Ashley John-Baptiste

Ashley John-Baptiste takes the temperature in Russia

It was late March when BBC Newsgathering offered me a lifetime opportunity – to report from Russia during the World Cup. My response? Heck, yes! It was a no-brainer. 

Only hours after the initial buzz faded and I had spoken with mates did concerns arise.

Would I experience racial abuse in Russia? Would I be able to hack the cultural and language barriers while consistently providing quality reports? I knew without a doubt that this would be a step up from the domestic reporting that I was used to. 

Ashley John-Baptiste: Giving a voice to the voiceless

"Working on Grenfell was… oh gosh, how do I even articulate that?” asks Ashley John-Baptiste, the 28-year-old reporter who led the coverage of the tower block fire and its devastating aftermath for BBC Two’s Victoria Derbyshire programme last summer. “It was hard to switch off,” he admits.

Originally dispatched to west London to find residents who would speak to Victoria Derbyshire live on the programme, he revisited the area multiple times, meeting survivors and building a rapport with the community.

Meet...Ashley John-Baptiste

Ashley had his first experience in front of the camera as an X Factor finalist with boy band The Risk shortly after graduating from Cambridge University.

After leaving the music show during the live finals, he was asked to front a documentary on life in the care system and his own experiences in care. It was this experience working on the BBC Three documentary that sparked his ambition to become a journalist.