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Wings Over Scotland

The end of radio

Posted on August 16, 2013 by

We’re using that phrase in the sense of “the end of the universe”, we should say.


We’ve done interviews for radio in the BBC’s tiny Bath studio before, but this is the first time we’ve had to let ourselves in and do the whole thing solo.

After a week of shouting about how the Scottish media was conspicuously ignoring our recent Panelbase opinion poll, we were contacted yesterday by the Good Morning Scotland team to go in and record a few minutes for Saturday’s show on the subject. To cut a long and boring story short, we ended up entrusted with the external and internal door codes and some semi-comprehensible instructions which luckily turned out to be mostly unnecessary – all we actually had to do in the end was put the headphones on and push a couple of sliders and everything was good to go.


We chatted with Bill Whiteford, who asked some fair and reasonable questions about things like why we did the poll and what we thought of the results, and we don’t think we said anything too stupid in response.

(All answers were off-the-cuff. Trying to squeeze in pre-prepared soundbites in this sort of thing sounds fake and the results can be horrific. The downside is you invariably don’t get to make every point you wanted to, but that’s the lesser of two evils.)

The piece should be on sometime tomorrow, and the subject will apparently also be discussed with the ubiquitous (and perhaps only) Scottish psephologist Prof. John Curtice. Everything’s in the edit, of course, but we’re reasonably confident they won’t chop the tape up into individual syllables and reconstruct it to have us say “Independence smells of bums” or anything, so do tune in.


And if anyone’s interested in setting up an all-Jesus-And-Mary-Chain-all-the-time pirate station covering the south-west of England, obviously give us a call.

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    98 to “The end of radio”

    1. Alan MacD says:

      Back of the Net!!!

    2. balgayboy says:

      From small acorns does the giant oak grow.

    3. Geoff Huijer says:

      Hard work rewarded.
      Just the start…

    4. Juteman says:

      Any idea what time it will be on at?
      I tend to get enthusiastic with the Talisker on a Friday night, and enjoy a lie in. 🙂

    5. Rod Mac says:

      Us Horshoe drinkers tonight better ease up on ra bevvy so we can hear the Rev tomorrow.
      though I am sure someone will have it you tubed or whatever

    6. Tom Hogg says:

      So the story is not the polling results but the poll itself? Oh well, I suppose that’s something. 

    7. Caroline Corfield says:

      I’m quite pleased, even that the story is how the poll came about. I think if that’s the story it puts to bed this voter apathy stuff that sometimes pops out of the meeja’s mouths, which since they themselves suggest it becomes a self-fulfilling story, one which we collectively as interested punters with a hard working Web-meister have broken through. Yay for Rev Stu and Yay for us!

    8. Yesitis says:

      “Independence – smells – of – bums”
      That`s my line of the day 🙂

    9. Davy says:

      And from above, their came the voice of the “REV” and the muiltitude sang ‘a wid rather ha a panda than a prince’.
      Hail Alba.

    10. Craig M says:

      Well done Stu.
      Here’s a link to a news story about a Unionist politician with ambitions that match his ego, who has gained from the Union in financial terms and doesn’t want to see the Gravy Train end. In fact, he’s going for the big one! I feel sorry for my English neighbors.

    11. Arbroath 1320 says:

      Is it just me or does Rev Stu’s “appearance” on GMS tomorrow smell a wee bit like someone at BBC Radio Scotland pressing the panic button? 😆

    12. balgayboy says:

      “Independence smells of bums”
      BT has already made an erse of themselves already with so much verbal diarrhea  

    13. Peter says:

      “Pre-prepared” ???????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    14. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      ““Pre-prepared” ???????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

      If that’s a grammar quibble, I think the 33 punctuation marks undermine it a bit 😀

    15. mato21 says:

      Now you have the secret door codes can we expect you to make full use of them? In the interest of furthering the cause of course  That would teach them

    16. HandandShrimp says:

      I’m pleased. I was surprised the first crowd funded poll had gone unremarked upon when every fart in the Better Together office was front page news. I usually catch the Saturday morning show as I am pottering about and it still remains the least hostile arena on BBC Scotland for the moment at least (although I miss Derek Bateman).
      Foulkes is probably already at puce level while Blair is incandescent and demanding an explanation  🙂  

    17. Silverytay says:

      Arbroath 1320        
                                 I somehow don’t think it will be the people at BBC Radio Scotland pressing the panic button , it is more likely to be someone well above their heads who is starting to realise that by suppressing the poll it is having the opposite effect of what they wanted .
      When you start hiding or suppressing things people by their very nature go looking to find out what you are trying to hide or cover up .

