Response from BBC to Petition 19/20 May 2015

UPDATE 21 MAY 2015

On 19 May we sent the petition signed by 2800+ to BBC at Springwatch – on 20 May Rosemary Edwards BBC Springwatch editor replied:

Subject: Re: Nightingale broadcast request
Sent: 20 May 2015 18:26

Dear Chris, Thank you for your correspondence.  I have read your letter to the Spirngwatch team and I totally agree that hearing a nightingale is truly one of life’s magical moments and therefore something we would always be interested in sharing through Springwatch if it was ever logistically possible. We come to Minsmere with a completely open mind. Our mission is always to reflect the sights and sounds of the wildlife we can find there at this specific time of year. Sometimes we are lucky and sometimes we are not I am afraid.
In terms of the nightingale we have tended to find that our transmission dates (May 25 – June 11 this year), is just slightly late for nightingales and so they often evade us. They will continue to be on our list but are something we can never guarantee. I have spoken to the executive producers responsible for wildlife coverage on Radio 4 and I have been told the Nightingale has been featured in the series ‘Tweet of the Day’ along with the famous BBC sound track with cello. I believe Tweet of the Day tomorrow (May 21) will also feature the Thrush Nightingale. I do hope that helps and thank you again for your letter.
Best Wishes
Rosemary Edwards Series Editor Winterwatch, Autumnwatch & Springwatch  Room A0.1, NPC,  BBC Broadcasting House,  Whiteladies Road, Bristol, BS8 2LR

Chris Rose wrote back: (20 May 2015 21:25)

Thanks very much Rosemary it is kind of you to take the time to reply when you must be very busy

I hope it turns out that Springwatch can air a Nightingale singing.  Maybe, whether that happens or not, you and colleagues can help persuade planners in the BBC to set up some microphones in the first week or two of May next year, somehwere that there are reliable Nightingales ? I now have lots of on the ground contacts with people who could help

If you get the chance, please also point out to the R4 planners that while programmes celebrating the original 1924 broadcast are interesting culturally, and Tweet of the Day is lovely, the birds concerned are probably already dead.   This is part of the problem – repeating broadcasts of old recordings keeps the impression of Nightingales alive and salient in the public ear and mind, while the real thing dies out.  A sort of media museum effect and without the electrifying connection “in the moment” of live radio.

Hence the ask of the petition is for a live broadcast which has authenticity, veracity and immediacy. Good luck with Springwtach.    Chris

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