There was a time you might have waited all year for a Naturist related item on the BBC but now they all seem to have turned up at once! It started in January with a short series on BBC3 called “The Naked Truth”. Four fifteen minute documentaries about completely different subjects but all filmed naked with little censorship. The series featured episodes on tattoos, loose skin, male body image and amputees. The BBC blurb said “The Naked Truth gives a voice to young people as they share their revelatory, personal and surprising perspectives on life and their bodies…while naked”.
British Naturism featured in March, there was an excellent article featuring BN's Volunteer Coordinator, Pam Fraser (pictured) which made it to the the front page of of the BBC News website no less! As you might expect, there was a spike in visitors to our little corner of the internet as a result. Pam told how she got thrown into the deep end of naturism but took to it like a duck - well - to water. It was also an opportunity to advertise a lot of BN events including the Blackpool weekend and the World Record attempt at Blackpool Pleasure Beach. We are still waiting for official confirmation of our record busting ride but the numbers add up but the BBC also put out a short video of the event under the title “Three things we loved today!”
In April, Sandra Ballard organised a naked dining evening at the Oxford Tap Social Bar to "celebrate the human body and challenge the British reluctance to strip off" . The event was filmed by the BBC and the short video made it onto their news and Facebook pages. A nice little video where several of the diners spoke on camera doing a good job to get our message of body confidence across to the BBC audience.
Remember the BBC Radio Sheffield Naked Podcast? “Two friends, one guest, no clothes. Celebrating and undressing the taboos about nudity”. Well, it worked so well, it's back for a second series. Jenny Eells and Kat Harbourne came up with the idea of an experiment to see if getting rid of clothes for an interview might make the whole thing more - revealing; in a conversational and confessional sort of way. It seems to have worked because people have asked for more and now they've got it!
BBC Three Counties Facebook page featured a short video of BN member Tom filmed during a life modelling session. Short as it was, Tom took full advantage of it to extol the virtues of our naturist lifestyle.
But possibly our greatest achievement was to make it into the very popular comedy current affairs show, Have I Got News For You. BN Magazine was featured in the ‘Missing Words’ round as the guest publication. We had to grant them a license to use it and we made various stipulations, but an estimated 8 million people will have seen it and the extended version, “Have I Got More News For You”. There were the obvious and expected jokes at our expense but nothing actually derogatory and overall, we came out very well.
Update 12 June...
And the coverage continues:
Desford Swim feature in a BBC news video
BBC Ideas - The freedom to be topless (whilst drinking tea)