The shows/items that impressed, moved, entertained or captivated me most on BBC local radio, week ending 8 July

  1. BBC Coventry & Warwickshire – Vic Minett features Trish Adudu’s hard-hitting/emotional documentary investigating illegal products used in skin bleaching, featuring lots of contributors including an aspiring model and undercover audio from beauty parlours (Thursday 1003)
  2. BBC Three Counties Radio – Nick Coffer puts great questions to Dennis Locorriere about Dr Hook, Union City, songwriter Shel Silverstein and more (Thursday 1236)
  3. BBC WM – Adrian Goldberg presents us breakfast show from “Birmingham’s forgotten housing estate”, where the Gladiator pub is boarded-up and the Legion club and secondary school face closure (Monday 0707)  
  4. BBC Radio Leicester – Ben Jackson visits Seldom Seen Farm and falls in love with the noisy goslings – “they are a beautifully, buttery yellow” (Wednesday 1610)
  5. BBC Radio Solent  – Richard Latto’s Stereo Underground is a well-built music show as exemplified by the opening half hour on Saturday compromising the Clash, Black Grape, the evening’s featured artists AC/DC, Plastic Bertrand, Adam and the Ants, the Undertones, James Bay and the Beatles (Saturday 1800)
  6. BBC Radio Derby – the breakfast show features strong condemnations of Tony Blair after the publication of the Chilcot report as Ian Skye interviews Iraqi doctor Sami  (“he should be prosecuted”) and Martyn Williams visits Mike, who lost his son in Iraq war (“he should be ashamed of himself”) (Thursday 0738, 0808)
  7. BBC Dorset – Steve Harris leads on an exclusive BBC Radio Solent/Bournemouth Echo investigation into attempts to conceal asbestos from parents at a Dorset free school, with Tristan Pascoe reporting and interview with an Asbestos In Schools campaigner. (Tuesday 0708)
  8. BBC Radio Suffolk – Stephen Foster plays Lenny Kravitz and Gordon Lightfoot before and after he talks to an Ipswich junior doctor about the strike vote. Only Foz does this sort of mix of news and grown-up music  (Tuesday 1810)
  9. BBC Somerset – Ben McGrail does a bit of roleplaying as a dawdling tractor driver to set in motion a phone-in asking: should tractor drivers be fined if they cause traffic problems? (Tuesday 0913)
  10. BBC Radio Manchester – the Surprise A Bride feature with Becky Want ends with Leanne having to redo her makeup after lovely words from her dad (Saturday 0945)
  11. BBC Radio Leicester – urbane historian Richard Gill tells Jonathan Lampon the story of Thomas Cook, “the godfather of travel”, linked to reports by Helen McCarthy live at a Loughborough event to commemorate Cook’s first trip and listeners giving their holiday recommendations (Tuesday 1020)
  12. BBC Somerset – Matt Faulkner talks to Billy Bragg about organising Leftfield at Glastonbury (“the mud was like peanut butter”), Jeremy Corbyn (“you’ve got to accept democracy”) and Frome (Tuesday 1653)
  13. BBC Wiltshire – Ben Prater sets up a listener interaction on mesmerising moments with nature by telling, rather beautifully, the tale of an encounter with a hedgehog (Monday 0722
  14. BBC Radio Derby – Andy Strachan explores the growing cafe culture in Derby – “avocado is really popular at the moment” he is told in an entertaining report  (Wednesday 1753
  15. BBC Radio Lincolnshire – Chris Berrow talks to Ben Earl from the Shires about how his new baby has been keeping him up at night – and their music (Tuesday 1410)
  16. BBC Radio Bristol/BBC Somerset – Clare Cavanagh talks to jazz saxophonist James Morton about gigging as a schoolboy, his new album The Kid, knowing when to stop when improvising etc (Monday 1540)
  17. BBC Radio Cumbria – Gordon Swindlehurst’s all-inclusive music policy includes a Burl Ives (Swallowed A Fly)/Aztec Camera (Somewhere In My Heart) segue on a show also featuring Ute Lemper, Bill Withers, Canned Heat, the Babys, Jon and Vangelis and Wizard (Monday 1244)
