6: A conversation with… Mark Gilman (part 1 of 2)

The first of a two-part conversation with Mark Gilman. Mark has been a major figure in the field over four decades and directly involved in many of the most significant developments we have seen. In this part, we talk about Mark’s early life, his work with the late Geoff Pearson researching heroin use in the North of England, and his pioneering work with Lifeline in the 1980s and 1990s.


About Toby Seddon

Professor of Social Science at UCL. Interested in new ideas and thinking about drug policy.
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3 Responses to 6: A conversation with… Mark Gilman (part 1 of 2)

  1. Neil McKeganey says:

    Marvellous interview with the equally marvellous Mark Gilman. There are few people who have as deep and wide ranging knowledge of the growth, impact, and response to heroin use in the north of England than Mark. His voice, resonant with Manchester and the northern towns he knows so well, recounting the heroin problem that was powerfully captured in the writing of Geoff Pearson and colleagues. Look forward to the second instalment of an interview that reveals so much about where the UK heroin problem came from.

  2. Russell Newcombe says:

    Great interview with Mark Gilman, taking us back to the 1980s and the origins of harm reduction, including the brilliant Smack In The Eye. It’s interesting that so many of the key figures in the pioneering harm reduction movement in North West England were from working class backgrounds and/or people who used drugs. Well, more inevitable than interesting.

  3. David Clark says:

    Just listened to this interview on the other side of the world (Perth, Western Australia). Absolutely fascinating and I learnt so much. I knew that Mark had played an important role in those early days, but I did to know the full details of his heroin research and the key role he played in the emerging harm reduction approach. I’m looking forward to reading some copies of Smack in the Eye and Peanut Pete. This history is so important! Many thanks to Toby and Mark. Can’t wait to catch up with you again next time I’m in Europe, Mark. Big Hug from down under.

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