85. India Hicks; Family, Bahamian Island Life, Maharajahs’ Palaces and Rat Infested Hostels - The Big Travel Podcast

Episode 85
January 21 , 2020

85. India Hicks; Family, Bahamian Island Life, Maharajahs’ Palaces and Rat Infested Hostels

Entrepreneur and style icon India Hicks has lived an extraordinary life so far. The daughter of designer David Hicks and granddaughter of Lord and Lady Mountbatten (and related to everyone from Prince Philip to Queen Victoria), she ran away, of sorts, to a remote island in the Bahamas and 25 years and five children later is still there. India talks about her famous and sometimes unconventional family, the challenge of taking her 90-year-old mother to Iceland, the joys of backpacking in rat-infested hostels and the harrowing experience of Hurricane Dorian. Our host Lisa is the producer of the un-missable India Hicks Podcast and is delighted to have India on Big Travel Podcast.


On this episode we cover:


Running away to live on Harbour Island

Getting naked on the Bahamas

Growing up with her famous interior decorator father David Hicks

And of course her grandparents the Mountbattens

The rough and ready first days on the then remote island

No internet, no mobiles, little communication with the outside world

Going into labour knowing nothing about birth

Her father building an ‘Egyptian mausoleum’ on a neighbouring Eleuthera

Falling pregnant after four months

Her five children with partner David Flint Wood

The history of unconventionality in her family

Island life being a mix of magical pink sands and turquoise waters…

But the awful lot of hardship that goes with it

The terrifying and damaging hurricanes

Having very little medical help

If the boat doesn’t come there is no food on the island

The on-going aftermath of the Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas

‘A natural disaster on a scale that had never been seen there’

India’s campaigning for support of hurricane victims

Feeling hesitant about being on the island for the first time in her life

The harrowing experiences during the hurricane and tsunami

Countless victims still missing

The world moves onto the next disaster

Islands uninhabitable and townships completely gone

Having a somewhat gung ho attitude

Growing up in an extraordinary family

Becoming aware of her father’s success as a designer

Being called India being rare at school

Growing up extraordinary homes due to her designer father

The unique partnership between her grandfather Lord Mountbatten and Lady Mountbatten

Lord Mountbatten being last Viceroy of India

Lady Mountbatten being a great adventurer

And sent to help with prisoners of war in the jungle

You must listen to the India Hicks Podcast

Backpacking round the world age 18

Staying in rat-infested youth hostels for 50p a night

Also staying in Maharajah’s palaces

How travel has never been so important

Family holidays as a child, not so interesting museums

Her brother Ashley Hicks paying attention to the history

The murder of her grandfather by the IRA

Ten grandchildren on family holidays with her grandfather in Ireland

How the family focus was initially ripped apart

The long period of healing

Her aunt setting the example that there was going to be no bitterness towards Ireland

Healing family holidays in Scotland

How Ireland will always hold a special place in the family’s heart

Tracing her family’s history in India

Being welcomed by the Indian people

Traveling to amazing places when modelling

Being fascinated by Burma

Taking her children to see the incredible wildlife Botswana and Kenya

Africa’s smells and sights and coloured un-paralleled anywhere else

The challenge of taking her 90 year old mother to Iceland

The scenery and quiet of Iceland being spectacular

Recording a special episode about the extraordinary Princess Alice, Prince Philip’s mother

India’s episode with Tina Brown

Lady Pamela’s starring role in The India Hicks Podcast

Having self-confessed terrible taste in music

Stevie Nicks being unbeatable