Holt man’s online campaign to save BBC Three gains 50,000 supporters

Jono Read. Photo: Steve Adams Jono Read. Photo: Steve Adams

Thursday, March 6, 2014
1:38 PM

An online petition to save the BBC Three television channel is being led by a 25-year-old Norfolk man.

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Jono Read, a digital marketer from Holt where he is also a town councillor, has launched the campaign, which attracted 50,000 and celebrity supporters including comedian David Walliams within hours.

The petition can be signed at www.change.org/savebbc3.

Mr Read took the initiative after reading the comments from the BBC director general about plans to axe the channel.

He said the channel was orientated to 16-34 year-olds and had given a platform to new comedians and new creative writers - and he was concerned that young people were not being given a voice in the debate.

Mr Read said: “For the last 16 years BBC Three has been the channel that dared to do something a bit different.

“Award winning programmes like Torchwood, Little Britain, and Our War were all produced for BBC Three. The live debates and cutting-edge documentaries make viewers think, unlike the key competitors like ITV2 and E4.

“None of the other main BBC channels are prepared to do this and dedicate only a small amount of time for these audiences.”

He added that plans to move some of the content online would be hampered by poor broadband provision in rural Norfolk which was not fast enough for iPlayer.

“I started the petition as a viewer but also as someone who wanted to give the thousands of young people a voice. They have not been consulted on the changes, and the proposal has come out of the blue. It seems to have been a decision between BBC3 and BBC4 and once again the young adults have been the ones who pay the price for cuts,” he added.

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