Hug a white van man, BBC editor tells reporters

The BBC has for too long been obsessed with pandering to "white middle-class liberals in London" at the expense of working class right-wingers in the country.

Not Pandora's view - but that of the BBC's head of television news, Peter Horrocks, who says that the corporation's reporting from the "safe centre" ground is making it irrelevant to vast swathes of the British public. Expect more stories on rubbish collection, gun crime, rising unemployment and immigration.

"We haven't reflected the public on views on Europe, views on immigration, views to do with the white working-class. These haven't been covered enough," he told Pandora on Friday night. "There is a valid criticism of the BBC that it has appeared to be concerned with metropolitan, chattering, right-thinking people. We have to start reflecting the range of views in British society.

"People have the internet and all the different views there. The BBC is a public service broadcaster; it should reflect that. At the very extremes this might mean talking to the Taliban and to the BNP."

Horrocks added that minorities were not well represented. "We are not talking about a small change [in BBC policy] here. People will be offended by the views they disagree with. We are asking for tolerance from the public. The alternative is a load of bland views in the middle of public opinion that don't affect anyone."

A harsh indictment of the Beeb's old news philosophy. Or perhaps a brave step into the future.

Watch out, kids, it's the Borismobile!

Boris Johnson is certainly prone to gaffes, but is four and a half tons of steel cage and sealed, inch-thick windows necessary?

One of the Tory higher education spokesman's moonlighting gigs is as car reviewer for GQ. His latest write-up in this Thursday's magazine sees him take an armoured Range Rover for a whirl (before shooting it with an air rifle).

One of the motor's anti-assassination features is a public address system, "for negotiating with Kalashnikov-toting militiamen at a roadblock".

Writes Bozza: "As I drove one of the children to school we had great fun. Whenever we saw a bunch of kids at a bus stop we would hail them, making sure to use our best Robocop accents. We would say, 'You there!' and would continue, as the poor kids flinched and stared around: 'Be good today! Work hard and achieve more.'"

Didn't go down too well with the environmental types in Islington.

Kate gets provocative

Kate Moss has a book coming out. Not, sadly, the "autobiography" for which Richard Branson was reportedly willing to pay her £1m earlier this year.

Instead, the model will do a few lines for a picture book, writing a foreword to go with photographs of her in scanties from Agent Provocateur.

Published by Anova in April, The Four Dreams of Miss X will basically be the coffee-table tome of her fruity online advertising for the erotic lingerie emporium. The title, cover price £25, will also include a DVD of the four Mike Figgis-directed films.

Agent Provocateur is having to be diplomatic with Moss's camp, after an alleged recent fallout between the two, and would comment only that it hoped to make an official announcement "in the next few weeks".

Dirty talk

An extraordinary reaction from readers over the Radio 4 broadcaster Simon Fanshawe's request that his friends pay £35 to come to his birthday party - and his subsequent salvo of profanities directed at Pandora.

Others reported similar experiences, and the Simon Fanshawe Charity Swearbox (£5 a cuss) currently contains £40.

I hear "four-letter Fanny" is standing unopposed as chair of the governing body at Sussex University.

"We are voting on 15 December," writes a member. "Effing and blinding aren't the done thing in Chamber, so conservative members may have a surprise." Should spice up funding talks!

Writes another acquaintance: "I just got back from a meeting with my builders. They wanted 3 per cent of the value just for a quote, so I told them to 'Fanshawe off'."

I can't get a woman, wails Humphrys

We return to Mastermind's desperate search for women contestants for the next quiz series, to offset the proliferation of male anorak-wearers. Host John Humphrys writes to Pandora: "We want a female winner!" (There hasn't been one since he began presenting.)

"Dig deep on this one," he instructs. "Can it be that women know less than men? Perish the thought! Can it be that they can't stand the pressure when they're against the clock? Unlikely. Can it be that they're actually more thoughtful than men because they struggle for the right answer when men will instantly snap 'Pass!' and move on to the next question?

"You want to know what I think? I think I'd be insane to venture an opinion." Just the sort of evasive answer that would usually have Humphrys strapping on the knuckledusters ...

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Recruitment Genius: Internal Recruiter - Manufacturing

£20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Internal Recruiter (manufact...

Ashdown Group: HR Manager (CIPD) - Barking / East Ham - £50-55K

£50000 - £55000 per annum + 25 days holidays & benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Man...

Recruitment Genius: Operations / Project Manager

£40000 - £48000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This software company specialis...

Ashdown Group: Human Resources Manager

£28000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: A successful organisation...

Day In a Page

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory
Ashes 2015: Alastair Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Aussie skipper Michael Clarke was lured into believing that what we witnessed at Edgbaston and Trent Bridge would continue in London, says Kevin Garside
Can Rafael Benitez get the best out of Gareth Bale at Real Madrid?

Can Benitez get the best out of Bale?

Back at the club he watched as a boy, the pressure is on Benitez to find a winning blend from Real's multiple talents. As La Liga begins, Pete Jenson asks if it will be enough to stop Barcelona
Athletics World Championships 2015: Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jessica Ennis-Hill and Katarina Johnson-Thompson heptathlon rivalry

Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jess and Kat rivalry

The last time the two British heptathletes competed, Ennis-Hill was on the way to Olympic gold and Johnson-Thompson was just a promising teenager. But a lot has happened in the following three years
Jeremy Corbyn: Joining a shrewd operator desperate for power as he visits the North East

Jeremy Corbyn interview: A shrewd operator desperate for power

His radical anti-austerity agenda has caught the imagination of the left and politically disaffected and set a staid Labour leadership election alight
Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief: Defender of ancient city's past was killed for protecting its future

Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief

Robert Fisk on the defender of the ancient city's past who was killed for protecting its future