by Tony Gallagher

Arthur's Heroes Podcast

You are all heroes! So the world needs to hear your voices. Our inspirational blogger Jess has been talking to lots of amazing people about their journeys with arthritis. And we've made their funny, moving, uplifting conversations into a brilliant podcast.

If you subscribe to Arthur's Heroes on your podcast provider, you'll never miss an episode! You can also download the episodes to your phone or computer by clicking on the images below. We would like to thank Novartis UK for their support in the production of Series One of this podcast.

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Episode 17 – Sarah

In this 17th episode Jess talks to our first international guest.. Sarah is a music student and trumpeter from Canada.

They discuss the challenge of being a musician who is diagnosed with arthritis and how Sarah showed the resilience to continue even when it looked like it would be impossible to carry on playing her beloved jazz trumpet. They also discuss her experience of being a student during the pandemic and how she came out of that more determined than ever to achieve her musical goals.

Episode 16 – Peter

In this 16th episode of Arthur’s Heroes Jess meets Peter who has blown away the stereotype of a person with arthritis by having a successful career racing motor cycles in national level competitions.

Peter started riding at the age of 16 and despite numerous setbacks, including major accidents and a diagnosis of ankylosing spondylitis, has turned his love of racing into a career. They discuss the huge reserves of resilience that Peter has drawn upon as well as the people who have helped along the way..

Episode 15 – Lucy

In this 15th episode of Arthur’s Heroes Jess meets Lucy to discuss the challenges and pleasures of being a new parent who has been diagnosed with arthritis.

Lucy already had two children when she received her diagnosis and had a very busy life working part-time as well as bringing up her children. When Lucy found out, very unexpectedly, that she was expecting her third child she realised that she would have to approach parenting in a very different way. She talks to Jess about re-defining her role as a mum and how Project Mum, the Arthur’s Place wellness kit helped.

Episode 14 – Jamie

In this 13th episode of Arthur’s Heroes, Jess meets Jamie who has shown great resilience since his diagnosis and channelled it into a force for good for the community.

He has worked towards helping arthritis sufferers develop a more positive mindset by setting up Yoga for AS. This organisation helps people who have been diagnosed with arthritis to not only increase their physical flexibility, but to develop a positive mental approach to life through the power of yoga.

Episode 13 – Ellen

In this 13th episode of Arthur’s Heroes, Jess meets Ellen, whose latest Instagram project @flareupandcumming offers the chronic illness community a platform to explore sex and intimacy.

As a YouTuber and blogger, Ellen has shared her life as a young adult with psoriatic arthritis, alopecia areata and uveitis for 10 years. It’s given her a remarkable ability to embrace her body’s differences and a passion for challenging perceptions of beauty by looking past disability.

Now, she’s daring to ask the personal questions you might not want to discuss with your doctor, so you don’t have to.

Episode 12 – Kate

In this 12th episode of Arthur’s Heroes, Jess talks to Kate, founder of the Wren Project, which provides free one-to-one listening support to people newly diagnosed with autoimmune diseases.

Despite still coming to terms with her own diagnoses – including RA and Lupus, Kate’s relentless commitment to making the world a better place through human connection is inspirational.

Driven in part by her previous work in getting people through emotional experiences, Kate explains the charity’s origins, its aim to empower people to feel less lonely, and tells listeners how to get involved. Kate also shares what she’s learned about herself along the way. To hear why she finds comfort in selflessly helping others, listen now.

Episode 11 – Jack

In this 11th episode of Arthur’s Heroes, Jess meets Jack, a 24-year-old blogger, poet and former competitive trampolinist, who was diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis aged 19. 

Jack recently blogged for Arthur’s Place about his participation in a drug trial which changed his life dramatically for the better, but which ended abruptly when the pandemic hit, leaving him despondent and despairing. Jack shares the ups and downs of his trial experience with Jess, including how his sheer determination led to a positive outcome.

A self-confessed child of musical theatre, who to this day still bursts into random song, Jack loves the theatre, listens to loads of podcasts and joined our book club with The House at Pooh Corner as his happy book.

No Introductions Needed is Jack’s personal blog
Find Jack on Instagram at @Jackposnett, and for poetry at @jackchats.

Episode 10 – Molly

In this tenth episode of Arthur’s Heroes, Jess meets self-described “crafter, nerd and adrenaline junkie” Molly, who was diagnosed with JIA aged 13. 