  18. All stations – Paul Rowley sheds light on the Tory leadership election (“it’s a rough old trade”) and the Chilcot report (“several times larger than War & Peace”) (throughout the week)
  19. BBC Radio OxfordKat Orman talks to Wendy Tyndale from Oxford about her extraordinary life as a human rights worker (Tuesday 1008)

  20. BBC Radio Cornwall – Laurence Reed’s monthly focus on mental health addresses borderline personality disorder, beginning with Peta Temple talking candidly about living with the condition to reporter Gemma Taylor (Wednesday 1210)
  21. BBC Radio Northampton – Stuart Linnell has outstanding coverage previewing the Chilcot report publication talking to Northamptonshire people affected by the Iraq war – beginning with the mother of a soldier and a Labour MP who opposed the war (“it was a heinous act”) (Wednesday 0707)
  22. BBC Radio Norfolk – Thordis Fridriksson – who is broadcasting live from White House Farm in Sprowston to examine how farming is changing – joins butcher Steve Taylor to learn about his summer sizzle kebabs, chicken cushions, cracked black pepper sausages etc before having a go as sausage making (Wednesday 1112)
  23. BBC Newcastle – Elsie Manning, who lost her daughter in Iraq, talks to Charlie Charlton about the Chilcot report – “Blair signed my daughter’s death warrant,” she says, followed by an interview by Alfie Joey with Blair’s former Sedgefield agent who defends the ex-PM  (Thursday 0808)
  24. BBC Radio Lincolnshire – Melvyn Prior hosts a Coffee Club at Spalding’s Uptown Vinyl Records where he talks about the good old days of music with the owner, customers and special guests including Ray Fenwick of Spencer Davis Group/Magpie theme tune fame (Wednesday 0930) and Gilson Lavis of Squeeze/Jools Holland Orchestra fame (1010)
  25. BBC Radio Cambridgeshire – Jeremy Sallis talks to Hazel O’Connor about rescue dogs, Ray Davies, female punk icons, Broken Glass etc (Friday 1234)
  26. BBC Radio Jersey – Cameron Ward gets the forthright views of studio guests Major Danny Wright, a Jersey soldier who served in the Iraq war, and lecturer Bram Wanrooij on the Chilcot report (Wednesday 1710)
  27. BBC Essex – James Whale previews Essex Pride in Chelmsford with a celebratory interview with transsexual police sergeant Gina Denham, who is policing the event (Friday 0808)
  28. BBC Radio Merseyside – Tony Snell meets Helen, who fell on hard times after her husband had a stroke and is now working for Liverpool Community Advice and he visits a school for visually impaired children where he encounters the giggly Mala (Friday 0710, 0750)
  29. BBC Radio Berkshire – fan Andrew Peach interviews Natalie Williams, who is supporting Elton John, as he broadcasts live from the Henley festival where Will Young and beatboxer Shlomo are also among the interviewees (Wednesday 0907)
  30. BBC Tees – Mike Parr enjoys a carrot cookie as he is joined by Becky from Beamish Museum who is living in 1950s rations for a week (Friday 1051)



  • BBC Radio Berkshire
  • the decision to close BBC Monitoring in Caversham is described as “another terrible mistake by BBC management,” by Reading MP Rob Wilson in an interview by Phil Kennedy (Tuesday 1715)
  • Bill Buckley visits the Hampton Court flower show (features a nice gasp when he nearly ruins a display) (Tuesday 1320)
  • BBC Radio Bristol
  • John Darvall interviews Downend entrepreneur Chris Ford about his medical alert wristband (Monday 1110)
  • Steve Yabsley gets a look at the restored, remarkable Beast of Turin, the fastest car on Earth in 1913, as he meets its owner, Duncan Pittway (Monday 1235)
  • Laura Rawlings talks to Prof Emma Bunce in the Ask The Expert slot about the Juno mission to Jupiter (Tuesday 1725)
  • Steve Yabsley asks: how would you feel if you were relaxing in a jacuzzi and “dirty old man” Albert Steptoe climbed in? (Wednesday 1316)
  • Emma Britton broadcasts live from Avon & Somerset police’s call centre in Portishead – as it undertakes a social media #ASP24 exercise and the force deals with a suspicious death discovered in the early hours (Thursday 0706)
