Radio 1's Greg James Defends BBC In Wake Of Recent Headlines

BBC Radio 1's Greg James
BBC Radio 1's Greg James

BBC Radio 1's Greg James

Greg James has said he “really believes” in the BBC as he defended the broadcaster from recent controversy.

The corporation has been in the headlines over the last few weeks thanks to an impartiality row involving sports presenter Gary Lineker.

The Match Of The Day host was asked to “step back” from the show – before later being reinstated – after he posted a tweet criticising a new government migrant policy.

Greg, who hosts the BBC Radio 1 Breakfast Show, was asked on his thoughts on the matter during an interview with The Times.

While he said he couldn’t “specifically talk about Lineker, because it’s ongoing”, the broadcaster – who is in the top 10 earners at the BBC – said he is certain the corporation will weather the storm.

Asked if working for the BBC is “increasingly tricky” due to “the political hassle”, Greg replied: “I really believe in the BBC. There is nowhere else I want to do live radio. All corporations have moments when things don’t go well. Think of the big BBC crises over the past 20 years — Ross and Brand, Top Gear. Everyone moves on.”

The presenter – who is fronting his first reality TV show Rise & Fall, which launches on Sunday night – said of the scrutiny BBC talent can face: “But these jobs are supposed to be hard!

“My job is really well paid and high pressure. I think about it deeply,” he said, adding it is “not my job” to share opinions online.

“It’s not what I want for myself or people want from me. I advocate for inclusivity and fairness, but it doesn’t matter what people think I believe,” he added.

Gary Lineker returned to air on Saturday after BBC director general Tim Davie said there would be an independent review of the corporation’s social media guidance in light of the controversy.