- Calls for Moyles’ sacking from BBC Radio 1
VETERAN DISC jockey, Paul Gambaccini broke the rule of omerta among the fraternity last night in Oxford and called on BBC Radio chief Tim Davie, who was present in his audience, to dispose of the services of fellow DJ Chris Moyles. “I find his continual presence on Radio One unacceptable. Chris Moyles should be gone,” declared Professor Gambaccini in the last of his quartet of lectures as the News International Professor of Broadcast Media at Oxford University, writes John Mair.
The ‘professor of pop’, himself an Oxford graduate, did not mince his words about the current king of Breakfast on his old station. “His recent comments about Auschwitz involved real people and their ancestors.
That is no joking matter for them. To encourage this or sit by whilst it happens is unprofessional.” Worse, Moyles was an habitual offender. “He has done it so many times. He has no sense of responsibility”.
Moyles caused controversy last month when he told listeners about his adventures filming the BBC1 genealogy show Who Do You Think You Are?. “Unlike a lot of the Who Do You Think You Are? shows I didn’t go to Auschwitz,” he said. “Pretty much everyone goes there whether or not they’re Jewish. They just seem to pass through there on their way to Florida.” The BBC said it regretted Moyles’s comments, which “were misjudged and we are speaking to Chris”.
Gambaccini, who is openly gay, also condemned Moyles for his seeming homophobia towards the likes of singer Will Young. This merely re-inforced negative stereotypes.
‘Gambo’s’ ire was not just directed at Moyles and his crew but at his professional defenders as well “I am nauseated by the Radio One press office constantly rationalizing his behaviour” he lamented and issued a warning for the future: “If we do not get our own house in order, then sooner or later somebody else will and they might break the furniture in the process!”. Tim Davie, BBC Head of Audio and Music – in charge of Radios One to Five, Six, Seven and more – had to deliver the vote of thanks just after ‘Gambo’ had delivered this jeremiah
Davie was fulsome in his praise for the Professorial lectures and their range but more circumspect about Moyles. He did say though that “picking on people because of their sexuality was not appropriate to broadcasting” and he had made his views on taste perfectly clear to Moyles in a a face to face interview.
In October last year Gambaccini strongly criticised Russell Brand and Lesley Douglas, the former Radio 2 controller who hired him, over the “Sachsgate” affair.
- Special thanks to John Mair and the Guardian newspaper