Moncrieff, the afternoon sequence on Newstalk 106-108, is always a good listen at that time of the day. The topics make the competition over on 5 Live sound trashy, though the style is usually simple-enough phone and studio interviews. In between, the smarts of the listeners – emails, tweets and text messages.

The the programme’s greatest strength is the host. Sean Moncrieff comes across as personable, amicable, and intelligent. Moncrieff is realistic about the grim situation in Ireland these days, but not populist or exploitative, in contrast to the main national speech programme at that time, Liveline on RTÉ Radio 1.

It’s fun to listen to.

Today’s show included an interview (about 50 minutes in) about a reprinted 1505 book for priests describing those mysterious creatures, women. Brian Emsley of the Royal Society of Chemistry quickly relaxed – but still felt unsure about reading some of the descriptions that they had held back from the UK media release. As an aside it’s interesting quite how much the guest felt the need to point out that the book is utter nonsense – it’s hardly in question but there seemed to be an undercurrent of having had his fingers burned by the British press. I’m not going to sneer here about the quality of what they print in the papers…

For the record, two of the quotes that so worried Brian Emlsey were “women in period can kill animals with a glance” and “the virginity of a woman can be ascertained by asking a woman to sniff a lettuce – if she urinates immediately she is corrupt and therefore not a virgin”.

Moncrieff is on Newstalk 106-108 across most of Ireland, online and in Sky Digital. Host and team Tweet too.