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


Sian Williams @sianwilliams100

Now more than ever, it's vital that Government spending on #MentalHealth is strategic.

We've identified 10 key problems within the mental health system and the solutions which could make a big difference to people's lives: #NowOrNever #SpendingReview

Coming up on #5News: A stark weather warning, as experts global warming is already changing our climate.

The children getting less exercise since the pandemic.

A day of mixed emotions for Team GB in Tokyo.

Join @sianwilliams100 and the team on @channel5_tv from 5pm.


“You can do anything you want to do. Trying and failing is no problem as long as you try"
@Helenglovergb who’s had 3 kids in the last 2 years, is the first Mum to row and did it with Polly Swann who was training as an @nhs doctor.

The plan to end self-isolation for fully vaccinated people who come into contact with a positive covid case is "nailed on", according to the Prime Minister.

Our Political Editor @andybell5news explains.

#5News | @sianwilliams100

Sometimes, I want to be able to do this...

Interviewing those who are hurting or in #trauma.
It's our job as #journalists - but do we always get it right? And what happens when we don't?

Well, this is oddly mesmeric.

Coming up on #5News:

Team GB make their best ever start to an Olympics,

An inquiry finds that hundreds of children were abused while in care of Lambeth Council,

And Wayne Rooney may be the victim of blackmail.

Join @sianwilliams100 and the team on @channel5_tv from 5pm.

'I have to focus on my mental health. I just think mental health is more prevalent in sports right now'.

'We have to protect our minds and our bodies and not just go out and do what the world wants us to do'.

Breaking News: Simone Biles said she withdrew from the women’s gymnastics team final because she wasn’t in a good place mentally to compete after so much pressure to win. It is not clear whether she will compete in her individual events.

This will be a fab 10th birthday party.
@DalaiLama and @andypuddicombe of @Headspace will be there and you'll leave with a metaphorical goodie bag full of lovely things.
7pm GMT Weds 28th. And it's free.

Breaking: #Covid_19 cases fall again to 23,511 - deaths rise to 131.

Team GB's Charlotte Dujardin, Carl Hester and Charlotte Fry just won bronze in the team dressage #ToykoOlympics

Wore new gift up to London, but annoyingly, forgot the bike…

What an extraordinary journey @TomDaley1994 has had. 1st Olympics at 14 - #Toyko2020 at 27 - in the interim loses his Dad, becomes a father and a husband…

🎉 Our friends at @actionhappiness are celebrating 10 years of working towards improving #happiness and #wellbeing 🎉

Sign up below for a discussion with the @DalaiLama, @RichardLayard, @andypuddicombe (@Headspace), @sianwilliams100 and @markwilliamson 🙌

💭 We asked you how you were feeling about #Covid19 restrictions easing on Instagram. Here are some of your responses.

Not everyone will be happy about #FreedomDay. If you need support today, we’re here for you 👉

Scenes that will electrify some, and terrify others.

#FreedomDay is no half-hearted step. This was Heaven nightclub at midnight via @benjaminbutter.

For nearly four million people, tomorrow is not ‘Freedom Day’
Don’t force them back inside. Please wear a mask.
Cancer patients’ plea to public: keep observing Covid measures