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Our man at the Beeb

Will Young and Chris Sweeney, co-hosts of the Homo Sapiens podcast, meet Ben Hunte, BBC News’ first LGBT correspondent

Will and I first met Ben Hunte when he covered our podcast Homo Sapiens for the BBC. The podcast is our pride and joy, the favourite child of our jobs. It really started because Will and I are mates and we felt there was no space out there to hear queer people chatting about every-day life in the way women can on shows such as Woman’s Hour or Loose Women. It received a great reception and has grown to be an inclusive and diverse space where we have chatted to incredible people from transgender rodeo queens to Sam Smith and Troye Sivan.

I’ll confess that the first time we met Ben, neither of us knew he was gay for most of the interview.

I suppose we are so used to assuming that when it comes to news, it’s usually told from a straight man’s angle.

So his being the first BBC News LGBT correspondent — the vanguard of creating a space for LGBTQ people in mainstream news and media — feels like an incredible achievement.

All three of us feel strongly that more space is needed in the mainstream for diverse lives, not just ours but anyone’s in the wonderful spectrum that is being queer.

Ben, 27, is incredibly funny and warm and he exudes positivity. He does something that all really clever people do: he questions everything that we assume to be fact, from the realities of LGBTQ racism to what his role as an LGBT correspondent means.

And if any of you follow him on Instagram, you will see that he can certainly lift a weight or two in the gym. I’m normally eating a croissant while I watch him bench press.

Our chat with him was an absolute joy and we covered everything from why we’re all too woke these days to why “Barbara in Northampton” is always on his mind.

Will: You could be the new Alan Whicker, who in the 1970s would be standing there saying, “And this is apparently called an orgy.” That could be you, “And this is a chemsex party.”

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About Attitude

The 25th anniversary issue! With Colton Haynes on his drug and drink addiction, BBC News LGBT reporter Ben Hunte, Roger The Alien, The OA’s Ian Alexander + more.