ENTERTAINMENT

BBC Presenter Jane Garvey Highlights Radio 2's Lack Of Diversity

'Radio 2 doesn’t look or sound much like the Britain I know.'

26/05/2017 08:39 BST | Updated 26/05/2017 08:51 BST

BBC presenter Jane Garvey has called out Radio 2 for a lack of diversity among its presenting team.

Jane - who presents ‘Woman’s Hour’ on BBC Radio 4 - has said that while she’s a fan of Radio 2, she doesn’t feel like its hosts are representative of Britain in 2017, both in terms of gender and ethnicity.

As reported by The Sun, she explained: I listen to Radio 2 and like it. But I would, wouldn’t I? I’m a 52-year-old white woman.

“I’m not certain it should be like that in the 21st century. Radio 2 doesn’t look or sound much like the Britain I know.”

Tim P. Whitby via Getty Images
Jane Garvey

When this issue has been raised in the past, former BBC radio boss Helen Broaden has argued that messing with the successful presenting line-up, including Chris Evans, Ken Bruce, Steve Wright and Simon Mayo, could potentially affect each of their huge ratings.

However, Jane seems less convinced.

She continued: “That’s the place you could take a risk, by replacing somebody wildly successful.

“Music on Radio 2 is inoffensive. They’re going to get an audience. I’m not sure presenters are as significant as people would have you believe.”

The female presenters currently on Radio 2 include Zoe Ball, Jo Whiley and Sara Cox.

In 2015, a study from the Beeb’s watchdog, the BBC Trust, made similar observations to Jane, claiming that the corporation’s radio presenters did not display enough racial diversity.

A BBC spokesperson said at the time (via the Daily Mail): We aim to appeal to listeners from all backgrounds by offering a broad range of high-quality services and programming.

“Whilst listening to our music radio stations amongst BAME [black, Asian and minority ethnic] audiences has grown in recent years, we will continue work hard to make sure our stations represent and reach all audiences.”