Jewish Mum of The Year

TV News London’s media trainer Jon Kaye (ABOVE RIGHT) features in Channel 4's series Jewish Mum of the Year.  Jon chaired a radio phone-in with the  finalists, Sandi Firth, (LEFT) mother of two from Leeds, and Jacqueline Curzon, an Orthodox mother of six from Edgware, North London. The two were  answering listeners' questions to see which of them could win the prize of becoming an agony aunt for the weekly newspaper Jewish News.   

The Channel 4 series set a series of challenges for eight Jewish mothers including matchmaking, running a coach trip for pensioners,  organising a bar mitzvah and cooking and hosting a Friday night dinner.  The judges were former EastEnders actress, Tracy-Ann Oberman,  herself a multitasking Jewish mum, and Dovid Katz, a Yiddish scholar.

As well as the radio phone-in, the final episode of the series also featured the two remaining mums hosting a traditional Friday night dinner for a party of 16, including family, judges, the other mums, and celebrities including David Baddiel and Jay Rayner. 

The winner of the title of Jewish Mum of the was 65 year old Sandi Firth, a glamorous granny, twice divorced and the oldest mum in the competition.  “This is for all Jewish mums”.  she said when handed her trophy.

For more info about Jewish Mum of the Year and to view episodes see -

Jon Kaye presents Sunday Jewish Radio on Spectrum Radio on Sundays at 12noon on 558AM and DAB Digital Radio. The programme is also online throughout the week - and deals with topical issues, celebrities and theological discussions.

Published 13 November 2012


When Roz met Beryl and Sandi - Women of the Year Lunch 2012

TV News London’s Managing Director, Roz Morris was proud to attend this year’s Women of the Year Lunch at the InterContinental Hotel London Park Lane.   Roz is on the Women of the Year Lunch Nominating Council and has previously led the PR campaign and served as a director on the board of Women of the Year Lunch. 

Every year since it was founded more than 50 years go every one of the 400 guests at the lunch is recognised as a ‘Woman of the Year’, and is celebrated for their achievements and contribution to society. This year the Lunch started with a song from the Military Wives Choir and included appearances by Dame Helen Mirren, P.D.James, Sandi Toksvig, and Lorraine Kelly, as well as many of  Britain’s female Olympic and Paralympic medal winners. These included Katherine Grainger, Rebecca Adlington, Beth Tweddle, and Christine Ohuruogu.

Among the extraordinary women who attended this year was Beryl Renwick, 86,  who until recently broadcast as a star of the weekly Beryl and Betty Show on BBC Radio Humberside. They won a Sony Radio Award earlier this year and although Betty, who is 90, was not able to make the trip from Hull, Beryl travelled down by train with her neighbour Audrey as her companion and was thrilled to have a weekend in London culminating in the Women of the Year Lunch. "I’m so thrilled to be here and it’s a wonderful occasion" she said. 

Beryl was nominated by Roz Morris as one of her guests and sat at her table at the Lunch. She is pictured above (left) with Sandi Toksvig (centre)  and Roz.  Also at Roz’s table were Nikki King, CEO of Isuzu Trucks UK, June Walter, Deputy Editor of Good Housekeeping magazine and Carole and Sara Hughes founders of the charity Anna’s Hope.

“This was a truly outstanding event “ Roz says. “The breadth of women’s achievement is truly amazing. So many women are doing so many good things. They make us al feel humble because they don’t just talk– they get on and  do things which are outstanding in all fields.”

The Women of the Year Lunch was founded in 1955 by the late Tony Lothian OBE, Odette Hallowes & Lady Georgina Coleridge to celebrate women’s achievements and an environment in which women might meet and network. This year’s ceremony on October 22 was hosted by Sandi Toksvig and the awards were presented by actress Dame Helen Mirren DBE, singer and actress Beverley Knight, broadcasters Sue MacGregor and Lorraine Kelly and the Rt Hon Tessa Jowell MP.

Familiar faces amongst the attendees, also included Dame Mary Archer, Kathy Lette, Maureen Lipman, and Fifty Shades of Grey author, E L James.

Five awards were presented to exceptional women who have each proved an inspiration to others through their courage, selflessness, dedication and achievement.

The 2012 Women of the Year Award winners are:

• Barclays Women of the Year Award: The Iraqi-American women’s rights activist, author and co-founder of Women for Women International Zainab Salbi

• Good Housekeeping Women of the Year Award: Team GB Olympic & Paralympic Women Medallists

• Sacla’ Women of the Year Lifetime Achievement Award: Best-selling crime writer & Life Peer P.D. James

• Women of the Year Award: Campaigner for justice, following the murder of her son Stephen in 1993, Doreen Lawrence

• ITV1’s Lorraine Inspirational Woman of the Year Award was been won (on a viewers’ vote) by: Kate Woolveridge who has been recognised for her tireless work to promote awareness of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia in Cardiff through her work with the “Forget me nots choir”

Baroness Helena Kennedy QC, President of the Women of the Year, said: “The magic of this event – and what makes it unique – is the way in which it brings together the most fabulous women from the widest range of geographical, social, ethnic and political backgrounds; from the very well-known to unsung heroines doing outstanding work in their community.

“Our special winners today embody this: from P.D. James, the best-selling crime writer, to women’s rights activist and author, Zainab Salbi, and from the brilliant Team GB Olympic and Paralympic women medallists to Doreen Lawrence, who has campaigned tirelessly for the victims of racist crime and reform of the police service.

“Their achievements, dedication and passion are an inspiration to women everywhere, encouraging us all to fulfil our ambitions, support others and stand up for what we believe in.”

Clare Blampied, Managing Director of Sacla’ UK, presented the Award and said, “Lady James is an inspirational winner for Sacla’, loved by generations for her wonderful books written over the past 50 years and for her amazing energy, passion and enthusiasm for everything she tackles. Her impressive career is motivating, if a little daunting for us all! ”

Lindsay Nicholson, Editorial Director, Good Housekeeping, said of Team GB’s Olympic & Paralympic Women Medallists:

“London 2012 was – undeniably – the women’s Olympics. Our incredible Olympians and Paralympians broke new records and won more medals than ever before. But, for me, most importantly they sent out a message to all young women that there is so much more to aspire to physically than being Size Zero.”

Olympian and Paralympian athletes at the Women of the Year Lunch included Katherine Grainger, Rebecca Adlington, Beth Tweddle, Zoe Newson, Samantha Murray, Christine Ohuruogu, and Sarah Storey.

In presenting Doreen Lawrence with her award Beverley Knight said, “It is a joy to present such a quietly courageous, determined and humble woman, as Doreen certainly is, with an award. I have admired her for years, the grace with which she has dealt with injustice after cruel injustice on both sides of the law to eventually see some resolution. She is the embodiment of the saying “never give up”.”

The winners were selected by a judging panel. President and Chair of Women of the Year, Baroness Kennedy and Teresa Graham, were joined by a terrific line-up of judges from across a wide variety of sectors including: Camila Batmanghelidjh, Chief Executive, Kids Company; Melanie Dawes, Director General of the Economic & Domestic Affairs Secretariat at the Cabinet Office; Ronke Phillips, ITV London correspondent and Jasvinder Sanghera, CEO & Founder of Karma Nirvana, a support group for victims of honour violence.

The 2012 Women of the Year Lunch was sponsored by Barclays, Good Housekeeping, Sacla’ and ITV1’s Lorraine.





For more information see the Women of the Year website

Published 11 November 2012