Nadine Dorries 'doesn't know very much about broadcasting sector', says ex Channel ...
BBC

The news that the government is privatising Channel 4 continues to make headlines – and some of its biggest stars really aren’t happy about it.

The channel was founded by Margaret Thatcher's Tories and is publicly owned but commercially funded. It was set up in 1982 to deliver programmes for under-served audiences, and privatisation plans have worried many about the future of the channel’s output.

Culture secretary Nadine Dorries said last week: "Channel 4 rightly holds a cherished place in British life and I want that to remain the case. I have come to the conclusion that government ownership is holding Channel 4 back from competing against streaming giants like Netflix and Amazon.”

Some have suggested the Tory run government is 'punishing' the broadcaster as some on the right allege it has a left-wing bias.

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Whatever the motivations are behind the decision, it’s left some of the channel’s biggest stars and personalities very critical indeed.

These are the biggest names to hit out at Dorries and the government since the plans were announced.

Saoirse-Monica Jackson

The Derry Girls star has been critical of the announcementGetty Images

Jackson, known for playing Erin on the hit show Derry Girls, called the decision “terrible”.

"To be honest I think it's absolutely terrible," the actress told Radio 1 Newsbeat.

"I'd be really worried about undiscovered talent and the lack of that ever being brought to our forefront and being pushed.

"I think you need the opportunity to grow and writers need the opportunity to have comedies come out on Channel 4 and be nourished.”

Anna Richardson

Anna certainly isn't a fanChannel 4

Naked Attraction host Anna Richardson is one of the names to hit out directly at Dorries. As well as banning her from the show, she’s made it clear she’s well and truly against the announcement.

In an interview on Times Radio, Anna said Dorries had “shown her true colours” and banned her from the show as they’d be unable to find “any part of that woman that is in any way enlightening or attractive”.

She also said she was “devastated” by the decision to privatise the channel and said it was a “huge concern”.

“I just think that, even though Naked Attraction is about the beauty of the body, I think ultimately it comes down to personality, doesn’t it? And I think that Nadine has shown her true colours in all ways. And so for that reason, she’s out of Naked Attraction.

“I don’t think that we could reveal any part of that woman that is in any way enlightening or attractive, I’m afraid, so she’s off the panel.”

Kirstie Alsopp

She previously made headlines in the past for suggesting that young people can afford their own place just by cancelling their Netflix subscription, and now Location, Location, Location star Alsopp has been one of the most vocal figures in the backlash to the privatisation announcement.

Alsopp hit out at Dorries directly on twitter after the MP wrote that Thatcher, who set up the channel, wanted it to be “free from the constraints of the state” and described pushback as “lazy, overwrought and ill-informed rhetoric from the Leftie luvvie lynch mob”.

She also questioned whether it was “really ministerial” to describe detractors as a “lynch mob” while “at the same time complaining about having been accused of fascism”.

Sharing an article about the US Senate passing an anti-lynching Bill, she added: “This piece might make you think twice about using the term.”

The presenter also responded to the initial announcement by tweeting that “no true Conservative would sell Channel 4” and that “Lady T will be spinning in her grave”.

Matt Lucas

When the news was first announced last week, Great British Bake Off presenter Lucas tweeted a link to a petition that claims the move would "seriously undermine programming aimed at all the communities, across generations, that make up this country".

Lisa McGee

Derry Girls creator Lisa McGee also criticised the recent decision to privatise Channel 4, which first aired her show back in 2018.

“Thinking of all the voices that might never be heard. #channel4 #DerryGirls,” she wrote.

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