Letter: They don't do it any better in America

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Sir: In his letter (7 August) about Radio 3 changes, Pete Grainger praises the commercial American classical music stations,

citing them as proof that 'popularity in broadcasting may alter standards but need not lower them'.

I do not know when he last heard such stations, but a fortnight ago, in Asheville, North Carolina, the local classical music station there was an embarrassment to listen to.

The programming consisted of almost non-stop fund-raising - the listeners practically being held to ransom by a couple of prattling presenters (with what passes for a posh accent in the United States) to pledge money before the next disc was put on. And I have had the same listening experience all over America.

I do hope this is not the shape of things to come here, particularly with the recession now forecast to last a further two years. We will get no music at all]

Yours faithfully,


London, SE1

7 August