WMN Letter: We do not wish to be associated with this
I read with interest the excellent leading article contained in the edition of the paper dated August 29 last. This related to Chris Packham, a presenter of the BBC Springwatch and Autumnwatch programmes. The article was quite rightly critical of Mr Packham’s description of the badger cull as “shameful slaughter carried out by brutalist thugs, liars and frauds”.
You may wonder what this has to do with the Lynton & Lynmouth Cliff Railway.
The reason is that some six weeks ago the cliff railway allowed the BBC Countryfile producers to send a camera crew to the cliff railways to do a feature for the edition of that programme which went out on the August bank holiday Sunday. May I say that the actual presenter who was the “on-camera” member of the BBC team was the much respected and highly professional John Craven. The BBC staff and camera crew were all marvellous and extremely anxious not to be a nuisance or get in the way. The same applied to the BBC team who did an article for the Michael Portillo “Great British Railways” programme earlier in the year.
The cliff railway is a tourist attraction within the Exmoor National Park and we are therefore part of the whole spectrum of the park and those who keep it as the magnificent spectacle that it is. This includes farmers and landowners, many of whom have suffered the effects of TB in their cattle linked to the uncontrolled number of badgers, some of which spread the disease.
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Valid until: Tuesday, December 31 2013
We do not wish to be linked, even indirectly, to a BBC programme one of the presenters of which uses the emotive language of the worst factions of the animal rights movement. That the BBC should disown Mr Packham’s remarks is nonsense, if he had vilified the Archbishop of Canterbury in the same way, the BBC would sack him.
by John Ireland, Chairman, Lynton & Lynmouth Cliff Railway