BBC defends 'dirty bomb' drama-documentary

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The Independent Online

The BBC acknowledged yesterday that it risked terrifying its audience by dramatising a "dirty-bomb" explosion in London, just as the Government is distributing leaflets to every household advising on how to respond to a terror attack.

The BBC acknowledged yesterday that it risked terrifying its audience by dramatising a "dirty-bomb" explosion in London, just as the Government is distributing leaflets to every household advising on how to respond to a terror attack.

Lorraine Heggessey, the controller of BBC1, described Dirty War, which will be unveiled today as part of the BBC's autumn schedule, as a "spectacular drama-documentary".

She said: "The scenario is pure fiction but it nevertheless is a real threat and we will be assessing through all the information we have at the moment, in a dramatic way, how well prepared would London be."

Ms Heggessey admitted that the "collaboration between current affairs and drama" would frighten viewers.

She said: "We are having a debate in which people involved in the making of the programme, experts in this field, will be available to answer questions. The last thing we want is to be unnecessarily alarmist."

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