Former Blue Peter presenter Yvette Fielding has called for the reinstatement of the children’s show to BBC1.
“I am angry that it has been moved from BBC1 to CBBC,” Fielding says in the new issue of Radio Times. “It deserves to be on mainstream television, not on the digital channel. People seem to forget that it’s not just a kids’ show, it’s a family show, and a generation of children and their parents are missing out because it’s less accessible. It should be on BBC1, just before Pointless.”
Blue Peter, which began life in 1958 and is now the longest-running children’s television programme in the world, transferred from BBC1 onto the digital channel CBBC in December 2012, along with the rest of the corporation’s children’s output.
Fielding (centre) with Caron Keating (left) and Mark Curry (right) in her Blue Peter days
Fielding – who presented the show from 1987 and 1992 and is now a contestant on the new series of Celebrity MasterChef – also expresses surprise that she was recently voted the nation’s favourite Blue Peter presenter in a poll of RadioTimes.com users.
“When I heard the results, I actually cried! I just couldn’t believe it, I thought it must have been a joke,” she comments.
In the same issue, Richard Marson – former editor of Blue Peter – says that scheduled television is itself becoming an anachronism and success of children’s shows is often measured in the number of iPlayer views.
“The idea that kids are waiting for anything to be scheduled on a channel is increasingly a piece of his history,” he says.
Read the full interview with Yvette Fielding in this week’s issue of Radio Times magazine, available from 9th June from the shops and digital newsstand