Friday, 01 September 2017

Radio Review: 1 September

Radio 4’s Today programme has lost its way

Written by Louis Barfe
A while back, I decided that I could improve my mornings immeasurably by eschewing the Today programme on Radio 4. Just occasionally, I catch some of it by accident and realise the wisdom of this decision.Louis-Barfe-colour-176

A prime example was Mishal Husain’s interview with Matt Briggs last week. Briggs is the widower of Kim Briggs, the woman mown down by a young man on an illegal fixed-wheel bicycle, and he is campaigning for bicycle offences to be brought under the Road Traffic Act. A sensible idea, as they are, despite what pavement-pedalling idiots seem to think, road vehicles.

The item went on far too long, and Husain treated Briggs like he was a politician with something caught in the till. There were numerous invasive questions and repeated calls to make him justify himself when he had already done so. At various points in the chat, I thought Husain was trying to make Briggs break down so the clip could ‘go viral’.

If the length and tone of this item are an indication of new editor Sarah Sands’ priorities, they bode ill. It’s not as though there’s exactly a shortage of news at the moment. Still, small mercies. At least Briggs wasn’t being barked at and mocked by John Humphrys.

Looking ahead, as one should on the road, Radio 4’s Women Talking About Cars starts very promisingly next Thursday at 6.30pm. Victoria Coren Mitchell begins the series with Sheila Hancock, who admits she likes fast cars, but never goes over the limit, though she has been done for speeding. Hancock is always tremendous value, and never better than when talking about herself, so it’s a half hour to enjoy. Especially the story of taking her cat and Kenneth Williams around on her Lambretta in the Swinging Sixties.

Louis on Twitter: @AlanKelloggs or email: 

Forgot your password?
Click to read our digital edition

Boarders Dormitory Master-Mistress
We are looking to appoint a Dormitory Mistress/Master for 5 nights per week, weekday evenings and nights only, term time. (35 weeks). [...]


Housekeeper to Headmaster
We have an opportunity for an experienced live-out housekeeper. You will provide a cleaning and hospitality service for the Headmaster and his guests and help to ensure the household runs efficiently. [...]


Full Time Housekeeper, Nanny
We are looking for a full time, live-out housekeeper/nanny. We are a relaxed young couple living in a large country house, and will have one newborn baby. [...]


Experienced Carer, Companion, Housekeeper needed
Our elderly mother needs a live in carer/companion on a part time basis. Must be warm hearted, calm & compassionate, with a good sense of humour. [...]


Cook, Housekeeper wanted
Good cooking skills required to cater for light meals for the Principal and a small staff, as well as occasional lunch/dinner parties. [...]




What the stars have in store for you this week.2017

Capricorn Aquarius Pisces Aries Taurus Gemini Cancer Leo Virgo Libra Scorpio Sagittarius

Sign up to receive our weekly newsletter