Former Woman’s Hour host Dame Jenni Murray has opened up about her decision to take her clothes off on television for The Real Full Monty On Ice.
Dame Jenni will strip to her underwear on the ITV show to raise awareness of the importance of checking for cancer.
The 70-year-old has had breast cancer herself, resulting in a mastectomy in 2007.
After talking about it for years on the Radio 4 programme, she said it was time to “put my money where my mouth is”.
Dame Jenni told the Radio Times that when her agent first suggested the idea to her, she said: “‘Don’t be ridiculous!… I’m not baring my one remaining breast to the entire nation.’
“And then I thought about it. The Full Monty is probably my favourite film ever. I thought, ‘Come on, Jenni. You’ve been talking about breast cancer for donkey’s years.'”
‘What’s the problem?’
The presenter explained the subject has come up frequently on Woman’s Hour, with listeners regularly being encouraged to check their breasts.
Almost one million women in the UK have missed vital breast screening due to coronavirus, a leading charity recently estimated.
Dame Jenni added: “You have to be gung ho about these things. I’ve had two children. I’ve had my hips replaced. I’ve had a mastectomy. I’ve had stomach surgery. I’ve had an operation on my left humerus, which I managed to break six years ago, slipping on a very icy step.
“My body has been exposed and dealt with on numerous occasions, and I can’t see the point of being shy about it. It’s a couple of seconds of taking your bra off. What’s the problem?”
Dame Jenni has been cancer-free for 14 years now, and told the publication she dislikes being termed a “survivor”, preferring “recovered” instead.
Last month, she made her final broadcast as host of the Radio 4 show, after 33 years in the hot seat.
She signed off her tenure by playing Helen Reddy’s feminist anthem, I Am Woman.
The broadcaster thinks her next eyebrow-raising venture will be a challenge – particularly the ice part – but nothing compared to what she has put her body through previously.
Episode one of Emmy-winning show, led by Ashley Banjo and Coleen Nolan, is on ITV on 14 December.
Alongside Dame Jenni, will be actresses Linda Lusardi and Hayley Tamaddon; and Love Island’s Shaunghna Phillips, as well as This Morning’s Dr Zoe.
Baring all for the blokes will be rugby star Gareth Thomas, Love Island’s Chris Hughes, and actor Jamie Lomas; along with singer Jake Quickenden, Diversity’s Perri Kiehly and jockey Bob Champion.