Monday, April 28, 2008

BBC radio chief rejects calls to privatise Radio 1 and Radio 2

BBC radio chief Jenny Abramsky today rejected calls to privatise Radio 1 and Radio 2, saying it would be a "cultural travesty".

"You do not need to destroy Radios 1 and 2 to ensure that our great cultural institutions are given access to broadcasting," said Abramsky, the director of BBC audio and music. "To do so would be a cultural travesty and confining public service broadcasting into cultural elitism."

It was the BBC's role to "entertain as well as inform and educate", she added, claiming that the two music networks "underpin the nation's cultural life in the broadest sense".

Abramsky was responding to a speech by Peter Bazalgette, the television guru synonymous with Big Brother, who last week called for the privatisation of the two BBC radio stations and Channel 4, to fund new public service content from arts institutions, museums, galleries and individuals.
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