BBC admits lying to us for over 60 years about Security Service link

BBC executive Alan Dawnay, right, who instigated the ‘formalities’

A remarkable BBC article, published yesterday, has removed the lid from over sixty years of intentional deception of the British public by the nation’s broadcaster.

For decades from 1933, the BBC worked hand in glove with the Security Service to ‘vet’ job applicants to keep out ‘subversives’ – that is, anyone with even a vague association with left-wing groups – a process known to those involved as ‘the formalities’:

bbc subv.png

Any found to have ‘subversive’ links who was already in the BBC was blocked from promotion into positions of influence by means of markers and comments on their files – which the BBC has also admitted removing before files were sent to, for example, industrial tribunals.

In other words, the BBC admits withholding evidence.

The ‘Christmas tree’ mark and ‘standing reminder’ used to bar ‘suspect’ staff from promotion

According to the article, the practice continued until the 1990s – but it also admits:

The BBC will not say whether any staff are vetted these days. “We do not comment on security issues,” a spokesperson said. But any residual vetting, of people needing access to classified information for emergency planning for example, would be open and known to the person. There is no more secrecy as once there was.

So it could well still be happening – and the claim that anyone being vetted now would know about it these days is only as believable as it should be from an organisation that just admitted sixty years and possibly more of deliberate deception.

The fact that the Security Services vetted personnel to ensure only Establishment-friendly figures reached positions of influence will surprise few. But the fact that the Corporation now admits actively and knowingly lying to us all is a remarkable admission.

One deserving of a lot more exposure than a minor article on the BBC News website.

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  1. They have moved on from “no one with left wing views” to “must be a Tory supporter to occupy a position of influence in management or editorial staff”.

  2. This revelation completely undermines the BBC’s claim that it is impartial.

    1. It also completely undermines the claim by all the right wing media that the BBC is a left wing organisation. There is a very good book about the BBC through history that documents their attitude to the left very well. Although one can understand vetting throughout and shortly after the war there can be no justification for seeing the left as any less patriotic than the right. These days it’s exactly the opposite. I think we are far more patriotic – but it is about what is in the best interests of the country – not a small elite in the country. For the many not the few.

  3. Most be the worst kept secret in the political world. In general, national broadcasters are on the side of Capitalism irrespective of who is in government.

  4. But a monster like Jimmy Savile, who was presumably also vetted by MI5, was deemed fit to hold top entertainment positions with access to children.

  5. Thank you for digging out this very useful material. It confirms my established view that the BBC is an arm of the security services, at least as far as its news channels and political documentaries are concerned.

  6. Been known for ages and information has been revealed before, including known by those who worked for them as I did for six years, was a ‘known’ lefty living with a Trot at the time, – a leading light of LSE, etc etc, and still I got a job there and was trained up as a Press Officer after a year as a PA….they made mistakes with their checking, and also liked employing pretty young things as I was then to be treated in the most appalling sexist #MeToo way as temptation for TV critics!

  7. Can only assume that in the strange, inverted world of MI5, lefties are more of a menace to society than serial child rapists given free rein for 40 years and their criminal BBC Executive protectors.

  8. If anyone ever thought it wasn’t the case that the BBC, the military and the police aren’t branches of the rightwing establishment they must be extremely naive.

  9. When I worked there decades ago it was usually felt that there were also a number of very low level security “assets” there too. Certainly the management consisted in large part of ex public school types who had to be hand held (and as we used to say, excuse me, but “have their bums wiped”) by the actual workers. One guy put in change of my dept was an ex nuclear submarine commander – knew nothing about our area at all.

  10. They put a Christmas tree on suspect files because the the tune of the German folksong “O Tannenbaum’ is the same as that of ‘The Red Flag’… a public school boy little joke.

  11. Someone at the BBC must have known about Savile,as they say the higher you go the worse it gets.
    Richard Dennis

  12. Lord Reith, Director General of the BBC had some ‘interesting’ opinions:

    Attitude to fascism:

    In 1975, excerpts from Reith’s diary were published which showed he had, during the 1930s, harboured pro-fascist views.[28]

    On 9 March 1933, he wrote: “I am pretty certain … that the Nazis will clean things up and put Germany on the way to being a real power in Europe again. They are being ruthless and most determined.” [28]

    After the July 1934 Night of the Long Knives, in which the Nazis ruthlessly exterminated their internal dissidents, Reith wrote:

    “I really admire the way Hitler has cleaned up what looked like an incipient revolt. I really admire the drastic actions taken, which were obviously badly needed.”

    [28] After Czechoslovakia was invaded by the Nazis in 1939 he wrote:

    “Hitler continues his magnificent efficiency.”[28][29]
    Reith also expressed admiration for Benito Mussolini.[28][30]

    Reith’s daughter, Marista Leishman, wrote that her father in the 1930s did everything possible to keep Winston Churchill and other anti-appeasement Conservatives off the airwaves


    I first learned of this in Nick Robinson’s book ‘Live from Downing Street’.

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