22 MAY 1964, Page 15


Freedom of the Air

Sir David Llewellyn, Dingle Foot, MP. QC.

Crime and Puni■Mment M. J. G. Cox The Press Kenneth Young Catholics and Birth Control 'Sac:erdos Non Pontifex' By the Handicapped Paul Hunt 'Outrage' at SI. Paul's P. F. Carter-Ruck and J. E. Payne Mr. Wynne and the Press,

Olga Franklin. George Beddue FREEDOM OF THE AIR

S1R,—Having served on the BBC's Broadcasting Council for Wales, I question Quoodle's idea to abolish the BBC. There is, in fact, little wrong with BBC radio which a strong dose of competition would not cure. New ideas, new services, new blood would ' flow from the mere existence of a rival. What would be fatal would be-to:allow the BBC' to run a local radio 'station in any area until competition from a rival source exists in it. Even now it is not too late for this Parliament to authorise, under a five-year licence. experiments in England: Scotland and Wales. Why not allow the good ship Caroline to operate from port, for a start?

If the Labour Party fights against commercial radio as it fought commercial TV, so much the worse for it. Let the Tories give the workers by hand and brain in the radio industry the inestimate boon of an alternative employer. Let the Tories give the customer freedom of choice.' Millions of Labour listeners will be as thankful for it as they arc for the alternative programmes of ITV which their own .leaders did not want them to hear. There is.nothing like a good issue to rally the rising spirits of Govern- ment supporters.

Let us fight for the Freedom of the Air, and so force Mr. Wilson, for once, into the open as the friend of monopoly, the enemy of consumer choice and the denier to a wide range of workers of an alternative boss. The voters would then have fair and fresh warning of what Labour. modernisation would really mean.

DAVID LLEWELLYN 7'he Old Rectory. Yatiendon, near Newbury