Advertisement
News

Clive Myrie: ‘I’ve been in some dangerous situations, but I don’t think I ever thought about the danger’

As BBC news journalist Clive Myrie reports from Ukraine, he explains his passion for frontline reporting in a new interview

BBC news anchor Clive Myrie, currently reporting from Kyiv on the Russian invasion of Ukraine, has told The Big Issue of his passion for reporting from the frontline in a new interview.

“You see the very best of human nature and the very worst of human nature in a conflict situation,” Myrie tells The Big Issue’s Jane Graham.

“Those are the best, most fascinating moments, when you’re going to get the most interesting human stories.”

Myrie reported from more than 80 countries during a long spell as a BBC foreign correspondent. This included spells in Tokyo, Paris and Los Angeles, as well as reporting from Iraq during the 2003 war.

“There is an adrenaline rush in being a journalist on the frontline. Something that makes you want to go back for more,” says Myrie in a wide-ranging Letter To My Younger Self interview.

“Although for me I don’t think it’s the sense that I’m potentially in danger. It’s just about telling stories from incredible places.”

Advertisement
Advertisement
Subscribe to The Big Issue

From just £3 per week

Take a print or digital subscription to The Big Issue and provide a critical lifeline to our work. With each subscription we invest every penny back into supporting the network of sellers across the UK. A subscription also means you'll never miss the weekly editions of an award-winning publication, with each issue featuring the leading voices on life, culture, politics and social activism.

This week, Myrie was back in his flak jacket as he presented the news from Ukraine as air raid sirens blared out across Kyiv.

“I’ve been in some dangerous situations, but I don’t think I ever thought about the danger,” says Myrie.

“I just thought, I want to be in a warzone and experience and tell the story of conflict in a particular place.

“It’s interesting talking to soldiers, and to those who do go into battle. You never ever think, really consciously, that you’re going to be the one who gets shot or blown up or killed. Something has to present itself to you that makes it clear that you could be the one.

“So for instance, when I was embedded with the Royal Marines going into Iraq in 2003, we all had to write goodbye letters to our families, a sort of last will and testament I suppose. Just in case we didn’t come back. That process, saying goodbye in letter form, does remind you that you might not get back.”

Support The Big Issue

Give your local vendor a hand up and buy the magazine

Each of our vendors buy their copies of the mag for £1.50 each, selling them for £3 and keeping the difference. Visit our interactive map to find your nearest vendor.

Since 2009, Myrie has worked primarily as a newsreader in the BBC’s London studio. And, more recently, he has taken over as host of the BBC’s flagship quiz show, Mastermind.

It was a tough decision, however, to step back from frontline reporting.

“I didn’t want to come off the road as a reporter and sit in a studio and read out loud,” he admits.

“It was the BBC that said, we think it would be a good thing for you to do. And I was like, ‘hmmm, I don’t know about that’. In the end I agreed.

“I thought I would miss jumping onto planes every week and I think maybe at the beginning I did. But I don’t miss it now at all. I think after more than 30 years of being a foreign correspondent I’ve finally got it out of my system.”

Read the full interview in The Big Issue magazine on sale from Monday 28 February.

Advertisement

Support your local vendor

Want to buy a copy of the magazine? We have over 1,200 Big Issue vendors in the UK. Each vendor buys a copy of the mag for £1.50 and sells it for £3, keeping the difference. Visit our interactive map to find your nearest vendor and support them today!

Recommended for you

Read All
Michael Gove vows to get tough with social housing landlords in warning over horror homes
Social Housing

Michael Gove vows to get tough with social housing landlords in warning over horror homes

Shell consultant quits with explosive LinkedIn post accusing oil giant of 'extreme harms' to planet
Oil industry

Shell consultant quits with explosive LinkedIn post accusing oil giant of 'extreme harms' to planet

A man who built a wooden house on a London pavement has now been given a place to stay
Homelessness

A man who built a wooden house on a London pavement has now been given a place to stay

How you can help boost bee and butterfly populations with a new government app
Biodiversity

How you can help boost bee and butterfly populations with a new government app

Most Popular

Read All
Homeless man who built wooden house on pavement: 'People understand I'm just in a bad situation'
1.

Homeless man who built wooden house on pavement: 'People understand I'm just in a bad situation'

The remarkable rise of Ncuti Gatwa: From sofa surfing and Sex Education to Doctor Who
2.

The remarkable rise of Ncuti Gatwa: From sofa surfing and Sex Education to Doctor Who

Exclusive: The UK's rarest and most threatened wildlife sites are not being protected properly
3.

Exclusive: The UK's rarest and most threatened wildlife sites are not being protected properly

Martin Lewis: 'The link between money problems and mental health problems is just so strong'
4.

Martin Lewis: 'The link between money problems and mental health problems is just so strong'

Keep up to date with The Big Issue. The leading voice on life, politics, culture and social activism direct to your inbox.