Fans who missed Clare Balding from their television screens in the brief two day interlude between the end of the Commonwealth Games and the start of her new series ‘Big Beasts’, were celebrating last night at the news that the BBC is to launch a channel featuring the tomboy next door talents of the ubiquitous TV presenter.
Announcing the launch of the channel to be known as BBC Balding, replacing BBC Three, Director General Tony Hall said, “The new channel’s output will give the licence paying public what they deserve.”
The schedules for the channel have to be finalised but it is envisaged that programmes will start at 7am with ‘Breakfast with Balding” and continue via “Brunch with Balding” through to “Bedtime with Balding”. The channel will show repeats overnight, which will allow Balding to continue with her burgeoning radio career.
Given her near constant presence on the nation’s TV, there can’t be any doubting Balding’s popularity, although her core fan base is believed to be pet loving spinsters of a certain age and male BBC executives charmed by her boyish good looks and jolly hockey sticks enthusiasm.
Clare Balding answered the press’s questions with her customary good humour and laughed heartily at the suggestion that being on screen constantly would be rather daunting. “After all,” she said slapping her thigh, “it’s very little different from what I am doing now.”