  • BBC Radio Cambridgeshire
  • Johnny Dee has some cheerful conversations as he voxpops Whittlesey when Paul Stainton’s Big Conversation asks for stories on cycling (Monday 1050)
  • Johnny Dee reports live from Cambridge sorting office to talk to postal workers about dog attacks (Friday 0707)
  • BBC Radio Cornwall
  • David White is inundated with responses as he asks listeners for their stories of their first/favourite cars(Monday 1015)
  • the breakfast show features Mel Osborne on the outcry over the new St Ives one-way system and environment correspondent Adrian Campbell explaining the county’s black grass problem (Friday 0738)
  • BBC Coventry & Warwickshire
  • Vic Minett has fun talking to the wonderful impressionist Steve Nallon (Thursday 1127)
  • Brody Swain features chat/live music (On The Road Again) from the Spa Strummers on the eve of the Great Midland Ukulele Festival  (Friday 1424)
  • BBC Radio Cumbria
  • Mike Zeller features Paul Rowley in Westminster, two local Tories and voxpopped Cumbrians talking about the Tory leadership (Tuesday 0705)
  • Sara Dumbell reports from Seascale on the work of the Civil Nuclear Constabulary about their call on the public to report suspicions (Wednesday 1710)
  • BBC Radio Derby
  • Andy Potter admires the car and talks to Team Thunderbirds in the station car park as they prepare for the Mongol Rally (Monday 1520)
  • Wesley Mallin reports from a Derby waste management site as the deadline to clean up the source of a fly infestation approaches (Thursday 0716)
  • Jonathan Baker meets Tony Johnson who has been to every Wetherspoons pub (about 900) and can name them all (Thursday 0816)
  • Sally Pepper and Martyn Williams meet up to compete on the BMX track at Alfriston Park after spending the show cycling along Derby’s Route 66 as part of the Fit Over 50 campaign (Friday 1248)
  • BBC Radio Devon
  • Sophie Pierce reports from a burial ground which wants to use the green technology of alkaline hydrolysis (Thursday 0707)
  • David FitzGerald, broadcasting live from the blustery 43rd Vehicle Gathering at Powderham Castle, meets TV gardener Toby Buckland (Friday 1104)
  • BBC Essex
  • Tony Fisher talks to the “built to last” Suzi Quatro, who has been living in Essex since 1980 (Thursday 1411)
  • Sadie Nine has a phone interview with Billy Bragg about appearing at the Village Green festival, the need for a general election after the Brexit vote etc (Friday 1004)
  • BBC Radio Gloucestershire
  • Anna King, who is dosed up on Day Nurse, features an interview by Richard Atkins with the departing Salvation Army major Adrian Allman, a man overflowing in enthusiasm (Monday 1115)
  • Chris Brierley uses Following The Leader from Peter Pan to add sparkle to his local angle look at the Tory leadership race (Tuesday 0707)
  • BBC Hereford & Worcester
  • Kalpana Boodhoo meets Jane from Droitwich who has MS and gets help from her fetching/carrying care dog Leah  (Tuesday 1045)
  • Nina Das Gupta reports live from a new Aldi supermarket, meeting shoppers queuing for bargains (Thursday 0725)
  • Andrew Easton talks to reporter Ian Williams in Lyon who getting excited about Wales’ prospects in the Euro 2016 semifinal (Wednesday 1416)
  • Tammy Gooding talks to Rebecca Adlington about the Just Keep Moving campaign for kids and her swimming career, interspersed by the Friday Headbang song from Aerosmith (Friday 1338)
  • BBC Radio Humberside
  • Andy Comfort’s studio guest is former Hull City/Welsh youth goalkeeper John Davies, building up to Wales’ Euro 2016 semifinal (Wednesday 1516)
  • Carl Wheatley talks to artist Spencer Tunick about his Sea Of Hull artwork featuring thousands of naked people wearing blue body paint (Thursday 0753)
  • BBC Radio Jersey
  • Ashlea Tracey visits a school where children are set the Big Friendly Read challenge to read six books over the summer holidays (Thursday 0723)