    18. Seasick Dave says:

      Bill Whiteford is pretty good.
      I have no idea how he will vote in the Referendum and that, for a presenter, is exactly how it should be.
      I’m at the affshore in foreign pairts so not a chance of hearing it but wouldn’t mind a precis at some point 😉

    19. Jimbo says:

      I’ll be working.
      Hopefully some capable person will YouTube it.

    20. gordoz says:

      Sure this wont be contrived by Pacific quay into songs of praise ? or some fringe show exclusive. ?
      Still don’t trust them at all; not to spin it like an Andy Ritchie free kick. Specially with the good Professor in tow.

    21. Murray McCallum says:

      “”We have no idea why mirrors are there [on door]”
      Obviously health and safety gone mad.  I can see no step ladder in the room so obviously they could not be stuck on the ceiling as staff would have been in breach of said rules if caught balancing on chair or desk.

    22. Morag says:

      I promised to go over to help with the Yes Scotland stand at the Peebles Show tomorrow.  If I’m supremely lucky it’ll be on while I’m driving down the Lyne valley.  (It’ll probably be on first thing, about 6 am, when only the farmers will be listening.  And they’re going to vote Yes anyway.)

    23. Doug Daniel says:

      The door codes are probably the same at Pacific Quay. Maybe we should stage a takeover?
      Just to be sure about the editing Stu, did you say either “smells” or “bums” at any point during the interview?

    24. Tasmanian says:

      I’ll warm up my transcribing fingers. Although I’ll be away until probably Tuesday evening AEST.
      BBC Radio Bristol! My fifteen seconds of fame… If, a few years ago, you heard a bus driver playing ‘Clocks’ by Coldplay on an old piano and without a great deal of skill, that was me!

      I recognise Kingsmead Square – although I had to google-maps it to remember the name. Boston Tea Party, great cafe.

    25. jim mitchell says:

      Good luck rev!  BTw the Beeb are maybe using you as a guinea pig for something new in the money saving dept. studios with nobody in them, they send out instructions to guests as how to enter and use controls, then they link up with a central control, who does the rest, think of the money they would save on staff!
      Now if only they could think of a way to do it with TV.

    26. CameronB says:

      Well done Rev. for breaching the BBC’s ramparts.
      I am really at a loss why apparently intelligent people still believe in the BBC and it’s fabled impartiality. The BBC is the state broadcaster and the independence movement is probably the greatest threat to the continued existence of the British state, ever.
      Why can some people still not see that the BBC is employed by the British state, in its self-serving defense against Scottish independence?

    27. Juteman says:

      What if it was really a brainwashing studio, and those ‘headphones’ were planting pro-union messages into your brain?
      I await the Revs next article with interest.

    28. gordoz says:

      For anyone who doubts what this complaint about BBC Bias is all about at the end of the day.
      Try another station for info as they say.
      More power to the Wings’

    29. Embradon says:

      I’ll likely be on a bus to Aberdeen as TV requires that the Celtic match has a lunchtime KO. Hope to catch the I-player version.

    30. Garve says:

      I’ll be listening – of course if the fecking panda gives birth your interview will have to be punted due to lack of space!!!!

