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Costa Brava

The Week In Radio: When the appliance of science is hot stuff

One question guaranteed not to come up in the leaders' debate tonight is "What will happen to BBC radio under your leadership?" But even if it did, the answer from all three would be so similar that they might as well be reading from the same cue card. Despite testing times ahead, with huge question marks over the licence fee and the scope of the Corporation's activities, the BBC would get the same kidglove treatment as the NHS or the Pope. Gordon Brown would like the BBC "independent" and Nick Clegg wants it "securely funded". Even the Conservatives, who want the licence fee supervised by the National Audit Office and the BBC Trust abolished, talk of a "strong and independent BBC". And no one would mention the World Service, which rarely gets the recognition it deserves, despite being our greatest cultural export after Shakespeare.