As part of the momentum that it is building up ahead of a referendum on independence for Scotland, the Scottish National Party (SNP) has stepped up calls for the country to secure greater broadcasting powers.
The nationalist party who enjoys an absolute majority in the Scottish parliament has seized on remarks made by former BBC Trustee for Scotland Jeremy Peat in an interview with the Scotsman newspaper who said the country was poorly served by the corporation and that
viewers north of the Border should be offered an alternative to what was described as “England-only stories”.
The party strongly believes that current broadcasting arrangements are not meeting the needs of the people of Scotland and tha the UK government must take notice of what the SNP insists is a growing demand for Scotland to be accountable for broadcasting.
In the interview, Peat also said, “[The] case for more production out of London remains and the pressure for increased devolution of programming must continue”.
Commenting on the remarks by the former BBC executive, Stewart Maxwell, SNP MSP for West Scotland and convener of the Scottish Parliament’s Education and Culture Committee, added: “There is a clear need – and growing support – for broadcasting powers to be devolved. It is of vital cultural importance to Scotland. The UK Government must listen to these voices – especially when the BBC’s former Scottish Trustee says our country is being poorly served and that he backs devolution of powers.
“Those on all sides of the political divide in Scotland acknowledge we need our own distinctive broadcasting platform.