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BBC is failing to take religion seriously, says Anglican bishop

The BBC has been criticised for failing to prioritise religious coverage (PA)

The Anglican Bishop of Leeds has criticised the BBC for failing to prioritise religion.

Following the announcement by the BBC that the specialist role of Commissioning Editor for Religion is to be closed, along with three other top commissioning jobs, Bishop Nick Baines said: “At a time when it is impossible to understand the modern world – its politics, economics, military and humanitarian events – without understanding religion, why isn’t religion being prioritised by the BBC as needing expert commissioning.”

Roger Bolton, the BBC presenter and a Sandford St Martin Trustee which aims to promote excellence in religious programming, said: “It’s the old problem: not taking religion seriously. For instance, why is there no BBC News Religion Editor to complement the Science, Economics, Business, Political, Financial, Arts and Sports Editors?”

On January 23 the BBC announced that the specialist role of Commissioning Editor for Religion would be scrapped with religious programmes being commissioned by one new Commissioning Head of Specialist Factual who also will have responsibility for commissioning BBC TV’s science, business and history programmes.