Is Radio Four in disaster? Over the previous few months, what was as soon as the jewel within the BBC’s crown has are available for no small quantity of criticism. Political bias, a dwindling listenership for flagship reveals such because the In the present day programme, and new content material that leaves a lot to be desired have all put the channel beneath scrutiny.
Lauren Laverne is going through fixed criticism for Desert Island Discs, and Archers listeners sit and pay attention open-mouthed as rewilding rears its head in Ambridge. Yesterday, the controversy was intensified when former Radio Four presenter Libby Purves, writing in Radio Instances, commented on stalwarts equivalent to John Humphrys, Eddie Mair and Jonathan Dimbleby leaping ship.
“Some Radio Four loyalists will really feel that the waters are rising, and protecting sandbags ought to urgently be thrown round Jenni Murray and James Naughtie to forestall additional erosion,” wrote Purves. She is true, after all. These are presenters that all of us maintain pricey – not merely due to their familiarity, however due to the rigour they carry to their broadcasts.
However the baby-boomer exodus is barely a part of the issue. A lot has been product of the Conservative Social gathering’s intention to “withdraw engagement” from the In the present day programme, and of the sense that the Company is chatting with a pro-Stay bubble in north London. However there are wider points with the 60-year-old present that’s weighed down by quite a lot of filler materials, not least when Martha Kearney is shipped to a far-flung nook of the globe to report on impending ecological catastrophe.