BBC’s Jeremy Bowen gives health update 3 years on from cancer diagnosis | Celebrity News | Showbiz & TV


Jeremy Bowen, 61, revealed he’s “absolutely determined” to look on the bright side of life ever since he was diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2019. The BBC’s Middle East editor once described it as “scarier than being bombed”, but having been in remission for three years post-surgery, he has a new outlook.

In a new interview, the journalist opened up on his diagnosis while stating very clearly he isn’t packing in his job any time soon.

“Anyone who wants to fill my role, I have to disappoint them and say I’m trying to keep going,” he laughed.

“I’m only 61 and, as you get older, you tend to think that experience counts for more. Funny that.”

But his new-found confidence came after he was hit with the news no-one wants to hear.

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“It was a serious tumour,” Jeremy recalled.

“I had a lot of chemotherapy and I’ve been clear since my surgery.”

He went on to reveal he has regular check-ups every six months at the Royal Marsden Hospital.

Jeremy added: “I’m absolutely determined to look on the bright side.

“I have been in violent places where it doesn’t take much and you’re dead, and that feeling has been deepened by having had cancer.

The year of receiving the life-changing health news, the journalist urged others to get tested to avoid “dying of embarrassment”.

He told the NHS expo conference in Manchester: “In 1995 I remember lying in the snow in Grozny in Chechnya wearing my flak jacket and helmet.

“The Russians were bombing the place and buildings were on fire and those planes were going over. I was thinking, ‘Any minute now I’m going to die’.

“Cancer is different — not in a good way. Cancer is insidious.

“It is always somewhere in your mind what those cells may or may not be doing.”

He continued: “If you’re in a dangerous place, you can always get somewhere safer, but if you have cancer, you can’t get anywhere safer.”

Jeremy is a patron of Bowel Cancer UK, which recognises thousands of people “die needlessly every year” because they are “too embarrassed” to get screened.

This type of cancer is the fourth most common in Britain, with around 42,000 cases a year.

But it is the second leading cause of cancer deaths, claiming about 16,000 lives annually.

Jeremy’s full interview is available to read now in Radio Times.



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