The BBC - biased in favour of shooting?

By Andrew Gilruth, GWCT Director of Communications

Mark Avery, the RSPB’s former conservation director has refused to go back on the BBC Farming Today programme - he feels that its editing of an interview we both took part in last year was biased.

Dimitri HoutartBBC coverage more balanced?

Dimitri Houtart, the BBC Rural Affairs Champion, bravely attended a Game Fair panel discussion at Hatfield – the title: “What’s the BBC’s problem with Fieldsports?”. These events can be full of surprises but few in the drafty tent were expecting to hear that the BBC has been accused of bias in favour shooting.

BBC disconnected?

Dimitri explained that the BBC “does not want people [in the countryside] to feel disconnected”. He feels his biggest barrier is finding people that work in our countryside - that are willing and able to speak on the BBC.

Would you be willing to speak to the BBC?

The BBC say they can’t access those on the ground – to hear the reality from individuals and their experiences. This is problematic because famers and gamekeepers don’t sit at a desk all day and few are used to speaking to journalists. 

Can we help you?

Like most organisations, we have our own press people but if you would be interested in speaking on air or even filmed in a BBC studio, why not let us know? The next time they ask to speak to someone with your experience, where you are, we can let you know – the choice is then yours. Simply complete the short form below:



at 19:34 on 29/08/2017 by Michael Yardley

I have on many occasions (100s) supported field sports and shooting in particular on TV and radio. This is a tough job to do well. In the past I have made documentaries for the BBC on a variety of topics. Recently on the BBC a representative of the LACS would not answer my question: "how would you control deer in Britain". He was pressed by the BBC presenter but still would not risk comment...

The promotion of our rural life.

at 15:54 on 23/08/2017 by Alec Swan.

The voice of Middle England (and elsewhere!) needs to stand up and speak up. Those who would influence our rural existence, and in the process cause untold damage to the wildlife which they would purport to represent, are few in number but vociferous and funded, all so often, by those with political agendas. It's time for the common man to stand up on his back feet and give reasoned and logical argument in support of not just ourselves, but in the process our environment and the wildlife with which we live.

Bias in the media

at 20:18 on 22/08/2017 by John Clements

I have been contacting both BBC and independent television for over 10 yearsabout instances of bias in broadcasts from misinformation about shooting and its positive impact on wildlife to disproportionate levels of shotgun crime in t.v. drama. My communications are, at best, replied to in a condescending way or just ignored. My question is how many times have the BBC been accused of being pro shooting ? How does that compare with how often they have been accused of being anti shooting?

BBC access

at 18:04 on 22/08/2017 by Ted Williams

All my adult life I have felt those who didn't know, but had the ear of the media, had the opportunity to misrepresent the rural scene. Occasionally disgraceful, often just unfortunately incorrect, their views are circulated widely and believed. I cheer when balance is struck,recently through GWCT involvement. I am 49, mixed farming with my family since leaving school at 16. I have a passion for family, the country, nature, field sports,and my happy tribe of spaniels ! The relevance of GWCT research has never been greater,as long as it is heard clearly, especially by policy makers.

BBC and Fieldsports

at 13:30 on 22/08/2017 by ELIZABETH RHYS-JONES

I think we would all support a sensible debate on field sports and as a supporter I too am very concerned about the Animal rights lobbyists spreading misinformation, failing to listen to to our point of view. The current 'campaign' against grouse shooting is fairly typical. All the facts pro and con were aired in Parliament last year in a sensible debate and the conclusion was that grouse shooting and moorland management should continue and is good for conservation. I worry about the BBC providing a balanced view in the light of the recent interview with Ian Botham on his scheme to provide grouse to the underprivileged The interviewer.hardly let Mr Botham describe the scheme and insisted on portraying shooting as a cruel sport, which is not why the interview was requested.

happy to work with media

at 11:55 on 22/08/2017 by mark crampton smith

Been a part-time keeper most of my life (now over 60) and seen huge changes in the countryside. Passionate about conservation and and the part that feildsports play in that. Concerned about the gulf in understanding of what is happening in the countryside where the Animal Rights lobbyists are so well funded in spreading misinformation and the historical perspective is completely ignored.

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