Strictly Come Dancing, Top Gear & The Apprentice facing BBC axe?

by Lisa McGarry
Strictly Come Dancing logo

Strictly Come Dancing logo

BBC bosses are apparently on the hunt for some new shows and will be killing off some of their most popular formats in the best five years, it’s been reported in a brand new book.

Executives are said to be worried that programmes such as Strictly Come Dancing, Top Gear and The One Show are getting old and tired and reaching the end of their natural lives and are considering pulling them off air in the near future.

Former director of communications Ed Williams has penned a new book about the publicly funded television channel and claims that behind the scenes there is a desperation and chaos pervading everything, as staff scramble to find the next big TV hit.

Strictly Come Dancing axed? 5 shows that could / should follow! X Factor, TOWIE, Geordie Shore

Is The BBC In Crisis? till hit shelves this Saturday and in it Williams claims that The Apprentice and Dragons’ Den are also in the firing line and that all five flagship series’ could find themselves off the air in the next half decade.

apprentice 2013

He is quoted by The Sun as writing: “I think there’s a series of very popular formats which over the next five to ten years will reach the end of their natural lives.”

Ed says that the team are currently on the lookout for a format that can pull in big audiences and replace some of it’s best programmes, but as yet the search has come up cold.

The problem is apparently compounded by the fact that the Beeb is restricted in wage packages it can offer in comparison with other channels and the former exec thinks, as a result, bosses find it hard to attract the ‘best creative people’. These shining stars often approach other channels, in search of the big money.


However Beeb boss Danny Cohen reportedly told staff that there are lucrative bonuses on offer for anyone that finds a big hit.

He is quoted as telling producers etc that if they find a promising format, that works well on the channel, the opportunity is there to “benefit from that beyond your basic wage.”

The Voice has been a massive hit for the BBC this year, attracting it’s highest ratings so far, however because it’s owned and licensed by an independent producer it costs millions every year for the channel to run.

They want something home grown and Beeb created which can match the success of Strictly Come Dancing, which launched in 2004, Top Gear – which has been on air for 13 years – and The One Show which has been running since 2006.

We have to admit that while we wouldn’t miss the latter and we agree, Dragons’ Den and The Apprentice are definitely getting tired, Strictly Come Dancing still has plenty of promise and appeal and could run and run and run, provided the team can keep landing big name and interesting stars for the lineup.

BBC axed The Young Apprentice last year and it’s been rumoured for a while that the main show, which has been suffering from falling ratings, could follow very soon.

Would you miss the Beeb’s biggest shows? Leave your comments below….

Lisa McGarry

Lisa has been watching reality TV for too long now. She won't do any housework unless 'Big Brother' announces it over the tannoy and everything she does has to be put to a public vote!


  1. Jaye on February 26, 2014 at 6:27 pm

    Why would you look to replace Strictly when it’s already doing what they want? Mental!

  2. Chris Pollard on February 27, 2014 at 7:56 am

    What this actually shows is that it is the BBC itself, in its current incarnation, at least, which is approaching its sell-by date. It is stale, unimaginative and chaotic, and driven by an obsession with political correctness. They should give up TV completely, and stick to radio, which is the only thing they can do properly.

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