    31. Jon D says:

      Just back from Big Brians Debate;Peter McMahon was uncontroversial and forgettable, both Gordon McDonald & Alison Johnson were well informed and engaging.
      Sarah Boyack was openly ridiculed esp when pinned on her/SLabs stance on Trident; it was the usual we have an agenda to hold an open debate nonsense that we’ve come to expect. Similarly her  derogatory use of Salmond’s name, a la Lamont,  was shouted down by the audience.
      Interestingly, though, I spoke to a few strangers who were happy to openly admit that last year they were a definite No but were readily being persuaded- it totally confirmed what has been debated here that there are loads of soft (ie very soft) No’s out there. Mostly though, folk really want to talk about it all and obviously knew the media were being conservative with the truth.
      All in all an atmosphere more positive about change than not. An uplifting morning, and this in previously true blue David McLetchie country.

    32. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “What if it was really a brainwashing studio, and those ‘headphones’ were planting pro-union messages into your brain?”

      Don’t be stupid. Working with the BBC gives Wings the best of both worlds. It makes no sense to be fighting against the state broadcaster – we’re clearly better together.

    33. HandandShrimp says:

      Don’t be stupid. Working with the BBC gives Wings the best of both worlds. It makes no sense to be fighting against the state broadcaster – we’re clearly better together.

    34. Ghengis says:

      LOL … Nooooooo!

    35. Juteman says:

      Nice one. 🙂

    36. Thistle says:

      Oh dear Andrew Marr… warning don’t read if you have problem with blood pressure.

    37. G H Graham says:

      A small step in the right direction to be treated with healthy scepticism of course.
      I’m even more surprised by the shabby little unmanned BBC office. While one data points can’t be used as an indicator of a trend, it does hint at where all those billions in License revenues end up, London of course. 

    38. Andy-B says:

      Bath today, BBC Broadcating House London’re on your way Rev.
      straight to the top.

    39. Macart says:

      Pictures closing scene of invasion of the body snatchers……
      Donald Sutherland points and screams. (shudders) 😮

    40. ronald alexander mcdonald says:

      Prepare to have the poll completely ripped to threads. They will insinuate that you are a rabid Independence supporter, who instigated an unorthodox, unreliable poll only because NO has a strong lead.    

    41. Gordon Bain says:

      I’m not working tomorrow so alarm clock will be set. Great news though.
      O/T – did you happen to notice what headphones they provided for you? I have a ‘thing’ about cans, don’t ask.

    42. gordoz says:

      Rev : 
      Someone said wee Johann Lamont was down in Bath and was to be next on after you. They said she nipped out for some biscuits and never came back …. is that right?, cause apparently the same think happened at Scottish labour HQ. She popped out at the start of the summer for some ‘BT direction’ and nobody has seen her since ?

    43. Jon D says:

      This e-petition,  BBC coverage of the Scottish independence Referendum should be impartial and balanced,  has only got 1.167 signatures
      Let’s get it out there.

    44. Arbroath 1320 says:

      Petition duly signed. :D:

    45. gordoz says:

      Thistle says:
      16 August, 2013 at 3:19 pm

      Oh dear Andrew Marr… warning don’t read if you have problem with blood pressure.

      On A. Marr (its a bit Rory Bremner really… been away too long and viewing from afar) his words could be spun several ways. But the undertone was clear nationalism is anti – english in Scotland in his view (entitled to it ; but way out of date).
      Back to work way too early; send him a link to wings Rev

      petition in (cheers for the heads up)

    46. twenty14 says:

      Now ………wait for tomorrow’s headlines
      WoS team break into BBC offices, after gaining access codes, and, using official recording equipment, record there own show disguised as a BBC news report with the sole intention of sneaking in unchecked, biased Independence information in lieu of official BBC biased news information re: Independence

    47. HandandShrimp says:

      Was not expecting to enjoy this but was in fact pleasantly surprised. Pretty fair and balanced. Given the guy has been out of commission following his stroke he has a better handle on things than current working journalists in Scotland.

    48. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “O/T – did you happen to notice what headphones they provided for you? I have a ‘thing’ about cans, don’t ask.”

      They appear to be Sennheisers, don’t ask me what model.

