Lesley Riddoch: Speech radio in Scotland ‘on its uppers’

SPEECH radio in Scotland is “on its uppers”, according to one of Scotland’s best-known radio broadcasters, Lesley Riddoch.

No longer describing herself as a ‘broadcaster’ – and strongly hinting she might be leaving Scotland to study a PhD between Strathclyde and Oslo universities – she was chatting to broadcasting lecturer and Scottish secretary of the Radio Academy, John Collins, about the future of speech radio in Scotland.

Also joining John – in a podcast found here – were Clyde 1’s Colin Kelly, Dabster Productions’ Ritchie Melvin, and Stephen Scott of the RNIB’s Insight Radio.

When asked by Collins if she believed speech radio in Scotland to be ‘on its uppers’, Riddoch said: “Yes. I have sat through too many conferences and meetings now that purport to be about broadcasting but are only about television… we are simply unsexy.”

Her possible departure from Scotland was summed up thus: “You just get to a stage, you’ve got to look at it: do you want to spend the rest of your life trying desperately to model yourself on whatever flavour of the month is acceptable to people who clearly have no particular interest in your work.

“And when you get to that stage, you go through being a bit hacked off with it, and then you just think: well, whatever. I didn’t come out of the womb with ‘B for Broadcaster’ on my forehead. And I’ve done various other things in my life, so it’s time to move on, do something else.”