September 19, 2014

BBC WM presenter leaves disappointed

BBC WM weekend presenter Carl Chinn MBE has said he is saddened and disappointed at being made to leave the station after 19 years on-air.

Carl’s two hour Sunday programme ended last week after management decided not to renew his contract.

The local historian has released a statement saying the show had consistently high audience figures, and thanked everyone he has worked with over the last 19 years.

The Sunday schedule now shows “Network Gold” in his previous slot, which last week followed his 12-2pm show, then a three hour sports show.

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Here’s his statement in full:

“It is with regret that I must announce that today I have presented my last Sunday programme on BBC WM. The decision to end the show was not mine.

“Instead, and after 19 years of successful broadcasting, BBC WM’s management has decided not to renew my contract to present a two-hour show on a Sunday. Of course, that is the prerogative of the management but I am deeply disappointed at that decision.

“I am disappointed most of all because I believe that the programme has been very successful, not only in terms of consistently high audience figures but also in respect of giving an opportunity for people to speak for themselves about their lives, their families, their groups, their neighbourhoods and our region.

“As such, I feel that the programme has been a means for many different people to enhance our knowledge about a variety of issues and for bringing people together.

“Nineteen years ago, when I was first asked to present a Sunday programme on BBC WM my objective was to abide by the principles of informing, entertaining and engaging with the people of the West Midlands. As part of those objectives my aims were threefold. In the first instance I wanted the show to be a collaborative effort between myself, the guests and the listeners and that instead of being ‘my’ programme it would be ‘our’ programme.

“The second aim was to give a voice to community organisations, good causes, schools, charities, local history societies, longstanding companies, innovators, novelists, writers, artists, poets, musicians, storytellers and a host of interesting individuals. As opposed to ‘sound-bite radio’, the objective was to allow people to feel comfortable and to give them time to speak for themselves and to develop their ideas.

“Importantly through letting people speak for themselves a third aim would be achieved – that of highlighting the positive aspects of our peoples and thus help to build bridges; for example, bridges between young and old, between ethnicities, between inner and outer city, and between Birmingham and the Black Country. In so doing, a positive light could be shone on parts of our region that too often have been unfairly stereo-typed negatively. As a result the programme could serve as an aid towards promoting unity and understanding and to lessen discord and disharmony.

“As I also pre-produce the show and set up all the guests, I have striven to ensure that those aims have been achieved and I hope that I have done so. I have also striven to cover a wide range of places, guests and topics. To exemplify this a selection of guests and topics covered since January 2011 is appended to this Press Release.

“Finally I wish to thank all those who have worked with me in the studio over the last 19 years and most importantly I wish to thank the guests and the listeners. I believe that together we have told some remarkable stories and that we have created some remarkable programmes – and in so doing we have made a difference for the better in and for our region. I am saddened that we cannot continue to do so.”

Posted on Tuesday, June 25th, 2013 at 6:45 am by .

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  • Doug Ross

    Another one who believes he has a divine right to be on the air.

    See also: Baker, Danny.

    • david

      Unlike Baker, he seems to have departed with dignity. This gives both him and the station “wriggle room”, if they ever want to resume their links in the future.

  • Harry D

    It always astounds me that presenters don’t see it the other way around and should be grateful for being in a job for 19 years. A lot of presenters would have loved that length of time on the air. Of course he’s disappointed, but he should also be grateful for the fact that someone believed in him for so long. I wish him well though.

  • Craig Strong

    Doug and Harry, are you two on air radio presenters?

  • John Christian Benedict Myersc

    Wonder what other presenters are charging per two hour show? Can’t imagine that a repeat of Network Gold is going to be the permanent replacement so either it will keep its Saturday slot and someone like Nick Conrad who only does three hours on the station gets a second show, or they extend the sports show in the autumn and Network Gold is only heard Sunday lunchtime

  • dave

    If he loves his program that mutch he can join a community station ? He had a good run at BBC time for a change ?

  • Mike mendoza

    all part of the demise of radio. Where everything will be networked and stuff the local community. Local radio sadly has died in many areas.. Thanks to accountants and suits..

    • Wroxham85

      Glad to see someone voicing this perspetive

    • John Christian Benedict Myersc

      Like the demise of local tv. Whether or not in the future the suits will decide everything should be local is another matter. How long before the Smooth and Heart etc networks are allowed not to even broadcast local news and travel.

  • Len Groat

    It’s very sad to see but with 297 staff at Glastonbury (source Shennan of Radio2) surely this Birmingham ‘legend’ could be allowed to stay on but at 1/3 the wage?

    The BBC needs to clear out about another 100 of its local ‘presenters’, and MORE IMPORTANTLY, 100s from its over-loaded, middle-management tiers !

  • Fanny Bhatta

    2 hours of local history about Birmingham. Sounds rivitting. *Yawn*
    Perhaps he wasn’t actually on for 19 years – maybe the content was so dull it just seemed like it.