Auntie Knows Best in BBC Management & BBC Trust - Page 1
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Auntie Knows Best
« on: October 03, 2014, 05:49:51 PM »
With apologies for starting off on a negative note, it's looking more and more like that to us, anyhow. Eleven months after joining this forum, there's precious little sign of any apparent improvement at our local radio station. It's not for want of trying, though.

Unable to penetrate the massive wall of indifference erected by BBC Audience Services, my sister-in-law started to look elsewhere, in her search for answers. As you know, 2013 was anything but a good year, for local radio listeners in Staffordshireandcheshire.

But this thread isn't just aimed at Radio Stoke, far from it! Being part of it (the forum, that is) has been such an eye-opener, into how dictatorial so many areas of the BBC have now become. Being part of the weekend music played on my local station? Forget it.

But it goes so much deeper than that, doesn't it? Look at the on-going debacle of the M*rk F*rr*st National Local Radio programme. In spite of unremarkable, declining audience figures, our collective concerns appear to have gone ignored unnoticed, don't they?

Whatever your local BBC station of choice, chances are you'll have heard one of those "In The Hot Seat" phone-ins recently. Meant to fulfil local radio's remit, of holding key decision-makers to account, somehow most BBC decision-makers seem to be exempt...

Is this an arrogant "we know best" attitude? As we've seen, at least one BBC local station took steps to actively suppress its critics.

Or is it perhaps a guilty conscience, I wonder? As Rustey has so brilliantly put it, are they incapable of defending the indefensible?

One thing's for sure, chances to "Be Part Of It " are few and far between - and diminishing by the month. What a shame that is.

Thank goodness for this forum, and the help and support offered by Tiger, Darcy and all the other contributors. I'm so, so sad to say it, but it looks as though Radio Stoke aren't interested in audience concerns any more. My last two e-mails (politely enquiring about recent changes, abruptly enforced upon Saturday morning listeners) have both been ignored - with not even an acknowledgement.

Adding the uselessness of BBC Audience Services, it's clear that we'll never get any answer to our queries - whichever route we take. Remember that, when your own local station enforces yet another unpopular, unwanted change - and declines to comment.


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Re: Auntie Knows Best
« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2014, 07:10:42 PM »
Dear North,

Thankyou for your kind comments. I hope that you know that you are not alone in wanting BBC local radio to be the best that it can be for the audiences that receive it. It is the essence of public service broadcasting and it needs to be protected. And it's managers need to understand that they are only temporary custodians and if they damage it now they may damage it for ever. I could blah on about the threat of Murdoch and government to limit it, but we all know what that means I hope?

Anyway, you were saying that you had unanswered emails. I share that with you. I contacted David Holdsworth in August about the rajar release and the impact of the Mark Forrest Show. He usually replies. He has not done so this time and I sent a reminder last week, still no reply.. This is my email.


Dear David,

I have not had a reply to this email.

I would appreciate a response that can give an accurate record of rajar
responses to the All England Show over the last two years and how that is
impacting in different areas. I think that is a fair request that deserves
an honest response that is detailed. The public do not have access to
information that they fund.That information will inform the judgment to
renew this show and it deserves to be shared.

This information is of public interest.

I represent many listeners to BBC local radio and I will remind you that the
postbag about the Mark Forrest Show in the Radio Times was recorded as the
highest response by the public to an issue regarding BBC output. That issue
has not gone away and I expect there to be evaluation of this program 2
years on.

Thankyou for your time and I look forward to your reply,


We have to remember that it is actually the job of managers in BBC local radio to understand and inform listeners and their concerns. They are paid to do that. It is our job to represent  listener concern and we are unpaid in fact we run at a loss. So we should expect a decent reply that shows some respect?

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