What Andrew Heard

1 - 27 May 2007

by Jack Grone

What Andrew Heard is a work about fictional people who witness and comment upon events that actually happened. Many of the news accounts referred to by the characters appeared in U.K. newspapers during 2003 and 2004. In addition, certain speeches bear strong resemblances to public comments by senior BBC executives. A list of sources follows.


29 May 2003
Arabella’s summary of Gilligan’s original report highlights the two main areas focused on by Lord Huttons inquiry. See http://www.the-hutton-inquiry.org.uk/rulings/statement/

3 June
Simon’s statements about Gilligan’s column refer to the Mail on Sunday, 1 June 2003, p. 26.

Simon’s mention of the fatal decision to mix patriotism with journalism echoes Greg Dyke’s speech to the University of London Goldsmiths College Journalism Symposium, 24 April 2003.

27 June
The phrases quoted by Simon and Gilly come from correspondence between Richard Sambrook and Alastair Campbell in June and July 2003, all submitted as evidence to Hutton.

Simon’s comment regarding Campbell, he seems to think the BBC takes its orders from Downing Street, echoes John Humphry’s quote: We take our orders from our bosses and not Alastair Campbell. MediaGuardian.co.uk, as reported in Blair Told: Its Time to Answer Vital Questions, Michael White and Matt Wells, Guardian, 8 July 2003.

Arabella’s reference to testosterone echoes Timothy Garton Ash, Dont Bury This Treasure, Guardian, 1 April 2004. Other commentators may have used similar analogies to describe the nature of the dispute between the BBC and Number 10, although I am unaware of specific examples.

Simon’s line that impartiality is in the DNA of the BBC, as well as his frequent references to independence and impartiality echo Dyke’s Goldsmiths College speech.

8 July
Arabella refers to the Central Pronunciation Unit. Georgina Born refers to the CPU on p. 110 of her account of the BBC under directors general John Birt and Greg Dyke. Uncertain Vision by Georgina Born, published by Secker & Warburg.

Newspaper headlines as reported in Media Stories From Todays Papers, 8 July 2003, http://www.media.guardian.co.uk

Arabella refers to the BBCs press statement of 7 July 2003, BBC Says FAC Report Justifies BBC Journalism.

10 July
Gilly’s description of Dr. David Kelly is from Scientist Named as BBC Contact, Richard Norton-Taylor and Matt Wells, Guardian, 10 July 2003.

15 July
Gilly’s assertion that the important thing is how the BBC responds echoes Dyke’s Goldsmiths College speech.

Simon’s statistics on the BBC are from the BBC Annual Report and Accounts 2003/2004.

17 July
Gilly quotes the BBC press release of 17 July 2003, BBC Statement Following Andrew Gilligans Appearance Before the Foreign Affairs Select Committee.



1 September
Simon’s and Gilly’s references to the heat wave echo an Associated Press story, Heat Wave Killed 11,000 in France, Guardian, 29 August 2003.

18 September
Gilly’s remark about the newspapers calling for Gilligan’s head are supported by editorials which appeared on 18 September, as summarised in Gilligan Will Pay a Heavy Price, Guardian, 19 September 2003.

28 January 2004
The phrases quoted by Simon and Gilly come from the Hutton Report. See http://www.the-hutton-inquiry.org.uk/rulings/statement/

Simon’s reference to the Atkins diet is supported by Greg Dyke’s account of his final days at the BBC. Inside Story by Greg Dyke, published by Harper Perennial.

29 January
Gilly’s remark that Dyke is the one who restored our independence echoes Georgina Born in Uncertain Vision.

2 February
Simon quotes Gilligan’s resignation statement as reported by the BBC, Gilligan Statement in Full, 30 January 2004.

The advertisement Simon reads is from the Daily Telegraph, 31 January 2004.

Greg Dyke’s statement as quoted in Dyke Forced Out By BBC Governors, BBC News, 1 February 2004.

Quote by John Humphrys as reported in Humphry’s Slams Campbells Speech, BBC News, 9 February 2004.

6 February
Greg Dyke’s six-figure book deal mentioned in BBC Independence Not Threatened, BBC News, 7 February 2004.

1 April
The quote about corrections is from Timothy Garton Ash, Dont Bury This Treasure, Guardian, 1 April 2004.