Victoria Derbyshire was born in Ramsbottom, Lancashire, and attended Bury Grammar School before studying English language and literature at the University of Liverpool. Afterwards, she attended a post-graduate diploma course in radio and TV journalism at Preston Polytechnic (now the University of Central Lancashire).
Victoria Derbyshire worked as a reporter in local radio, joining BBC Radio 5 Live in 1998 as a co-presenter of the breakfast show with Julian Worricker. The programme won two Gold Sony Awards in 1998 and 2002. In January 2003, Worricker left the breakfast show and Victoria Derbyshire was partnered with Nicky Campbell. After maternity leave, she took over the morning news programme in August 2004.
Victoria Derbyshire also works on a number of television news and political programmes including: presenting Newsnight, appearances on This Week, an interview series on the BBC News Channel Victoria Derbyshire Interviews and Watchdog. She hosted a sports chat show on Channel 4 on Saturday mornings called SportsTalk. She has been sent to cover some of the biggest global stories since joining 5 Live: 9/11, the Paris Concorde crash, general elections, World Cups and Olympic Games. Her programme was the first to broadcast a show live from Zimbabwe, after President Mugabe lifted restrictions on international journalists. Her programme made radio history when it became the first to broadcast live from an abortion clinic in 2012, and late that year, from an animal testing laboratory.
In October 2011 Victoria Derbyshire made her debut on Have I Got News for You. In autumn 2013 under the new editorship of Ian Katz, Victoria Derbyshire began presenting Newsnight occasionally while continuing to present her daily 5 Live programme. Her final Radio 5 Live programme was broadcast on 5 September 2014.