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Tories say BBC should be made to play God Save The Queen at 1am every day

Culture secretary says national anthem suggestion is ‘fantastic’

Jon Stone
Policy Correspondent
Thursday 06 January 2022 19:15 GMT
ITN chief executive Deborah Turness has been announced as the BBC’s new head of news and current affairs
ITN chief executive Deborah Turness has been announced as the BBC’s new head of news and current affairs (PA)

The culture secretary has endorsed calls by Tory MPs for the BBC to be made to play “God Save the Queen” at the end of daily programming.

During an exchange in the Commons, Conservative MP Andrew Rosindell said that singing the national anthem was “something that provides a great sense of unity and pride in our nation”.

“Will the minister take steps to encourage public broadcasters to play the national anthem, and ensure that the BBC restore it at the end of the day’s programming before it switches to News 24?” he asked.

Nadine Dorries, the culture secretary who is responsible for the broadcaster, interjected, calling out that Mr Rosindell had asked a “fantastic question”.

Ms Dorries has said aspects of the BBC could be put under review, including the future of the licence fee.

Her deputy, minister Nigel Huddleston, responded to Mr Rosindell’s question for the government, stating: “We fully support the singing of the national anthem.

“The ‘Her Majesty the Queen’, and other expressions of patriotism, including the flying of the Union Jack. The more that we hear here, the national anthem song frankly, the better.”

BBC One previously played the national anthem at the close of programming, but since 1997 it has broadcast on a 24-hour basis – with the old practice ceasing at the same time.

Terrestrial BBC channels switch to showing the rolling news coverage in the early hours of the morning – usually around 1am on weekdays and 2am weekends. BBC News 24 is the old name for the BBC News channel, last used by the Corporation 14 years ago.

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