    49. Rod Mac says:

      twenty14 says:
      16 August, 2013 at 4:15 pm

      Now ………wait for tomorrow’s headline
      Naw by now the spooks will have Horseshoe cellar loaded with “marzipan” and pistols to raid it when we are all debating Lager versus Heavy

    50. gordoz says:

      twenty14 says:
      16 August, 2013 at 4:15 pm

      Now ………wait for tomorrow’s headlines
      Love it ……… thats exactly how they’ll spin it

    51. beachthistle says:

      Not wanting to burst the celebration balloon because this is definitely a positive step forward – but if I was Boothman or somebody in Pacific Quay senior management and I was wanting to cover my/the BBC’s back, in case of future audit by OSCE or somebody, I’d put a piece about our poll out on Saturday morning (damage limitation audience-wise, it being no accident the Saturday edition has recently always been more balanced than the weekday programmes) and I wouldn’t do it live – so to be completely in control of what  – and what doesn’t – get said/broadcast…

    52. Silverytay says:

      I hope everyone who is going to the pub in Glasgow tonight has a great night out , you never know you might even be able to convert a few people to the cause .
      Before you know it bitter together will be trying to ban wings supporters from pubs as we will be converting people to yes while they are under the influence .

    53. Boorach says:

      @ Silvetay
      it’s Glasgow not Falkirk! 🙂

    54. Bobby McKail says:

      Well done Rev and everyone else who either donated or spread the message on the many forums around the internet. Do you  think they would have probably ignored it if John Curtice hadn’t analysed it on ‘what Scotland thinks’?

    55. Silverytay says:

                  It’s Glasgow I have on the post .
      O/T  Does anyone know where I can buy a Saltire Flag with YES on it .

    56. twenty14 says:

      There’s a wee guy on a mobility scooter selling them 🙂

    57. Martin Cunningham says:

      Hmmm …. the cynic in me is saying the BBC are pulling a fast one. I’d like to know the figures, but I bet fewer people listen to GMS at the weekend. A bit like the numbers who read newspapers.

      The BBC will claim they have now given you coverage, so any arguments about being biased can be dismissed.

      We all know, if a poll had been released with results that were favouravble to the NO campaign, representatives from Better Together wouldn’t have been relegated to the weekend slot.

    58. If anyone wants a recording of tomorrows GMS(Saturday), I record every week for punishment, so can make a full recording available if anyone wants one.

    59. Morag says:

      Early Saturday morning seems to be their token spot for some balanced debate.  I hear it about every five weeks, because I work a one-in-five Saturday rota.  Whereas I hear the weekday slot every morning.
      Anyone who thinks the Saturday slot gets as many listeners as the weekday programmes is living in cloud cuckoo land.

    60. Silverytay says:

                         His are to small for me  lol
      looking for something about 5 x 3 to take to the next Scotland game and the march in Sept .

    61. Boorach says:

      @ Silvertay
      Wasn’t getting at you, just having a clumsy dig at how Unite were ‘reputedly’ recruiting in Falkirk

    62. Silverytay says:

                     It’s Friday night , I am not quite with it .
      As an ex labour member I have to say that unite have not actually done anything wrong .
      The one good thing from our point of view is if Ed keeps on distancing himself from the unions , union members might just begin to think there is another way other than blindly following labour .

    63. Firestarter says:

      Sennheisers ….. at least something at the BBC is “quality”! 🙂
      To those in the pub ………. hope you’re having a great night ( I can imagine 🙂 ) . Had hoped to be there …….. maybe next time. Slainte 🙂

    64. BobW says:

      @morag 2:something o’clock

      GMS Saturday 8:00 – 10:00

    65. BobW says:


      You might find these useful – 3 PDF files fully resizeable with no degradation of the image. Could be use for banners or T-shirts URL.pdf IATR.pdf

    66. Silverytay says:

               Love it 

    67. Dave McEwan Hill says:

      Radio. I believe that in the next decade most radio will be on broadband which has very few reception problems and can be listened to all across the world online.
      It costs a lot less than £2000 to set up a functioning online radio station. Wings should think it a possible next step  

    68. Dee says:

      Well done Rev on your radio debut.  I sincerely hope that they can arrange an interview on Newsnight Scotland or Reporting Scotland.  The thing I have always found regarding the Saturday morning show, is that it is the one that the Yes campaign are aloud to rebutt the shit that they had been getting thrown at them all week, almost patronising the pro Indy camp. Then you ask why are they allowing a rebuttal on a Saturday morning, and the only conclusion I can think of is that they think that not as many people will hear their rebuttal.  But it is a great start to gaining more media exposure and long may it continue.

