I WAS going to send the letter below to Donalda MacKinnnon, but found from the BBC website that I would have to send it to a PO Box in Darlington. I see no point in doing that, so I am sending it to you.

There was a paragraph in Lesley Riddoch’s article in The National (‘Change at top of BBC Scotland is an opportunity to do do much better’, August 17) which chimed with what I had been thinking all week. That paragraph was a quote from a BBC staff member: “The daily schedules are pretty poor, tired, using the same old ideas, formats, and people, over and over again. Where are the bold ideas? The programmes that capture modern Scotland and the rest of the world?”

As an example of this lack of vision and imagination I cite the BBC television coverage of the World Pipe Band Championships. Every year is the same as the year before and the year before that. The same presenter, Jackie Bird, says the same things as all the previous years. The same format is used to present the competition. Despite the World Championships taking place over two days, with hundreds of bands and thousands of bandsmen and bandswomen taking part, the BBC boils it all down to one hour which concentrates almost exclusively on the Grade 1 competition. (I know the whole of the Grade 1 competition is online but that is not the point of this letter.) The wealth of diversity, individual stories and activities which are present on Glasgow Green over the two day period is ignored. Bands come from all over the world and from all over Scotland, England and Ireland. We seldom see any of them with their stories of what they do throughout the year to get to the World Championships, or indeed to show just how good they are. There is little attention paid to the very large, active Juvenile and Novice sections. This is the World Pipe Band Championships, not the Grade 1 Pipe Band Championships. Moreover, no attention is paid to the other activities going on during the World Championships which are all part of the total event held on Glasgow Green.

The BBC is running on train tracks on this programme. The presentation is to a formula, lazy, dull and boring. There is no thought, vision or imagination in the preparation of this programme. There is a wealth of potential interest available but it is not being utilised. If I can think of ways of making this BBC programme more interesting, I would hope that BBC professionals should be able to do much better in this instance and in other areas of presentation.

Sandra Durning, Glasgow

FASCINATING stuff from Ian Small on the wonder that is BBC Scotland (Letters, August 18). I almost forgot the lies and bile spewed forth year after year in which Kaye Adams, Louise White, Hayley Miller, “Voice of the Union” Jackie Bird and many others have smeared those who believe in this nation, calling them separatists and nationalists, internet trolls and fascists.

I almost forgot the hateful disgrace that was Good Morning Scotland on September 17-18 2014. I almost forgot while he was bleating on about the blessings bestowed upon us that the BBC flat-out refuses to allow Scotland dedicated news programming at an hour that suits the public, leaving Scotland as the only “region” in Europe without a dedicated TV news programme.

The BBC is nothing but a mouthpiece for Westminster Tories to spread anti-democracy and pro-Union propaganda. It is and has always been a tool of suppression and the sooner it is replaced with a true Scottish broadcaster the better. Then and only then shall I pay my TV licence. Doing so now would be akin to paying your jailer’s wages.

Rory Bulloch, Address supplied

IAN Small’s reply to Lesley Riddoch’s article on the problems with BBC Scotland neatly sums up what is wrong the organisation (Letters, August 18). His huffy, churlish response typifies the insular, back-slapping attitude that permeates practically all of BBC Scotland output.

He appears to be saying “as we are very busy we are doing a wonderful job”. Well in my opinion self praise is no praise at all, and being busy does not equate with good, just busy! Instead of listening to criticism they plough along with what they, in their BBC elitism, believe is right regardless of feedback.

The list of shows he holds up as exemplars of BBC Scotland output is neither diverse nor top-drawer entertainment and I appreciate budgets come in to the mix, but Legacy of the Line – where two presenters interviewed their parents in their living rooms and some archive footage is shown – was parochial in the extreme (no disrespect to the presenters), particularly when you compare with the BBC nationally where the presenters are on the ground in their relevant sides of pre partition India.

Ian’s attitude also sums up why there will be no hour-long Scottish BBC Six News and why they are planning to schedule the programme at nine o’clock despite public preference for six or 10 o’clock. Their conceit knows no bounds and if they continue working in their BBC Scotland bubble telling themselves what a wonderful job they are doing, then it might come a time when they find they have no job at all as their audience who have indulged them long enough will have found alternatives elsewhere.

Christine Smith, Troon

I WAS somewhat surprised by the space given to Ian Small, head of public policy and corporate affairs at the BBC.

Mr Small’s response to National columnist Lesley Riddoch’s criticism of BBC “Scotland” was essentially public relations department blurb and his anticipatory excitement regarding a new BBC Scotland channel certainly did not resonate with me.

I imagine the new channel’s output will consist of the usual suspects churning out the usual Anglo-British dramas and nuanced news reporting: An’ forward tho’ I canna see, I guess an’ fear!

In fact, if the TV licence fee was abolished on sets converted to block BBC I would, as an ex-BBC viewer, be first in the queue for the conversion thus saving myself the exorbitant sum currently thieved annually from my pocket by the English exchequer.

Regarding Mr Small’s boastful reference to BBC Scotland’s “vast” programme output, I pictured a busy butcher who occasionally produced some decent mince but 90 per cent of whose business was selling tripe and who often bragged of the huge amount of tripe he shifted daily.

All very well, but at the end of the day , no matter the quantity produced, tripe is still just tripe.

Malcolm Cordell, Broughty Ferry, Dundee

IAN Small’s denial that the timing of the 9pm news was determined by “London edict” left me wondering just how much London controls BBC Scotland. For instance, on July 7 this year a majority of the members of the United Nations voted in favour of a treaty to ban nuclear weapons.

The BBC broadcast not a word of this either south or north of the Border. This is a historic piece of news for the benefit of Scotland, which houses on the Clyde the biggest nuclear bomb arsenal in Europe.

Both the Sunday Herald and the National have carried articles and correspondence since.

Next month the treaty starts on its journey to becoming international law. Does BBC Scotland have the courage to broadcast the progress of the UN Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty as successive nations ratify their governments’ support?

Richard Phelps, Glasgow

FRIDAY’S reply by the BBC to Lesley’s article says at lot. Anyone who dares criticise the BBC is wrong wrong wrong. The BBC, especially in Scotland, is wonderful, the BBC says. Know your place!

It’s not surprising more and more people in Scotland are refusing to pay the BBC tax.

Dan Huil via thenational.scot