BBC Apologises for Alan Titchmarsh Swearing Scandal
In the first and probably last time that anyone has had to apologise for housewives’ favourite Alan Titchmarsh’s language, the BBC has said sorry for the gardener’s use of the word ‘bastard’ on BBC Breakfast.
Discussing the issue of ‘bastard trenching’ – a completely legitimate gardening term, Titchmarsh said the following while appearing on the show:
“I don’t double dig every day – digging to two spades’ depth. There’s another name for it, and it sounds terrible, but it’s called bastard trenching,” he said. “By the end of it you realise that’s a very fitting name for it.”
Host Louise Minchin later said: “Thank you very much. And I just have to offer our apologies for the language used in the last couple of minutes. Apologies if people were offended.”
“Oh no, no,” Titchmarsh replied. “It’s a term in a gardening book. I shan’t repeat it but it’s not offensive at all.”
Titchmarsh’s full explanation was as follows:
“This is one of the most fundamental and hated of all gardening jobs, although chiropractors make a fortune from it! So, why should we do it? Digging helps to control annual weeds (when not in seed). Turning them in to the soil (burying them) cuts out the need to compost them and allows perennial weeds to be extracted from the soil. Plus, digging can be incredibly satisfying and gives you time to think!
“Digging ‘fluffs up’ the soil compacted (squashed down) by heavy wellies and rainfall. Fluffy soil contains air that plant roots need, drains more quickly, and is easier for roots to grow through the soil.
“Tradition had it that the ‘only’ way to dig a new bed ‘properly’ was to double-dig it. This is incredibly hard work that you don’t need to do if you just want to grow ornamentals. Another name for it is ‘bastard trenching’, I’ll let you figure out why…”
So really, the incident is just another example of the BBC covering itself in the event of its oh-so-sensitive viewers being offended.
Live TV, eh?