The Socialist Unity Network

Wiltshire BBC in BNP interview storm

Andy Newman, Race Officer – Swindon and Wiltshire GMB Union

Wiltshire BBC backed down over plans to give a radio interview to the
extremist BNP on D-Day, 6th June after scores of people telephoned and
e-mailed the BBC to complain, including James Gray MP and Julia Drown MP.

Swindon campaigners from Unite Against Fascism leafleted Calne on 6th June against the BNP, where one of the fascist candidates in the South West
lives. The BBC offered to interview Andy Prendergast of Unite Against Fascism on their Sunday Morning programme, however, the BBC then said that the BNP’s Press Officer would also be on the programme.

Mr Prendergast, who is an official of the GMB union in Swindon, then withdrew rather than give the BNP free publicity. The BBC then said they
intended to proceed anyway with the BNP interview.

Unite Against Fascism organised scores of local people to complain,
including representatives of all three main political parties, socialists and anti-war campaigners.

Kirsty Ward, BBC News Editor stated that the item had been withdrawn because it was not news.


June 2004


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