Desert Island Discs

BBC Radio 4

Society & Culture, Personal Journals

Chart Positions

Personal Journals 31

Desert Island Discs was created by Roy Plomley in 1942, and the format is simple: a guest is invited by Kirsty Young to choose the eight records they would take with them to a desert island


Biddy Baxter

June 1st, 2014

Episode 422 of 566 episodes

Kirsty Young's castaway this week is the TV producer and former Blue Peter editor Biddy Baxter. In charge of Blue Peter for 23 highly successful years, she was responsible for the coveted Blue Peter badges, the multi-million pound charity fundraising appeals and a nationwide lust for something called sticky-backed plastic. Her masterstroke was getting the young audience involved; although the programme's weekly postbag of around seven thousand letters must have given her a few headaches. In spite of some early careers advice that, "no one from Durham has ever got into the BBC", her determination to make a career in broadcasting won out and across the decades her steely reputation kept the show at the top of the ratings and steered it through quite a few mishaps and the odd spot of 'scandal'. She says simply, "It was an exercise in trying to make children feel as if they belonged.".