Warning over BBC radio cuts

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CUTS to BBC local radio may jeopardise emergency broadcasts during the event of a civil crisis, it has been claimed.

The Local Government Association, which represents more than 350 local authorities in Wales and England, said proposals to share more programming and stop some medium wave services would threaten advice messages during emergencies like flooding - adding the BBC was underestimating the “risks to people’s safety” as communities relied on it in a crisis.

Its culture board chairman Chris White said: “Time and time again these arrangements have proven invaluable to local communities, from updates about school closures, heavy snowfall, road accidents and flooding, to bulletins about more unforeseen emergencies such as train crashes or dangerous criminals on the loose.

“People rely on councils for the latest information in many circumstances, and in turn we rely on local radio.”

The BBC said local radio would continue to have a key role in an emergency.

Under proposals from BBC Radio York a long-running weekly rock and roll show by “Dr Rock” Charles White, based in Scarborough, could go.