Letter: The human quality found on Radio 3

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The Independent Online
Sir: Radio 3 provides an oasis of calmness in an aggressive world. There is simply no other radio channel that offers this. The 'sweeping changes in style and presentation' announced in the Independent (30 June) seek to attack this very character.

What makes Radio 3 wonderfully attractive is its refusal to adopt a hard-hitting style. If listeners want the news details, if they want on-the-spot reports, if they want the interviewer's probing, they can turn to Radio 4. We all want these things sometimes, but Radio 3 provides a haven of relief - a therapy. The presenters act as though people, not the clock, mattered; they provide a bolster of tranquillity essential to many of us in an otherwise pretty awful world.

The very essence of Radio 3 is that programmes do not run to time; that CD players stop working; that the wrong track is sometimes played; that 'we apologise for programmes running half an hour late' - because of live concert encores; that life is not predictable and things go wonderfully wrong.

If Nicholas Kenyon succeeds in his desire to 'sharpen up' Radio 3, it is this very human quality that will be lost. I hope he reconsiders his plans to jettison what is dear to many.

Yours faithfully,




30 June