  • BBC Radio Kent
  • Julia George’s phone-in has some powerful calls as she tackles the rise in the use of antidepressants and whether alternatives work in tackling depression (Wednesday 0905)
  • BBC Radio Leeds
  • Andrew Edwards launches the Big Yorkshire Book Club with author Gill Moran and bookshop owner Phil Caplan; The Night Circus is the first book under discussion (Monday noon)
  • Richard Stead launches a packed parking peeves phone-in accompanied by Charles Engwell voxpopping Bradford and Sophie Sulehria talking about the BBC’s national survey about the no-change-given scandal (Tuesday 0909)
  • BBC Radio Leicester
  • Jim Davis broadcasts live from Leicester’s Glenfield hospital where a senior consultant promises to fight the NHS decision to close its children’s heart surgery unit (Friday 0748)
  • Ben Jackson remembers the grandfather he adored as he reports from  Rutland Water in the series on presenters’ favourite places (Friday 0756)
  • BBC Radio Lincolnshire
  • Scott Dalton gets a good reaction when he calls for stories on how careers advisors get things wrong and features quality reports on dashboard cameras (Harry Parkhill) and a troubled community swimming pool (Natasha Turney) (Tuesday 0706)
  • Scrapheap by The Finest Hour features in the daily BBC Introducing slot on Nicola Gilroy’s show and provides blessed relief from the station’s all-hits playlist (Wednesday 1539)
  • BBC Radio Manchester
  • Mike Sweeney asks listeners about the things you do for love. Tony in  Glossop calls to talk about the full-sized tattoo of his late wife’s face on his heart (Wednesday 0923)
  • BBC Newcastle
  • Anna Foster discusses hair loss and the My New Hair project with hairdresser Trevor Sorbie and Helen from Consett, who lost her hair during cancer treatment  (Thursday 1015)
  • Today’s North East leads on a fatal bus crash in Darlington with Andy Bell reporting (Thursday 1603)
  • BBC Radio Norfolk
  • Stephen Bumfrey hosts a glam rock special of One Foot in the Groove and the best band ever, the Sweet, are represented by Ballroom Blitz (my karaoke tour de force), sandwiched between Glitter Band and Suzi Quatro (Wednesday 1223)
  • BBC Radio Northampton
  • Sam Read profiles Tory leadership candidate/local MP Andrea Leadsom, with some nifty linking together of her past statements, in the lead item for the Annabel Amos programme (Tuesday 1709)
  • Bernie Keith’s bouquet call is to Pat on her 70th birthday  – “I’ve got 22 coming up The Pytchley tonight” (Wednesday 0922)
  • BBC Radio Nottingham
  • Verity Cowley meets the four actors who play the Beatles in the Let It Be  musical – and they play Please Please Me (Tuesday 1622)
  • Mark Dennison asks: was it refreshing to see an MP speaking his mind? in light of Notts MP Ken Clarke being caught badmouthing Tory colleagues (Wednesday 0912)
  • BBC Radio Oxford
  • Howard Bentham taps into the excitement about Jupiter by talking to Oxford astronomer Chris Lintott at Juno mission control (Tuesday 0750)
  • David Prever previews the publication of the Chilcot Report into the Iraq war with a report by Peter Hunt and an interview with a professor of international security (Tuesday 1725)
  • BBC Radio Sheffield
  • Howard Pressman interviews the curator of the Made in Sheffield exhibition which includes the world’s fastest sled, prosthetic ears, Simpkins Sweets and Henderson’s Relish (Wednesday 1650)
  • Toby Foster leads on the revised HS2 train route in South Yorkshire, with Tom Ingall explaining the plans and a challenging interview with Sheffield council (Thursday 0808)
  • BBC Radio Shropshire
  • Paul Shuttleworth completes the trip from Much Wenlock to Oswestry – “a really nice journey” – on the third of his Catch The Bus Week challenges on the Jim Hawkins show (Wednesday 1052)
  • Mark Elliot marks Eid at Wellington mosque to talk to joyful Muslims celebrating the end of Ramadan and fundraising for the poor on Adam Green’s show  (Wednesday 1617)
