World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

PM (BBC Radio 4)

Article Id: WHEBN0000393630
Reproduction Date:

Title: PM (BBC Radio 4)  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: BBC News, The World This Weekend, Today (BBC Radio 4), BBC, BBC Radio 4
Collection: 1970 Radio Programme Debuts, Bbc Radio 4 Programmes, British News Radio Programmes
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

PM (BBC Radio 4)

Genre Current affairs
Running time Weekdays: 60 minutes
Saturday: 30 minutes
Country UK
Language(s) English
Home station BBC Radio 4
Host(s) Eddie Mair
Carolyn Quinn
Editor(s) Joanna Carr
Recording studio BBC Television Centre (until Dec 2012)
Broadcasting House (Dec 2012 onwards)
Air dates since 6 April 1970
Opening theme PM Theme
Website PM

PM, sometimes referred to as the PM programme to avoid ambiguity, is BBC Radio 4's long-running early evening news and current affairs programme.


  • Broadcast times 1
  • History 2
  • Presenters 3
    • Current 3.1
    • Former 3.2
  • iPM 4
  • Quirky features 5
  • Production 6
  • Awards 7
  • See also 8
  • References 9
  • External links 10
    • Video clips 10.1
    • Audio clips 10.2

Broadcast times

PM is broadcast from 5pm to 6pm from Monday to Friday and from 5pm to 5:30pm on Saturdays. On weekdays it is followed by another news programme, the Six O'Clock News. The weekday editions are usually presented by Eddie Mair.


PM launched on 6 April 1970, with its first presenters, William Hardcastle and Derek Cooper, promising a programme that "sums up the day, and your evening starts here".[1] It made history for being the first radio news programme to feature its own theme tune.[2][3] Three have been used, with the last ending in 1997 in the aftermath of the death of Princess Diana.[2][3]

The First two PM theme tunes were by John Baker and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop.

Notable presenters after William Hardcastle included Steve Race, Brian Widlake, Robert Williams, Chris Lowe, Joan Bakewell, Susannah Simons and Valerie Singleton (a former Blue Peter presenter — in pre-interview chats, junior ministers "inevitably" claimed that they still had their Blue Peter badge[1]).

During the late 1970s and early 1980s, the programme's main presenter was Gordon Clough, who would typically prepare for the programme by completing the Times, Guardian and FT crosswords.



Years Presenter Current role
1998–present Eddie Mair Main presenter
2000–present Carolyn Quinn Deputy presenter
2014 Andrew Peach Relief presenter
2014 Chris Mason Relief presenter



On 12 October 2007, the programme started an additional blog for a spin-off programme called iPM,[6] broadcast on Saturdays at 5:30pm (immediately after the Saturday edition of PM) until 22 December and available as a podcast.[7] 'Through the blog, iPM listeners could discuss ideas with the production team and comment on the stories being lined up for the following show - so what ended up on air was shaped by the listeners.[8]

Quirky features

Though predominantly consisting of serious news, the programme is known for occasional satirical commentary, both from the presenters and in letters from listeners.

In 2008 the programme renamed its financial news slot "Upshares, Downshares" and used the title music of the television drama Upstairs, Downstairs, composed by Alexander Faris. In 2009, variations on the tune performed by PM listeners in a variety of styles from bossa nova to heavy metal[9] became a regular feature. This ended when the UK statistically left recession early in 2010. In October 2010, a compilation was released in aid of the Children in Need charity appeal, for which it raised over £70,000.[10]


PM is currently edited by Joanna Carr. The production team also works on Radio 4's The World at One, The World This Weekend and Broadcasting House.

A Radio Times poll in 2005 named Mair as the fifth most powerful person in radio.[11]


The programme won two accolades in the 2007 Sony Radio Academy Awards: Gold in the Interactive Programme Award, and Silver for Speech Programme.

See also

Analogous programmes include PM on ABC Radio National in Australia and All Things Considered on NPR in the United States.


  1. ^ a b BBC Radio 4, 2007. "PM History." Accessed 2007-09-10.
  2. ^ a b BBC Radio 4, 2007. "PM theme tune." Accessed 2007-09-10.
  3. ^ a b "Audio Identities: Radio news themes", Accessed 2010-09-03.
  4. ^ Singleton, Valerie (2008-06-28). "My holiday with Princess Anne and how I had a nose job to look like Audrey Hepburn by Valerie Singleton". Daily Mail. 
  5. ^ [1]
  6. ^ BBC Radio 4, 2007. "iPM Blog Introduction." Accessed 2008-08-01.
  7. ^ BBC Radio 4, 2007 "iPM Show Notes, 22nd December 2007." Accessed 2008-01-08.
  8. ^ BBC Radio 4, 2007 "What's iPM? 12 October 2007." Accessed 2008-01-08.
  9. ^ "Up Shares, Down Shares theme tune".  
  10. ^ "Upshares Downshares: More than £70,000 raised. And you can help raise more".  
  11. ^ BBC News, 2005. "RT Poll." Accessed 2007-09-10.

External links

Video clips

  • in the studioUpshares Downshares
  • (electronic guitar arrangement)Upshares Downshares
  • TV advert

Audio clips

  • (Dr Who Radiophonic Workshop arrangement)Upshares Downshares
  • PM theme tunes
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.