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Big Turn Out from DVLA for Children in Need - but BBC disappoint

Carla Taylor from the DVLA in Morriston will be well pleased with the final turn out for her fundraiser for the BBC Children in Need Appeal but the public service broadcaster did little to endear themselves to the participants when they pulled out from filming the event at the last minute (see 'Why the BBC failed' below).

Challenge Valley again proved a fun filled location and the cup of soup at the end was a welcome bonus.

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Why the BBC failed - an open letter to Greg Dyke. When you sit and watch the slickly presented Children in Need evening on 15 November spare a thought for a group of children and adults for whom Children in Need proved a big failure.

The BBC offered to do a 'two camera shoot' of participants from the DVLA taking part in Challenge Valley to raise money for Children in Need. As you can see from the above it was an opportunity to obtain some unique fun shots - good for the DVLA, good for the BBC and good for Clyne Farm Centre (if they mentioned our name!) and a fine sunny morning. 

Others in the past have found it good television. The list of tv programmes that have filmed our events - mainly on Challenge Valley - includes The Holiday Programme, Telethon, Activ8, Children in Need, MTV's Jackass. Most pay - or offer - a facility fee. All we had from Children in Need was, earlier this week, a request for copies of insurance policies and risk assessments because 'it's a bit more dangerous than a karaoke session'. Of course, we complied with this request but did say that we found it a little odd. 

An hour before the event was due to start the cameraman rang to say that they would not be coming because it was raining. When I pointed out that although it might be raining in Cardiff it was fine here, he said that the cameras that the BBC now used could only be used for two minutes in the rain (Look now Brett - you were coming to film the muddiest assault course in the world!!!)

So, thirty plus participants and at least the same number of spectators - from the second biggest employer in Swansea - feel really let down and that their fundraising efforts have been devalued. (Let's just hope that the spectator with the video camera gets good enough shots to sell to You've Been Framed!)

But its more than that - it goes beyond the feel good factor that raising money for a good cause brings. Children in Need is one of the many events organised by the Corporation to maintain its high profile. It is big business within the BBC and keeps lots of people in well paid jobs from Terry Wogan down to the office staff running the thing throughout the year. 

If the BBC cannot afford a rain hat for a camera its days are surely numbered.

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Westport Avenue, Mayals, Swansea SA3 5AR
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