Nigel Farage’s GB News move will ‘shake up stale’ British broadcasting – BBC warned

Nigel Farage announces his new show on GB News

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The former Brexit Party leader was speaking to the Sunday Express ahead of the launch of his new primetime political show on GB News which is due to begin on Monday at 7pm. The new Farage hour will run from 7pm to 8pm on Mondays to Thursdays in a bid to mimic the successful model of political prime time broadcasts in the USA and Australia.

It is intended that the program will eventually be followed by veteran broadcaster Andrew Neil’s hour-long show when he returns from his break after the summer.

It also comes ahead of the new news channel becoming the first television station to simultaneously run on digital radio as GB News continues to make new innovations in the British broadcast market.

“My previous incarnations of shaking the country up – Ukip, Brexit Party I am about being a disruptor,” Mr Farage told the Sunday Express.

“I am about seeing models that are broken and out of date and out of touch. I see as big a gap in the market for this as I saw for Ukip in 2010.”

He went on: “In 2010 I thought ‘wow we have got Cameron, we have got Clegg, we have got Miliband. I can’t put a cigarette paper between them on anything. There’s a massive opportunity here for Ukip.’

“I now see broadcasters all pushing the same kind of agenda, doing pretty much the same as they have done for decades. People are bored with it, they have had enough of it, they keep turning it off. They turn it back on like a drug. Then they can’t bear it and turn it back off again. 

“I think there’s a huge opportunity here to reshape broadcasting. I think there is a huge opportunity here to reverse the Londonisation, metropolitisation of our entire political argument where everything is looked at through that lens.

“Even the Sunderland [Nissan investment] announcement was portrayed on Channel 4 as being one little ray of sunshine amidst all the bleak, black news. I couldn’t believe it. I thought ‘wow! This is amazing.’

“I listen to Radio 4 and I want to slash my wrists.”

He said that the move to DAB or digital radio where people can plug their devices into their cars to listen to the show was as significant for shaking up a market where the BBC has more than 50 per cent of the audience share.

“It will be a few more weeks before it is ready to go we have got the licence though. So we are not just competing with BBC New and Sky etc. We are competing with Radio 5, Radio 4, Talk News LBC. We are competing against these things as well.

“Listenership on talk radio is nearly 50 per cent  people in cars.  We spend a huge amount of our lives in cars.”

He also suggested that the changes in broadcasting which GB News represents could spell the end for the BBC.

“One million people in the last two years have stopped paying the BBC licence. That’s a lot of people. 

“They have decided we are not having that any more we are moving on. I think the persecution of the over 75s is the most incredible case of shooting yourself in the foot. We are moving away from our traditional means of getting news.”

He noted that among the people downloading the GB News app around 22 percent of the audience were 16 to 34-year-olds.

He added: “I will say this. I still think things like BBC World Service are good for global Britain. Jed Bush, who i don’t normally agree with, said ‘isn’t it funny how brilliant the bBC are at global broadcasting and how biassed they are at domestic broadcasting.’ I would agree with that.”

He noted that other traditional broadcasters are in trouble too.

“ITV evening news in 1990 had 12 million people, it now never gets 1 million. That’s one stat that is absolutely stark and shows you want the change is.”

He added: “You will see a narrative that says GB News launched too early, the tech wasn’t ready, the sounds not been great, the picture has not been perfect, the studio sets were not what they need to be. You will read all of that.

“But I will say to you is that is all true. There were problems just as there were when BBC News launched in the 1990s. I understand BBC 2 in 1964 was so comedy it even went off air. These problems do happen.

“You can laugh about the sound quality in the first few days but actually in terms of being in the vanguard of where multi-media is going I think these guys have got it.

“I’m excited about it. I spent my years in politics and journalism at LBC and Fox News for three years as well.”

He is still angry about his removal from LBC for calling out the Marxist policies of the Black Lives Matter Movement but said there is “no point” in giving the “cancel culture mob the comfort of hearing me complain.” 

He added: “I don’t use the word woke, cancel culture is much closer to the truth. I have lots of experience of broadcasting. At LBC I had the highest share of any of their presenters.

“British broadcasting is so stale in terms of the rolling news channels it is almost unwatchable. I find myself turning off in anger at so much of the biassed content.”

He will continue his Sunday morning Political Correction Show with former trade unionist Paul Embery and Conservative MP “star of the future” Dehenna Davison which he describes as “civil political debate”.

“The biggest disagreement we had was when Paul said he was surprised I couldn’t remember the 66 World Cup final,” he joked.

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