BBC Home
Explore the BBC
BBC News
Launch consoleBBC NEWS CHANNEL
Last Updated: Wednesday, 17 August 2005, 10:14 GMT 11:14 UK
Ford hits back at Buerk remarks
Anna Ford
Anna Ford said Buerk had failed to keep up with progress
BBC newsreader Anna Ford has hit back at comments made by fellow newsreader Michael Buerk about women in broadcasting, calling him "bonkers".

Ford, one of the BBC's longest-serving female newscasters, said there was "no hope for him" after he made the remarks in a Radio Times interview.

She told the Daily Telegraph that Buerk was a "miserable old bat" for railing against women in top broadcasting jobs.

Veteran broadcaster Joan Bakewell dismissed Buerk's remarks as "a hoot".

Bakewell said she welcomed the rising profile of women executives at the BBC after decades of "patriarchy".


Ford told the newspaper: "He's bonkers. He's a dear old-fashioned chauvinist of the first order.

"What he ought to be saying is how nice it is to have women around the office."

"He's never seen the point of women in positions of seniority," she added.

Michael Buerk
Michael Buerk said it was time for society to address the problem

The 61-year-old said the former Nine O'Clock News presenter should look back at the BBC 30 years ago, when headlines were made when she and Angela Rippon started reading the news.

"If you've been subjugated for 2,000 years, it's your turn. It's about time things changed, but Michael Buerk hasn't kept up," she said.

Sarah Montague, a presenter of Radio 4's Today programme, called Buerk's views "very odd".

"Is he suggesting there's something wrong with having women in charge? Who would he prefer? Michael Buerk - another white, middle-aged male?"

Buerk had told the Radio Times: "Life is now being lived in accordance with women's rules."

While women have gained power, men seemed to have been robbed of it
Patricia, Wallasey, UK

While he admitted that a lot of the changes were for the better, he added that the "shift in the balance of power between the sexes" had gone too far.

Buerk said he felt men were being given a lesser role in society.

"All they are is sperm donors, and most women aren't going to want an unemployable sperm donor loafing around and making the house look untidy."

Buerk's opinions are to be aired in a new Five programme called Don't Get Me Started, which gives a platform for the airing of strongly-held views.

Buerk attacks women broadcasters
16 Aug 05 |  TV and Radio
Heggessey: A hard act to follow
14 Feb 05 |  TV and Radio
How Heggessey rose through BBC ranks
14 Feb 05 |  TV and Radio
Ex-BBC boss slates 'dumb' shows
08 Oct 04 |  TV and Radio
Boaden takes news hot seat
22 Jul 04 |  TV and Radio
BBC Two controller leaves for US
29 Mar 04 |  TV and Radio



Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific