Lakin McCarthy

Lakin McCarthy


Polly Toynbee and David Walker

Journalist, Political Commentator, Co-author


Polly Toynbee and David Walker

Polly Toynbee is one of the most influential columnists in the UK and has been a political and social commentator for the Guardian since 1998. She was named Political Journalist of The Year in 2003 and Columnist of the Year at the 2007 British Press Awards. In 2008 she topped a poll of 100 opinion makers, carried out by Editorial Intelligence.

Her jobs have included BBC TV social affairs editor, columnist and associate editor of the Independent, co-editor of the Washington Monthly USA and reporter and feature writer for the Observer and the Radio Times.

She has written several books including Hard Work: Life in Low-Pay Britain (2003), Lost Children: Story of Adopted Children Searching for Their Mothers (1985).

With David Walker she has co-authored Unjust Rewards: Exposing Greed and Inequality in Britain Today (2008), The Verdict - Did Labour Change Britain? (2010), and Cameron's Coup: How The Tories Took Britain to the Brink (2015).

Appointed President of the British Humanist Association in July 2007, she has served as the BHA's Vice President since 2012.


David Walker is an authority in UK public policy. He is a journalist, broadcaster and author. He edits the Guardian’s monthly magazine Public and has written for The Independent, The Times and The Economist.

A regular presenter of BBC Radio 4’s Analysis programme, David Walker is a well-known commentator on public affairs and a former local government correspondent.

His books include: (with Polly Toynbee) Did Things Get Better? An Audit of Labour's Successes and Failures; Better or Worse? Did Labour Deliver? and Cameron's Coup: How The Tories Took Britain to the Brink (2015).

He is a council member at the Economic and Social Research Council, a non-executive director of the National Centre for Social Research, an honorary member of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy and a trustee of the Nuffield Trust.