    69. Linda's back says:

      Radio is a start and it gives the BBC a fig leaf when accused of bias but the vast majority of people get their political opinions from the “national” TV news at 10 pm failing which 6 p.m.
      That is where the democratic deficit exists for all indigenous Scottish political parties not just the SNP.

    70. Hetty says:

      I have a friend who used to work for Unite, she said they thought she was a communist for her left wing views. In fact no disrespect to her and I know she wouldn’t read this site no matter how hard I try, but she’s certainly more middle politically and the royal supporting I quite like the queen type, ie not communist.
      What do unions do now? who do they work for? Who pays them?

    71. Molly says:

      Hetty , I read something once along the lines of “10 million speeches yet they die in misery and deception “. 
      Although not aimed at Britain, I always thought that line(and I paraphrased ) pretty much covers  our political system and I include the unions in the system.
      Am I a communist ? No just someone disillusioned with the self serving merry go round they have tried to pass off as governance in particular over the last 30 years.
      The badly quoted line was Fidel Castro defending himself in 1953 by the way , plus ca change etc.

    72. Patrick Roden says:

      @ Hetty,  “What do unions do now? who do they work for? Who pays them?”
      That is a very good question. I had a dispute once with the NHS and went to my union, ‘Unison’
      I believed I would get support from my union against a very poor manager who had a history of making poor decisions.
      I was amazed at how badly I was repeatedly let down by them, but during a very heated exchange, they felt under a lot of pressure and blurted out that they were paid by the NHS and the office space was gifted to them by the NHS who I was in dispute with.
      They were also invited to all the ‘Big Events’ staged by the NHS.
      I asked them when this all started but by this time they had calmed down and became very evasive.
      I wrote to the chairman of Unison and told him he was no better than a Mafia Boss, running a so called ‘protection Racket’
      I copied the letter to Gordon Brown, David Cameron and Nick Clegg.
      This was when GB was the prime minister.
      The only response I got was to pass the buck as none of them had an answer for me.

    73. Alfresco Dent says:

      There’s been nothing in the programme’s headlines thus far.

    74. Gillean says:

      The Rev done well in the interview. No beemur there. Well done.

    75. Cearc says:

      Well done, Stuart.

    76. Cearc says:

      Well done, Stuart. 
      Nice to put a voice to the words as well.

    77. Alfresco Dent says:

      Well done Rev, loved it. You don’t sound in reality like you previously did in my head, lol. The Prof was his usual self – clumsy. Am I the only one who sensed that Bill Whiteford knew where the Prof wanted to take it and so tried to restrain him?

    78. Graeme Purves says:

      Bravo Rev. Stuart!  That was a very valuable and constructive contribution to the Referendum debate.

    79. Baheid says:

      He knew exactly where Curtice would want to take it that’s why he was on after the Rev.
      Easy to have a go at the poll when there is no one there to defend.
      PS, Prof said something about Yes not giving details of their polls.
      Do Yes do their own polling or do they use recognised pollsters ?

    80. Cearc says:

      Stu’s organisation, was referred to.  Time to tidy up the paperclips and widgets.

    81. The space monsters question bit us on the arse.

    82. ianbeag says:

      Good interview and Bill Whiteford was fair in his questioning – Kaye please note. Even Curtice maintained a degree of impartiality. More important, Whiteford mentioned Wings on three occasions to bring the title to the wider masses. Some good points in respect of the questions asked when planning the next one. Rev, your poll could be a milestone on the route to a YES vote in 396 days. 

