This is for Dame Deborah F***ing James! Lauren Mahon pays tribute as her cancer podcast wins top award

Lauren Mahon has paid tribute to her late pal Dame Deborah James after the podcast they hosted together, alongside Rachael Bland, scooped up the Champion Award at the British Podcast Awards on Saturday 22 July.

Dame Deborah, Rachael and Lauren started the podcast together back in 2018 as former cancer patients. There, they would discuss everything from navigating life with the disease, treatment and more.

Rachael passed away at the age of 40 the same year they started the podcast, and Deborah died on 28 June 2022 following some time receiving end-of-life care for bowel cancer.

Surviving host Lauren, 37, paid tribute to her late friends after You, Me and the Big C received the award during the event at London's Kennington Park.

“Me and Deb had a little joke when Rachael died that I couldn’t just do the podcast by myself because I couldn’t call it ‘Me, Me and the Big C’," she started her speech.

Lauren continued: "The podcast is our happy place. It’s a bit surreal to be standing here without both my girls. We knew this was a risk, that some of us would die when we started it, but we wanted to continue to champion it.

"There is more work to be done. I don’t know what it looks like, but the podcast has always been a service."

She added: "Last time we won at these awards, we dedicated the award to Rachael.

"I’m so proud to say that this is for Dame Deborah F**king James!”

The award comes just days after Deborah's funeral took place in St. Mary's Church in Barnes, where her family and close friends, including Lorraine Kelly, mourned her passing.

The coffin of Deborah was driven to the church in a vintage Rolls-Royce hearse as more than a dozen members of her family walked in procession behind.

The church bells chimed at 12.30pm ahead of the intimate service, which began at 1pm with readings and music from relatives.

During the ceremony, poems were read by both her children, Hugo, 14, and Eloise, 12, while her husband Sebastien delivered the eulogy.

And to honour the late star's wishes, Jazz singer Natalie Rushdie sang 'Tell Me It's Not True' from the musical Blood Brothers.

Following the service, a private wake was held and the guests departed the church with bowed heads while Dame Deborah's coffin was carried away.


  • Deborah James' podcast co-host Lauren Mahon says her death 'hasn't really hit'

  • Dame Deborah James' touching last moments with her family shared

  • ‘Dame Deborah found a way to dance through the darkness – there is hope for us all’

  • BBC viewers left in tears over heartbreaking Dame Deborah James documentary after her death

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