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Countryfile visits The Archers

Thursday 24 February 2011, 17:25

Keri Davies Keri Davies Web Producer, The Archers

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Countryfile presenters with Charles Collingwood (Brian Aldridge) and Archers producer Julie Beckett


BBC One's Countryfile programme 'does' The Archers this Sunday (27 Feb).

Julia Bradbury and Ellie Harrison visit the Vale of Evesham in Worcestershire, an area that inspired - and still inspires - The Archers. They meet some 'real Archers' - people whose lives mirror aspects of the programme. Subjects include a family vegetable farm and a community running its own village shop.

Julia Bradbury meets Charles Collingwood (Brian Aldridge) and Ellie Harrison discovers agricultural sound effects with Archers producer Julie Beckett. And they take part in an Archers scene especially written for Countryfile.

Keri Davies is an Archers scriptwriter and web producer

  • Picture shows Ellie Harrison (presenter), Charles Collingwood (Brian Aldridge), Julia Bradbury (presenter) and Julie Beckett (Archers producer)
  • Watch Countryfile this Sunday 27 Feb, 19.00, BBC One
  • Full details of the programme, or watch it on iPlayer (for seven days after transmission)

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Comments

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    Comment number 1.

    BBC you spoil us Archers addicts - TWO doses - a feature on Countryfile and the Sunday night programme - at the SAME TIME!

    What a feat of programme planning!

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    Comment number 2.

    And how awful was that? A programme, supposedly about the countryside, being as cheesy as possible plugging another BBC programme with jolly, well scrubbed women popping up saying how they love the Archers. And we even got a bit more token hand wringing from Graham Harvey as we looked at the roof of the grand country house that supposedly provided the 'inspiration' for Nigel's fall. But quite frankly it could have been filmed anywhere.

    It strikes me that if TA simply concentrated on providing a well written, convincing programme rather than mixing sensationalist, headline grabbing, issue-driven pap whilst trying to get coverage on as many other BBC TV and radio programmes as possible we would be all the better for it

  • rate this
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    Comment number 3.

    Oh, be fair. It isn't as if Countryfile could have been placed at any time - that's where it is in the schedule. The same with The Archers. Both programmes have repeats (and The Archers also has the Omnibus), so it's perfectly possible to enjoy both of them.

  • rate this
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    Comment number 4.

    Well said, Squire. More time on the stories and writing and less on promotion is in order.

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    Comment number 5.

    After the recent 'performances' by the entire TA team, it ill becomes one of the more notable ones to start lecturing TA listeners of all people on what is and is not feasible.

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    Comment number 6.

    I enjoyed it, especially seeing some of the real farms, businesses, and countryside in the area that Ambridge represents. Well worth a watch (if you're not a conspiracy theorist who thinks this is part of some weird plot by the TA team to brainwash us).

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    Comment number 7.

    I don't think this is part of a weird plot to brainwash us, erms, but I don't think it was a totally fair representation of TA as it has become in the last few years ( I do not listen any more but I am not a "Nigelist": I fell out of love with TA before he fell off the roof.)

    Countryfile suggested TA was very focused on farming issues; it isn't. It is just another soap now & very issue-driven but they are not rural ones. The Helen SL is just one of the things which have killed TA for me but the lack of reality is the clincher, added to the uneven writing, inconsistent characterisation & obvious agenda from the Editor.

    It would be nice to see a young couple who don't immediately find cheap housing, the problems of poor older village folk without cars, rural drug-taking which isn't miraculously cured, poaching problems which don't just involve a few pheasants but big , nasty men with vicious dogs, the flooding of village homes because farmers don't clear ditches & dykes, the stealing of oil from tanks, organic shops which have gone bust, wind-farm anxieties, weather-related crop failures, the closure of cottage hospitals, the countryside of the north without rich incomers who keep pubs & shops going, the high rate of depression & suicide amongst farmers cont p 94.

    And Countryfile, despite the best efforts of John Craven, is just a romanticised view of the countryside. Adam worried about his TB but supported by his fees from the Beeb & the others who visit as tourists but never have to live here.

    And I could carp a bit about the lack of farming stories & rural issues but the most UNFORGIVEABLE thing is the poor writing & characterisation of late.

    Vanessa Whitburn has done some very good things & some average things but she is now, IMO, presiding over a steady decline into averageness.

    Time for a change.

  • rate this
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    Comment number 8.


    Mg 7

    Absolutely top para on agriculgtural issues missing from TA.

    The sense you get in TA at the moment is that this SW team have never, ever lived alongside, or talked or, better, seriously listened to anyone living / working / experiencing anythng else than a cosy commuter vill in 'a rural setting'.

    Pity no-one takes any notice of those of us who DO live in exactly the area you outline and have shouted until we are hoarse about this for months and months. As many of us have said, if the team DID take on board proper rural issues they would find a whole wardrobe of major material that would engage everyone - and you have just listed them!

    Many thanks.

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    Comment number 9.

    Top post Politebirder. You have expressed the views of many people on and off the board.

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    Comment number 10.

    Well worth watching - highly recommended.

    This returns some of the educational element the series seems to have been gradually watering-down in recent years.

    Please, SWs, can we now have a little more of that factual and educational material back in the programme, and a little less EastEnderization?

 

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