“Listen to the people” say save Something for the Weekend campaigners

As 4,000 RT users vote to save "hangover telly" from the axe, we talk to the woman leading the charge

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Director-general Mark Thompson should heed the pleas of BBC licence fee payers, says the campaign to save BBC2’s Something for the Weekend.

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“I would ask Mark Thompson to listen to the people who watch his channels and pay the licence fee,” said Claire Lynch, the fan who began the campaign to save the Sunday-morning show from the corporation’s cost-cutting plans.

Speaking exclusively to RadioTimes.com, Lynch, 30, said: “We understand that cuts need to be made and money needs to be saved, but taking away a programme that has constantly high ratings – and that people are willing to fight to save – isn’t the way to do it.”

Lynch started the campaign on Friday after hearing of the show’s imminent demise via Facebook. A BBC spokesperson today confirmed that Something for the Weekend will finish after its current run at the end of March, but declined to comment further.

“I saw the news on [resident chef] Simon [Rimmer]’s Facebook page,” said Lynch. “I’m a vegetarian and the show always features at least one veggie dish a week – and you don’t need a Michelin star to cook them.

“I like the boys’ banter – it’s just easy to watch when you’re hungover,” she added, echoing the sentiments of Charlatans frontman Tim Burgess, who called the programme an “institution of hangover telly”.

Since Lynch began her campaign on Facebook it has gained 21,000 fans, helped encourage over 2,600 phone complaints to the BBC – along with hundreds more emails to Mark Thompson himself – and drawn the support of celebrity tweeters, including former guests Brian Cox and Burgess.

Meanwhile, a RadioTimes.com poll published yesterday has so far received over 4,200 votes, with a staggering 96 per cent in favour of saving the show.

Users also posted comments making their feelings about the decision clear.

“For heaven’s sake do not axe this show. It brightens up Sunday mornings,” said Keith Riley.

“Appalling decision,” said flkrjd. “It’s a programme that can be, and is, enjoyed by all the family…”

“Once again the BBC proves that it is a law unto itself. It never listens,” said dave bluto.  

“It makes no sense that the BBC insist on axeing their most popular, innovative and most appreciated shows in favour of cheap, poorly made and virtually unwatched tat like Cash in the Attic and Flog It,” added RS Yorkshire.   

“If they want to save money. They should get rid of weekday television between 9am and 3pm – most people are otherwise engaged during those hours.”

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The BBC Trust is currently considering proposals to replace all of BBC2’s daytime output with repeats as part of the Delivering Quality First money-saving measures.