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Biddy Baxter

Biddy Baxter, former Blue Peter editor, is interviewed by Kirsty Young.

Kirsty Young's castaway this week is the TV producer and former Blue Peter editor Biddy Baxter.

In charge of Blue Peter for 23 highly successful years, she was responsible for the coveted Blue Peter badges, the multi-million pound charity fundraising appeals and a nationwide lust for something called sticky-backed plastic. Her masterstroke was getting the young audience involved; although the programme's weekly postbag of around seven thousand letters must have given her a few headaches.

In spite of some early careers advice that, "no one from Durham has ever got into the BBC", her determination to make a career in broadcasting won out and across the decades her steely reputation kept the show at the top of the ratings and steered it through quite a few mishaps and the odd spot of 'scandal'.

She says simply, "It was an exercise in trying to make children feel as if they belonged.".

Available now

45 minutes

Last on

Fri 6 Jun 2014 09:00

Music Played

  • Benjamin Britten

    Deo Gracias from the Ceremony of Carols

    Performer: Choir of St John’s College, Cambridge. Performer: George Guest.
    • Ceremony of Carols.
    • Decca.
  • Johann Sebastian Bach

    The final chorus from the St Matthew Passion

    Performer: Choir of King’s College, Cambridge. Performer: Concentus Musicus Wien. Performer: Nikolaus Harnoncourt.
    • St Matthew Passion - Harnoncourt.
    • Teldec.
  • Édith Piaf


    • The Very Best of Edith Piaf.
    • Capitol.
  • Georges Bizet

    Beat Out Dat Rhythm on a Drum (from Carmen Jones)

    Performer: Members of the Cast.
    • The Magic of the Musicals.
    • Music Collection International.
  • Victor Hely Hutchinson

    Andante quasi lento e cantabile from Carol Symphony

    Performer: Pro Arte Orchestra. Performer: Barry Rose.
    • Carol Symphony.
    • EMI.
  • Castaway's Favourite

    • Franz Schubert

      The Allegro from Schubert's String Quintet in C Major

      Performer: Amadeus Quartet.
      • Schubert: String Quintet in C.
      • Deutsche Grammophon.
  • Joaquín Rodrigo

    The Allegro from the Concerto de Aranjuez

    Performer: Miloš Karadaglić. Performer: London Philharmonic Orchestra. Performer: Yannick Nézet‐Séguin.
    • Milos Aranjuez.
    • Deutsche Grammophon.
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    The Papageno Duet

    Performer: Regula Mühlemann. Performer: Michael Nagy. Performer: Sir Simon Rattle. Performer: Berlin Philharmonic.
    • The Magic Flute.
    • BPH.
  • Book Choice

    • The Traveller's Tree - Patrick Leigh Fermor

  • Luxury Choice

    • Toast and dripping


Role Contributor
Presenter Kirsty Young
Interviewed Guest Biddy Baxter
Producer Cathy Drysdale


  • Sun 1 Jun 2014 11:15
  • Fri 6 Jun 2014 09:00

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