Molly’s pursuits include bungee jumping and climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, the world’s highest freestanding mountain. “I like to try to prove people wrong in life,” she says. “Anything that people think someone with arthritis wouldn’t, couldn’t or shouldn’t do, I think, ‘hmm really?’”

More recently, as a trainee nurse, Molly witnessed an ankle fusion surgery performed by the same surgeon that carried out an ankle fusion operation on her. This is one courageous woman.

Episode 9 – Zoë

In this ninth episode of Arthur’s Heroes, Jess discovers 25-year-old English teacher Zoë’s secret to managing a busy, full-time job alongside fibromyalgia and joint hypermobility syndrome. 

From what and when to tell your boss to asking for support, Zoë talks about how she handles those tricky situations that inevitably crop up when you have a chronic illness and a demanding job.

For a lesson in succeeding at work, whatever you do for a living, while still finding time for yourself, listen now.

Episode 8 – Sophie, Jenny, Hannah and Vicky

In this eighth episode – Jess meets the rest of the new crew who create Arthur’s Place Live events, Arthur’s Place TV videos, our web stories and social content.

Sophie, Jenny, Hannah and Vicky talk about the power of storytelling, its value for young people with arthritis, and how new ways of connecting people can bring our community together.

Jess also learns about the team’s own experiences and inspiration behind exciting future plans.

Episode 7 – Jen, Michelle and Emma

 In this seventh episode – the first of a two-parter, Jess goes behind-the-scenes with some of the new recruits to the Arthur’s Place team.

Up first are lead coordinator Jen, storyteller Michelle, and community love spreader Emma, who explain how their own arthritis diagnoses are being used in a positive way to generate meaningful, fresh content for our audience.

They also share ideas on how people interested in contributing can get involved. Is this you? We’d love to hear from you!

Episode 6 – Leigh

 In this sixth episode, Jess talks to Leigh, who took up archery as a hobby, to meet new people and have some fun – and ended up competing at the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

But after the highs of London 2012, there were rule changes and Leigh became declassified as a Para Archer because the authorities were no longer classifying athletes with rheumatoid arthritis. This hasn’t diminished Leigh’s zest for life – and she is now hoping to set up an Arthritis Games one day!

Episode 5 – Liam

 In this fifth episode, Jess chats to Liam about living with his girlfriend, Lauren, who has arthritis.

Liam talks about what it’s like to live with and love someone with arthritis, and how they face their challenges together. Recently, Liam has been making a film about young people with arthritis, to help raise awareness.

If you want to know more why not check out Liam’s film, Invisible Illnesses – Juvenile Arthritis?


Episode 4 – Anna


In this fourth episode, Jess chats to Anna about what it’s like to be friends with someone who has arthritis.

Anna has been friends with Jess throughout her battle for a diagnosis, and treatment, and has supported her through it all. She has a great understanding of what friends can do to help – and advice on how to open up to those who are close to you.

Episode 3 – Charlie


In this third episode, Jess chats to Charlie, one of our amazing bloggers on Arthur’s Place, who was diagnosed with arthritis four years ago, when he was 17.

He tells Jess all about how he’s created his own annexe in his parents’ house to give him some independence, and how his positive mindset and love of films and music has helped him through the tough times.

Episode 2 – Niamh

 In Episode 2, Jess chats to Niamh, an amazing young embroidery artist who was diagnosed with arthritis around three years ago. They discuss how she survived living as a Victorian for a month as part of a BBC TV show, how she manages her arthritis and her work, and how she’s become an Instagram star!

If you want to know more why not check out Niamh’s website, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter


Episode 1 – Andrea

 In this episode Jess talks to Andrea McBride, the rheumatology nurse who founded Arthur’s Place, the website and online community for young people with arthritis. They discuss what inspired Andrea to create Arthur’s Place, how the community has grown, and how it supports young people with arthritis all around the world. They also talk about Codeword Pineapple, a campaign started by Jess to make it easier for young people with invisible disabilities to make friends and colleagues aware of when they need support.


Arthur’s Heroes is the inspirational new podcast from Arthur’s Place, a vibrant website and online community for young people with arthritis.

 This podcast stars your host Jess, a 23-year old Arthur’s Place member, who will shine a light on the lives lived by young people with arthritis – everyday heroes who are living rich and full lives despite their diagnoses.


We are all made of stories

Anyone with a story to tell that’s related to life with arthritis is welcome to be a guest on one of our podcasts.

If you would like to find out more or take part, email us at [email protected]. Go for it; you’re awesome!