    83. Cearc says:

      The space monsters question bit us on the arse.
      I totally disagree.  Not only did it succeed in getting publicity (eventually) it was a serious question.  The outcome that invasion by Russia or China is considered less likely than by space aliens is not good news for military money boys .  You need a viable enemy to sell weapons.

    84. scottish_skier says:

      PS, Prof said something about Yes not giving details of their polls.Do Yes do their own polling or do they use recognised pollsters ?

      To clarify… if a poll is conducted by a member of the BPC and actual numbers are published, then the pollster is obliged to report full tables/methodology. If they don’t, they risk being in trouble with the BPC.

      If an organisation (e.g. SNP) commissions a poll but doesn’t report hard numbers, there is no need for the pollster to publish tables. The organisation could say ‘we’re finding things are shifting in our direction’ and that wouldn’t be enough to justify tables. If they said ‘Our latest poll shows 39% Y / 42% N’ then that would be into tables territory. Ultimately, it is the BPC that decides though. If it feels the pollster should have reported and has not, it will ask them to.

      If an organisation (e.g. the SNP, YesScotland) does its own survey not using a BPC pollster, then there is no obligation to report details at all. However, if they don’t publish details then they leave it to the public to trust how much they believe what has been said.

    85. scottish_skier says:

      Only hard-line unionists would mock the space monsters question and they’d be doing so not because they did really think it stupid, but because they’re pissed off.

      Pretty much everyone else who took an interest in the story would think it quirky and funny.

    86. Baheid says:

      ‘The space monsters question bit us on the arse.’
      The question did exactly what it was supposed to do.
      The public believe there’s more chance of invasion by space monsters than the ridiculous notion, (given by BT & the likes), that we might be targeted by the likes of North Korea.
      Mr. Curtice loyally gave the no gang/msm a excuse/reason not to print/debate.

    87. Baheid says:


    88. Molly says:

      Patrick Roden -ditto

    89. Disagree, folks. As SS says ” Only hard-line unionists would mock the space monsters question” but that is exactly what the BBC did! . IMHO, it would be O.K to use that type of questions when you have high public awareness that this site is place to come to, if people think they are being told Unionist B.S. But that at present, is not they case. The results of the poll suggest that the site has only been heard of by 8% of the population, that’s only 80 people in the sample! That IS the problem. If we’re going to win this thing, and I think we can, we have to get the visibility of this site up, so it is natural for the undecided to come here to look for info. I don’t think that question helped our cause, but as the Rev says we’re new to this game.

    90. Rev. Stuart Campbell says:

      “You might find these useful – 3 PDF files fully resizeable with no degradation of the image. Could be use for banners or T-shirts”

      Bob, two of those URLs are broken due to spaces in the filenames, so the images can’t be seen.

    91. BobW says:

      Rev Stu.

      They can if you copy the full line, rather than click on the URL. 😉

    92. ianbrotherhood says:

      @Neil MacKenzie-
      Thanks for that. It’s interesting to hear the snideness out of the veteran Angus McLeod (sp?) just prior to Rev’s piece – as smug and cheap as it is nasty.

    93. Firestarter says:

      re the Space Monsters question – I think it is actually this type of thing that sets the Yes campaign apart from the No campaign. Good humour, positivity and fun. YES is a positive message ……… we can, we should, we will. Whereas ‘NO’ does exactly what it says on the tin …. No, ye cannae…. No, ye shouldnae …………. Naw, ye willnae!
      I know which side I’d rather be on … and that’s even if we DIDNT have all the moral, philosophical and economical arguments on our side.

    94. BobW says:

      Rev Stu.

      I’ve slightly modified the files, making the white areas in the original graphics ‘punched through’, rather than overlayed white. That should mean that they’ll print on any colour of background, with that colour showing through, rather than being white.

      Uploaded with clickable URLs here-


    95. BobW, that is brill. 
      Rev, should this no be somewhere that everybody can find? (O.K. I know it’s here, but few people go back to “old” comments).

    96. BobW says:

      The first of the three files,I created,  is still located at the URL displayed up-thread.

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