BBC radio presenter Bland in ‘race against time’ to publish memoir

BBC radio presenter Bland in ‘race against time’ to publish memoir

BBC Radio 5 Live presenter Rachael Bland, who has incurable cancer, is in a "race against time" to publish a memoir for her two-year-old son, Freddie.

Writing in the Telegraph, 40-year-old Bland said she wanted her son to “know the kind of person I am”.

“It contains all the stories and the advice that I would have given Fred over the years, but won’t be around to do in person. I hope he will come back to it through his life and it will resonate in different ways at different stages. Writing it has made me laugh, smile and cry in equal measure.

“I’ve spoken to friends who lost their mothers at a young age and they say they would have treasured this kind of information, and I hope Freddie will see it as the ultimate gift of my love as it is intended.”

The presenter, who is represented by HHB Agency, said she has less than a year left to live and would really like to see the book published before she dies.

Bland, who also hosts the "You, Me and the Big C" podcast, was diagnosed with breast cancer in November 2016 after finding a lump under her arm. In May of this year, she was told the cancer was incurable. Her cancer is metastatic, which no-one survives long-term. She said: "I’m not scared of dying. I only fear for those I leave behind. For my darling Freddie, who’ll be three next month, for Steve and our families. Even now, knowing the “no options left” conversation is coming, I can’t crumble and fall to pieces. 

"I have to suppress a lot of the darkest thoughts about Freddie growing up without his mummy around. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t be able to enjoy the precious times we have left together."

Picture book author Michelle Robinson is helping Lisa Wells, who has also been diagnosed with terminal cancer, publish a book about the death of a parent. Robinson said: “The #OnlyOneOfMe team are totally behind Rachael in her search for a publisher for her own memoir. We have Graffeg Books to thank for making Lisa Wells’s book possible. Books like this are absolutely needed, as the flood of support for OOOM has shown. Go, Rachael!”