  • BBC Radio Solent
  • Alex Dyke talks to England’s 1966 World Cup hero Sir Geoff Hurst – “apart from the goalposts, everything in our great industry has moved dramatically” (Tuesday 1410)
  • BBC Somerset
  • Harriet Bradshaw reports for Claire Carter’s show from the Taunton site where a specially adapted home is being built for a Royal Marine who became infected in Afghanistan (Wednesday 0710)
  • BBC Surrey
  • James Cannon and Suzanne Bamborough lead on Alabama rot disease among dogs, with audio of John whose pet Barney died and an interview with vet (Monday 0707)
  • Mike Buxton is joined on Drive at 5 by political reporter Jack Fiehn for a useful, audio-packed digest of the 2.7m words of the Chilcot report (Wednesday 1712)
  • BBC Sussex
  • Neil Pringle builds a map of acts of kindness in Sussex throughout his breakfast show (eg Deirdre assisted after a fall, Alan helped across road, Edna’s shopping paid for) (Wednesday 0854)
  • Sarah Gorrell broadcasts Drive at 5 from the Nymans National Trust property and takes a look around an exhibition celebrating actress Vivien Leigh (Wednesday 1723)
  • BBC Surrey/Sussex
  • Simon Jenkins reports from Seaford where commuters are planning to protest about chaos caused by Southern Trains; Danny Pike’s phone- tackles the issue (Thursday 0920)
  • BBC Three Counties Radio
  • Andy Collins tackles the revamped recycling scheme in St Albans, with Matt Lockwood meeting disgruntled residents and an interview with a University of Buckingham expert (Wednesday 0720)
  • Jonathan Vernon Smith asks: do you have any sympathy for Tony Blair? There’s very little over the course of the phone-in (Thursday 0906)
  • Andy Collins talks to a yawning James Corden on the phone about High Wycombe, Los Angeles, his TV shows, Carpool Karaoke etc (Friday 0835)
  • BBC Tees
  • Jonathan Swingler accompanies John Hyde to the grave of his son who was killed in the Iraq war on the eve of the Chilcot report publication in an item for Lisa McCormick’s drivetime show (Tuesday 1717)
  • BBC Three Counties Radio
  • Roberto Perrone discusses subjects including the Nigel Farage and Chris Evans resignations, rent-to-own firms, freezer food safety, Jupiter, the Tory leadership and the future of EU nationals in the UK (Monday 1500)
  • BBC WM
  • Susan complains about a van driver who parked in the middle of the road on Caroline Martin’s Don’t Get Me Started phone-in (Thursday 1214)
  • “May or Leadsom?” asks Daz Hale, reporting from the streets of Erdington for the Danny Kelly show. “It’s just one big shambles. I haven’t a clue,” says the first woman he meets. “Andrea Leadsom is the voice of the people,” says a man. “Theresa May don’t stand no nonsense,” a woman insists (Friday 0938)
  • BBC Wiltshire
  • Marie Lennon goes for a walk with two Athelstan museum chiefs to visit the Moravian church it has bought to give it a new lease of life (Tuesday 1420)
  • Ian Longdon leads on Swindon’s plans to shut 11 of its 15 libraries with Mike Day reporting and a studio interview with the councillor responsible who talks about “the need to meet the new financial envelope” (!) (Tuesday 1709)
  • former railway workers Roy and Les reminisce about the traditional annual holiday in Weymouth, followed by an interview by Graham Rogers with Gerry, 82, who remembers fondly when the Dorset resort – and his mother’s guest house – was filled with Swindon folk (Thursday 1010)
  • Ben Prater (after fretting about the trunks-only rule at his French holiday camp) plays tennis with sports reporter Will Walder. Pupils at a Carne school analyse their technique (Friday 0725)
  • BBC Radio York
  • Georgey Spanswick includes audio of three Polish women in York on post-Brexit abuse plus an interview with the York Racial Equality Network (Monday 0708)
  • Jonathan Cowap meets Ellen, nine, and Beau, 10, winners of the York civic trust speaking competition for primary school children by debating Roman soldier v Viking warrior (Thursday 1012)