Vera Lynn

Ditchling, Sussex.


Cole tells the story of an encounter with a real legend: Dame Vera Lynn, giving her last major interview at the age of 97. The Forces Sweetheart, an inspiration to so many during the Second World War, even sang to him.

This intimate, compelling tale starts with a grandmother and her grandson in the East End during the Seventies, as she sings a song remembered from her own childhood. Fast forward to the present day and the little boy is Cole Moreton, on his way to meet the song’s original singer, who reminds him so much of his Nan.

Dame Vera treats her visitor to lemon drizzle cake and tea and tells tales of the old days, including the time she saved a man’s life during the Blitz. Then there is her jaw-dropping description of performing for ‘the boys’ in the jungles of Burma, very close to the frontline, accompanied by only a pianist and a pistol. Dame Vera reveals why she had horrors to face while others were celebrating VE Day. And Cole reflects on the way her most famous number We’ll Meet Again changed in meaning over the years.

This stirring song helped people get through wartime, but then, as the years went by, We’ll Meet Again became an expression of something deeper, older, even ancient – the idea of being reunited with our loved ones in heaven or the afterlife. And in a late surprise, We’ll Meet Again became one of the songs of the Covid pandemic, as people dreamed of seeing each other once more, face to face in safety.

Once more Dame Vera sang on behalf of us all. No wonder she was once voted among the greatest Britons of all time.

Cole Moreton examines her life and legacy in another first-person, beautifully told short story in this series reflecting on meetings with extraordinary humans and what we can learn from them about how to live.

Can We Talk? is based on the belief that we are better when we share our stories, so explores our human desire to connect with each other, with ourselves and with the divine, if we believe in that.

This is podcasting as an art form, for all those interested in human connection, spirituality and better living, as well as storytelling, interviewing and fascinating tales. Imagine David Sedaris meets Richard Rohr…

Acclaim for Can We Talk?

‘Cole proves in this series how we all need stories in our lives. Proper stories. Well told. In a world of clips and clicks ad shortening attention spans, this hits just the right spot’

Fi Glover, co-host of Fortunately … With Fi and Jane

‘A brilliant, sensitive storyteller, Coe Moreton produces perfectly formed mini epics that are both thought-provoking and hugely entertaining’

Bestselling author and broadcaster Anita Anand

Cole Moreton writes for national newspapers, makes programmes for BBC Radio 4 and is a regular contributor to Pause For Thought on Zoe Ball’s Radio 2 breakfast show. A former Interviewer of the Year at the Press Awards, he has won gold at the Arias, the radio industry Oscars.

As an author his debut Hungry for Home was shortlisted for the prestigious John Llewellyn Rhys Prize for a first book in any genre, alongside White Teeth by Zadie Smith.

Cole would love to hear from you so please do get in touch to tell him what you think of these stories and share your own encounters with remarkable people.

And you can pre-order Cole’s new book which accompanies the podcast, out in May 2023:

Produced by Emily Jeffery with sound magic by Andy Partington.

Thank you to Andy Lyon and all the team at Hodder Faith.

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