The tragic story of James Pratt and John Smith, the last men to be hanged in Britain for homosexuality, is to be serialised in a new podcast by the Daily Mail
Hosted by Labour MP Sir Chris Bryant over three episodes, ‘The Tragedy of James and John‘ is the first part of ‘Lost Voices’, a series dedicated to stories that should never have happened.
In an unflinching and deeply moving account, Chris draws from a wealth of archive material including poor law records, workhouse registers and private correspondence to tell the story of what it meant to be gay, working-class men in early 19th-century Britain through the lens of a landmark trial.
Sir Chris Bryant, said: “This is a story that will stir your heart. A tale of prejudice and judicial murder.”
dmg media head of podcasts Jamie East said: “Chris tells this tragic story with such verve and empathy. This may not be what you expect from the Daily Mail but we are extremely proud to elevate this awful miscarriage of justice.”
From the team that created the smash-hit podcast series The Trial, Lost Voices – The Tragedy of James and John takes listeners back to London in 1835 and the societal pressures, hang-ups and outrageous hypocrisy that led to two working class gay men being executed by the state.
Episode one is out now and sees both men meet in William Bonell’s rooms in South London. But someone’s looking in on them and 19th-century Britain’s unique obsession with homosexuality will leave a dark and terrible stain on our nation’s legal history.
Check out the first episode on Spotify here.