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Martin Kelner, Journalist, Author and Radio Presenter.
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The BBC White Paper, Coldplay, and mushy peas
By Martin "portland cement" Kelner on May 15, 2016 - 10:35:41 PM

The BBC breathed a sigh of relief when the White Paper on its future was published the other day, and instead of the threatened sanctions - Strictly Come Dancing to be scheduled at 3am, Tony Hall to be given Chinese burns when anything the Daily Mail doesn't like is broadcast, and Alan Yentob to have his head pushed down the toilet - the Culture Secretary stood up and said: "You're all doing very well."


And of course they are in many ways.   The Hillsborough documentary shown last week on BBC2 and still available on the iPlayer was painstaking journalism, an extraordinary piece of storytelling, pointing up aspects of the tragedy we had either overlooked or never been told, including the testimony of some of the traumatised policemen on duty on the fateful day.


And would we not all miss Radio Four if the BBC were to be dismantled; for Desert Island Discs, at least, and those funny little half-hour documentaries they do at 3.30 in the afternoon on the history of marmalade or T.S.Eliot's laundry lists?


But just because you love the BBC - which remains one of the most respected British institutions, ahead of the Royal Family, the Church of England, and Coldplay - it doesn't mean it's sacrosanct.....

For the rest of the column, you want, published at 10am Mon May 16th.....

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