HC Deb 22 May 1957 vol 570 cc1203-4
7. Mr. Grey

asked the Postmaster-General when it is expected that more Home Service programmes will originate from the regions.

The Postmaster-General (Mr. Ernest Marples)

I assume the hon. Member has in mind the recent statement bv the B.B.C. that Regional programmes of country-wide appeal will be increasingly included in its main programmes. The B.B.C. informs me that this policy is now in operation and will be developed as opportunity offers.

Mr. Grey

Will the right hon. Gentleman consider the problem of the North-East, which seems to have no power at all over programmes which will satisfy listeners in the North-East? Will he consider the matter and see what can be done to give a better service to the North-East?

Mr. Marples

The problems of the North-East are continually in my mind. Programme content is a matter for the B.B.C.

Mr. Shinwell

But will the right hon. Gentleman get them out of his mind and get them resolved? Why should we be treated in this scurvy fashion?

Mr. Marples

I would not dare to treat the right hon. Gentleman in a scurvy fashion.

Dame Irene Ward

This is a very sore point with the North-East. Does not my right hon. Friend think that we ought to have two Home regional programmes to make up for having to share a wavelength with Northern Ireland, thus cutting our share in half?

Mr. Marples

The Northern Ireland portion of the programmes which are broadcast in the North-East is less than 10 per cent, of the 115 hours a week broadcasting for the area.