Award winning gardening broadcaster Ken Crowther has been sacked by BBC Essex managing editor Lou Birt.
Ken, who had presented gardening programmes on BBC Essex since the station opened 34 years ago, was told in a phone call that he was axed immediately.
It means that Ken, who’s been answering BBC Essex listeners’ gardening questions every Saturday since 1986, will be absent from the radio dial for the first time this weekend.
74 year old Ken Crowther said, “Lou Birt told me she was sacking me straight away because I’d made a flippant remark in a broadcast earlier this week. Ken had told a listener asking about a plant problem that “I’ll let you know in the spring how to prune it if I’m still here.” Lou Birt told me that if a member of the public picked up on it they could make a fuss and cause trouble.”
Ken said he is shocked and angry that he has been dismissed in such a callous way and feels he deserves better treatment after such long service.
He said, “In these stressful times when gardening has become such an important part of life relieving stress and strains affecting people’s mental health, it is a strange time to choose to axe gardening.”
Ken has twice won awards from The Garden Media Guild for his broadcasts, beating scores of other broadcasters and national radio and tv gardening broadcasters.