Hello! I grew up in London as the daughter of two doctors. My three other siblings also work for the Health Service as doctor and nurses. One has married another doctor. One has married a vet. Fortunately my mother is also a culture vulture. To get away from medical matters both animal and human I followed her encouragement to indulge in museums, theatre, concert halls and galleries. I read English and Drama at Hull University but realised quite quickly after a horrendous experience at the Edinburgh Festival that the actor's life was not for me. I trained as a reporter at the London College of Commuications and went straight into arts television.
I was the BBC's Arts Correspondent from 1994-2004 during which time the Tate Modern opened and the YBA moment came and went. This provoked my first book
The Tastemakers (T&H, 2001) which analysed why contemporary art became so fashionable in the Nineties.
After I left the BBC I have worked for the Sunday Times, The Times, and the Daily Telegraph. I was Arts Editor of the New Statesman for two years, and its theatre critic for three.
In 2009 I took my husband Pip Clothier and 4 children around the French overseas departments on a crazy project which resulted in 6 documentaries for the Travel Channel and a book, Bonnes Vacances (Summersdale, 2011), a comic account of how to go around the world without leaving France.
I live in central London and work at home. We have no car so I ferry the children around on foot. They are all at central London state schools and pretty happy with their lot.