No prime time for TV Chief Rabbi

September 13, 2012
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BBC commissioning editor for religion Aaqil Ahmed was forced to defend his late-night scheduling of the Chief Rabbi’s annual Rosh Hashanah broadcast.

Lord Sacks’s programme, which showed footage of his debate with atheist Richard Dawkins, went out on BBC1 on Wednesday at 11.15pm.

But, at a BBC symposium on religion, broadcaster Roger Bolton, who used to present the Sunday religious affairs programme on Radio 4, protested: “You’ve got a programme with the Chief Rabbi and Richard Dawkins, and the BBC in all it wisdom is putting it out when most people are going to sleep.”

Ahmed responded that it could have gone out at 9pm or 10pm on BBC 2 “but it would have got less viewers”.

Last updated: 5:06pm, September 13 2012