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Friday, April 29, 2016

What's the BBC done to upset the UK's gardeners?

I never thought, back in the day when I had razor blade earrings and liked punk music, that I would ever become a gardener.

But a gardener I am, in my spare time. And one of my pleasures is watching BBC Gardeners' World, which my parents used to watch in the era of Percy Thrower, even further back in the day.

Lately though, the nation's gardeners are up in arms.

The BBC keeps cancelling Gardeners' World for sport. Women's football, snooker, and soon athletics. Instead of moving something to the red button, or online, or to a different channel, they simply cancel Gardeners' World.

At this time of year when our herbacious perennials are starting to go crazy, we're thirsty for gardening know-how and knowledge from Monty Don and team. It's just not on!

To add insult to injury, BBC Scotland commendably moved the snooker to the red button so that Beechgrove Garden went out as normal.

Over on Facebook, a new group "Keep Gardeners' World Growing" has a petition and the members have been bombarding the BBC with letters and getting patronizing replies. 

Tonight on Twitter, Monty's Dog Nigel  (yes really) will lead a protest that will hopefully see #GardenersWorld trending again. 

You see, it's not an isolated incident.  This has been happening for years.  Some Tristram or other public school idiot (sorry) at the BBC has decided gardening is a minority hobby practiced by toothless silver surfers or Jeremy Corbyn (known for having an allotment).

Let me enlighten you with these stats from the Horticultural Trades Association:
  • There are 22 million domestic gardens in the UK
  • There are 600,000 allotments in the UK, with long waiting lists (source: UK Govt)
  • UK consumers spend around £5 billion a year on products and plants for their gardens - that's more than we spend on chocolate as a nation 
  • Over half of the overseas tourists who come to the UK each year will visit one of the UK's parks or gardens, making horticulture a key part of the UK's brand image for tourists.

  • Furthermore, gardening is not restricted to "oldies." "Gardening appears to be growing in popularity among younger generations in recent years, thanks to popular gardening television programmes such as the Big Allotment Challenge and Love Your Garden" - Key Note.  There are many organaisations like Young Horts. 

      I would advise the BBC to back down because we're digging in, and this one is going to run and run. Come and join Nigel on Twitter tonight. 



      3 comments:

      Rose H (UK) said...

      Well said!

      Keith Marsh said...

      Hear hear

      Anonymous said...

      Fed up with the BBC. They even saw fit to axe the Big Allotment Challenge it was this programme that git me interested in gardening and now have my own allotment.

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