30 JANUARY 1942, Page 4

The change in the direction of the B.B.0 was so

generally expected a few months ago that since it did not happen then it had ceased to be expected now. The question naturally is, what lies behind it? The answer, I believe, is simple. When Mr. .F. W. Ogilvie was appointed to succeed Sir John Reith, in 1938 (largely on the recommendation of one of the Governors, Dr. H. A. L. Fisher, who knew Mr. Ogilvie's distinguished educational record) it was generally felt that a man admirably qualified to direct the B.B.C. in the conditions then prevailing had been found. But the conditions have changed radically. War-time expansion has swollen the B.B.C. staff to over to,000, and the administrative and financial problems to be faced are immense, demanding experience such as the outgoing Director does not possess and was never expected to need. Mr. Foot, the business-adviser brought in from the Gas, Light and Coke

Co. to supply that element, has supplied it admirably, and he is now raised to the position of Joint Director-General. It would not on the face of it have seemed impossible that Mr. Foot should administer the business side of the B.B.C. under Mr. Ogilvie, but on that point the judgement of the Governors (who were not, I understand, influenced in any way by Whitehall) must be accepted. One consequence of the change is that an ideal occupant of some high scholastic post is new available, If New College could consider taking a Balliol man for Warden —. But I fancy New College already has other ideas.