I won’t be in the audience. But it wasn’t for the want of trying. I filled in their web site form. One question asked “Have you ever been on Question Time before?” By “on” I assumed they meant had I actually been on the telly – that is, asking a question on the show, on the actual gogglebox. Well, I haven’t. But I sat in the audience for the 2004 edition from the Newbury Corn Exchange.
I was phoned by someone from Front Row this morning, asking me for details with a view to being in the audience. But it turned out that “on Question Time” means “in the audience for Question Time”. So it appears that being in the audience for Question Time is a once-in-a-lifetime unique experience. It’s a bit like seeing a double rainbow or, as I did last week, having a fox sit tamely near you.
Oh well. Ho hum. I will just have to console myself with the fact that I saw Janet Street-Porter on Question Time when I saw it in Newbury. Now there’s a woman, the cut of whose jib I like. A very intelligent lady. But she was balanced on the panel by Julian Fellowes, who writes Downton Abbey. On the basis that I can’t find anything good to say about him (except that he was absolutely excellent as “Kilwillie” in “Monarch of the Glen”) I won’t saying anything about him at all.
Update 17th October: This edition of Question Time was staged at St Bartholomew’s school in Newbury. There was a tragic accident at the Ufton Nervet railway crossing last night. This delayed three of the Question Time guests (Sir Menzies Campbell, Jeremy Hunt and Angela Eagle) for more than an hour. One report said the delay was at least 103 minutes long. Passengers were eventually taken off the train at Newbury Racecourse station. There was a report that the three delayed panelists didn’t get to the set until 9.30pm, leaving very tight to record a programme for broadcast at 10.45pm. The panel was completed by Isabel Oakeshott and Rev Giles Fraser.