Tanya Byron

Professor Tanya Byron took her undergraduate degree in Psychology at York University, and went on to gain a Masters degree at University College London and a Doctorate at Surrey University for research on drug addiction undertaken at University College Hospital.

Subsequently, she was a Senior Clinical Psychologist specialising in working with children and adolescents in University College and Middlesex Hospitals, and a Consultant Clinical Psychologist specialising in working with children and adolescents in Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire. Up to 2003 she ran a national NHS beacon-awarded training programme for NHS and Social Care staff on Managing Aggression and Violence in the Professional context.

Tanya’s career has developed in a number of important directions: as a public speaker, and most notably as a writer and broadcaster. Her involvement as a presenter and on-screen expert in the BBC television series ‘Little Angels’ (2003-05), ‘Teen Angels’ (2005), ‘The House of Tiny Tearaways’ (2005-06); and ‘Bedtime Live’ (C4, 2013) gave national audiences an appreciation of issues around exploring and treating children’s emotional, psychological and behaviour problems. She has been nominated for a Bafta, an RTS and has been awarded the Sony Gold Award for ‘Face to Face’ (R4, 2012).

Tanya writes weekly for The Times and monthly in Good Housekeeping. On BBC Radio 4 she is a presenter and contributor to a range of programmes, and, collaborating with Jennifer Saunders, she co-wrote the popular BBC comedy series The Life and Times of Vivienne Vyle; they now write regularly together.

As a writer, Tanya has published widely. In addition to books linked to the television series listed above, her publications include Your Child, Your Way (Penguin, 2007). Most recently, she was commissioned by the then Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, to undertake an independent review into the potentially harmful effects of the internet and video games children resulting in The Byron Review: Safer children in a digital world which was published in March 2008 and its follow-up review Do we have safer children in a digital world? (2010). The review was well-received by the government and the wider public both nationally and internationally, and has led to a number of policy changes.

Tanya advises on international policy relating to children, young people, mental health and education, and is currently working in China to develop services for children, young people and their families.

Awarded Honorary Doctorates by the University of York and the Open University for her ‘outstanding and exceptional contribution to science, education and culture’, Tanya is also Professor of Psychology at Shangdong University (China); Honorary Lecturer at UCL and UEL and Chancellor of Edgehill University.

Tanya is a Fellow of the RSA, President of the teenage mental health charity Mindfull and Patron of Prospex, an inner-London based charity supporting vulnerable and abused teenagers. Tanya is also patron of Relate, and an ambassador of The National Family and Parenting Institute. She speaks regularly across government and advises ministers at the Department for Education and continues to practise as a Consultant Clinical Psychologist specialising in working with children and adolescents two days per week.

Married to actor, Bruce Byron, and with two teenage children, Lily and Jack, Tanya’s work is grounded by her family and friends and the time they share together, and also her garden.


The Skeleton Cupboard

The Skeleton Cupboard

Pan Macmillan, 2014