of BBC News Output. No 745pm transmission tonight. But BBC1 Sat 745am as usual and iplayer https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000f3l2

Nigel Farage tells @5_News he's "optimistic" #Brexit will be delivered - but threatens we may not have seen the last of him if it isn't https://twitter.com/Matt5News/status/1223253532431867904

Coming up on #5News: Evacuation delays for the Brits stranded in Wuhan - it's confirmed coronavirus has spread to every region in China.

And, more than half of all 7 year olds own a mobile phone. Is technology taking over our lives?

Join @SianWilliams100 on Channel 5 at 5pm.

BREAKING: Understand Sarah Sands has submitted her resignation as editor of Today programme. Six months notice.

Exploring drop-out rates: new review shows poor retention in trials of apps for depression https://elfi.sh/3aO9vfk

Drinking tea could cut Alzheimer’s risk ⁦@ggkuhnle⁩
⁦@DrDuaneRD⁩
https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/drinking-tea-could-cut-alzheimers-risk-x6rrlnnlq?shareToken=6c42ae43f55f004b1bcf7d5ba982fef6

And here you are mucking about in rehearsals. Before the sparkles. But we are a riot of spring flowers, @WhichPennySmith. Excellent hosting of the @CostaBookAwards as usual..

"No more being talked down to, no more being bullied"

Nigel Farage was cut off during his final speech at the European Parliament, because he and his Brexit Party delegation stood up to wave miniature union flags.

Coming up on #5News: It's the end of the line for troubled rail operator Northern, as the Government prepares to take over control.

And, ministers prepare to hold an emergency meeting, as the coronavirus spreads.

Join @SianWilliams100 on @Channel5_tv at 5pm.

Well deserved, @jackfairweather. The @CostaBookAwards judges were proud to choose it as its winner. More on the extraordinary story behind the Polish resistance hero at 6.30 on @5_News with @ClaudiaLizaTV

Here's the little video we made to celebrate our friend and comedy inspiration Nicholas Parsons, avuncular entertainment legend and steely chairman of Just a Minute since its very first episode, in 1967. We will miss him terribly...

new podcast out now - is there anyone better than @anandMenon1 on this stuff ? https://twitter.com/5_News/status/1222538106953400321

The Duchess of Cambridge helped serve breakfast at a pre-school this morning.

Kate visited the Stockwell Gardens Nursery in London - she's currently promoting her '5 Big Questions On The Under-5s' survey.