Londoner’s Diary: no levelling up for Gove — does the BBC have a lift problem?

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·4-min read
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  • Michael Gove
    British politician (born 1967)
  • Jane Hill
    British newsreader
  • Nick Robinson
    Nick Robinson
    American actor
Michael Gove stuck in a lift at the BBC  (Jack Lamport/Twitter)
Michael Gove stuck in a lift at the BBC (Jack Lamport/Twitter)

After Michael Gove got stuck in a BBC lift this morning, does the BBC have an elevator problem?

Communities Minister Gove was supposed to appear on Radio 4’s Today programme at 8.10 but didn’t make the slot as he was stuck in a lift for half an hour. Today presenter Nick Robinson said: “Mr Gove is stuck in the Broadcasting House lift. I wish I could say this is a joke — it is not a joke”. Gove did eventually make it on air.

The Londoner wonders if there is a wider issue with the lifts at the Corporation. Last week Jane Hill, who was presenting the News at 10, was trapped soon before going on air.

“Just been stuck in a lift at Broadcasting House. Only about 5 mins in the end, but with only 20 mins to News at Ten” Hill wrote online. “As I emerged a nice man trying to help said “Oh it’s good it started moving again, sometimes people are stuck a really long time’”.

This morning Robinson added to listeners: “It is not very funny for Mr Gove and a security man who have been stuck there for some time”. When he did emerge, Gove wasn’t angry, and quipped: “After half an hour in the lift, you have successfully levelled me up”.

The BBC told us this morning: “We’re sorry Mr Gove was stuck in one of our lifts, but we’re glad he was later able to take part in the interview”.

A source at the BBC tells us the lifts: "They do make an awful racket.. like a sort of incessant clunking sound — lots of complaints about it.”

Djalili rues his typecasting moan

Omid Djalili (AFP via Getty Images)
Omid Djalili (AFP via Getty Images)

OMID DJALILI feels partially to blame for the trend of actors only being cast in parts if they are the same ethnicity as the character. The comic and actor, who was born in Chelsea to Iranian parents, recalls complaining in the Nineties, when he starred in films like The Mummy: “I’m born and raised here, [but] all I can play is terrorist number three.”

But it’s a case of be careful what you wish for, Djalili says, laughing to The Bunker podcast that “I kind of regret it now because I haven’t been offered an Arab role in years”. Last week, actor Maureen Lipman made a stir when she said that Oscar-winner Helen Mirren should not play former Israeli PM Golda Meir because Mirren is not Jewish.

Tempest: Sacrifice will create magic

Kae Tempest
Kae Tempest

KAE TEMPEST is determined to find the silver linings of the pandemic. “I think it will create even more moments of deep magic, because we’ve made some sacrifices,” the poet, left, says. “Often in the moment before a great revelation in all the old stories, the protagonist makes some sacrifice… we’ve made this huge sacrifice,” they tell NME, adding: “When we go properly back into live music and live performance, I think it’s going to be incredible.” After Covid, the flood.

SW1A

Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi (Aaron Chown/PA) (PA Wire)
Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi (Aaron Chown/PA) (PA Wire)

EDUCATION Secretary Nadhim Zahawi says the best way to fight high energy bills is to ensure “there’s a job available” for people. But Chris Curtis, a pollster, claimed when he first started work at a company Zahawi founded, he was “paid below the London living wage”, had a second job and had to max out his overdraft.

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EX-DEFENCE secretary Geoff Hoon caused a stir last week after reports that his memoirs include a claim that he was ordered to burn a memo casting doubt on the legality of the Iraq war. Former fellow Labour minister Jacqui Smith says that’s why she won’t write her story, “because I don’t want to s**t on my colleagues”. Smith is not impressed byHoon’s words, telling her podcast For the Many: “If he really felt he was being asked to do something that was wrong, he should have said something at the time?”

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