JUSTIN OLIVER WEBB (born Justin Oliver Prouse, 3 January 1961 in
Hampshire ) is a British journalist who has worked for
BBC since 1984. He is a former
North America Editor and the
main co-presenter of
BBC One 's
Breakfast News programme. Since August
2009, he has co-presented the Today programme on
BBC Radio 4 , and
also regularly writes for the
Radio Times .
* 1 Early life
* 2 Broadcasting
* 3 Personal life
* 4 References
* 5 External links
In an article in the
Radio Times in January 2011, Webb revealed that
his natural father was Peter Woods who was formerly a reporter with
Daily Mirror and later became a
BBC newsreader. Woods was married
and Webb's mother, then Gloria Crocombe, was a secretary at the Daily
Mirror and was divorced from her first husband at the time of the
affair with Woods. Webb commented that his mother's split from Woods
may have been as much her doing as his, saying "I do not believe she
was abandoned." Woods provided financially for Webb but saw his son
only once, when he was six months old. Webb took the surname of his
stepfather when his mother remarried in 1964.
Webb grew up in Bath . He was educated at
Sidcot School , a Quaker
Somerset , and the
London School of Economics , where he was
editor of student newspaper
The Beaver .
Webb joined the
BBC as a graduate trainee in 1984 working in Northern
BBC Radio Ulster based in
Belfast . He then worked as a
BBC Radio 4's Today programme, before becoming a foreign
affairs correspondent based in
London and covering news around the
world. He reported on the
Gulf War and the war in Bosnia, the collapse
Soviet Union and the first democratic elections in South Africa
He then became a
BBC News presenter based in
London , and the main
BBC One 's
Breakfast News programme from 1992 to 1997. He
also presented the BBC's One and Six O\'Clock News bulletins and
BBC Radio 4 's
The World Tonight from 1997-1998. From 1998
he spent three years working as the BBC's Europe correspondent based
Brussels . During that time he reported on the workings of the
European Commission and Parliament , the politics surrounding
Britain's decision on whether to join the single currency and the
enlargement on the
European Union .
In 2001, Webb moved to the
United States , as the BBC's chief
Washington correspondent. Much of his time was spent on local
Washington Radio, most notably,
WAMU , a public radio station, on The
Diane Rehm Show . He raised eyebrows within the
BBC in 2006 when, at a
seminar on impartiality, he claimed the corporation was anti-American
and treated the US with "scorn and derision", according it "no moral
weight". He has also presented a Radio 4 series on anti-Americanism.
In December 2007, he became North American Editor for
BBC News, a role
newly created in time for the American presidential election of 2008.
Matt Frei who moved to present the new World News America
bulletin. Since November 2007, Webb has maintained a regularly updated
blog on the
In August 2009, he returned to the UK to replace Edward Stourton on
the Today programme.
In August 2009, Webb returned to the UK with his wife Sarah and their
three children. Whilst in the United States, his son Sam fell ill and
was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes mellitus . As a result, Webb
United States healthcare system first-hand. His son
commonly joins his father in speaking about the disease. In 2012, Webb
joined son Sam at Addenbrooke\'s Hospital in
Cambridge , meeting the
Duchess of Cornwall as she visited the facilities. She later became a
Royal Patron of the Children's charity,
JDRF , a charity which Webb
supports on a regular basis.
Currently Webb lives in
Camberwell . In 2008, his mother, Gloria,
died and he inherited her home in
Bath, Somerset .
* ^ A B C Bingham, John; Singh, Anita (18 January 2011). "BBC\'s
Justin Webb reveals his real father was newsreader Peter Woods".
London: Telegraph Media Group Limited.
* ^ Who's Who 2008
* ^ A B
BBC press release. Website accessed 26 August 2009
* ^ A B "
BBC News - Today host
Justin Webb names his father as
Peter Woods". BBC. 18 January 2011. Retrieved 18 January 2011.
Justin Webb Obituary: Gloria Webb, theguardian.com, 2 October
2006. Still an unnamed "married man" at this point.
* ^ Ben Todd and Ghristian Gysin (18 January 2011). "I\'m the
secret son of 1970s newsreader Peter Woods, reveals BBC\'s Justin
Daily Mail . London. CS1 maint: Uses authors parameter (link )
* ^ "Bath man
Justin Webb reveals hidden identity of his secret
father". Bath Chronicle. 18 January 2011. Retrieved 25 January 2011.
BBC Website accessed 8 February 2008
* ^ The American Expatriate blog. Website accessed 19 November
* ^ Media Guardian article Monday 5 November 2007. Website
accessed 18 November 2007
BBC Website accessed 19 November 2007
* ^ Webb, Justin (5 January 2009). "Health care heartbreak". BBC.
Retrieved 5 January 2009.
* ^ "Radio 4’s Justin Webb. His son has since recovered.".
Southwark Borough Council.