Author Archive for Ben Allen


What’s your sporting moment of 2009?

Think back over the past twelve months, what sporting moment grabbed you? It doesn’t matter what sport it is or how big the sporting event was, we just want to know about the “wow” factor. Tell us about the drama, excitement or surprise. Continue reading ‘What’s your sporting moment of 2009?’


Is there a role for vigilantes in society?

When it comes to low level crime is it sometimes better to have a respected member of the community deal with trouble makers? Do we rely too much on the long arm of the law these days?

On one public housing estate in Darlington in northern England, a former boxer, “Fearless” Francis Jones, charges around six dollars a week – to deal with trouble makers. Shop keepers call him when rowdy teenagers gather outside their stores intimidating customers or throwing things at passing cars.  They say he responds immediately while the police force can take hours.  Continue reading ‘Is there a role for vigilantes in society?’


Should this man be allowed on TV?

_45883633_007395510-1If you allow politicians with extreme views to share a platform with mainstream parties do you run the risk of legitimising them?

In the UK the BBC have invited the leader of far right British National Party to appear on its main political discussion programme.

Continue reading ‘Should this man be allowed on TV?’


Will crime put you off going to the World Cup in South Africa?

world cupWith little less than a year to go until the World Cup South Africa’s crime rate is coming under closer scrutiny.

Later today they will release its latest crime figures. President Jacob Zuma has just appointed a new hardline police commissioner to tackle problems facing the country.

President Zuma says he is confident that crime won’t put off fans who are thinking of going to next year’s tournament; but is he right?

Let us know.


How many people does it take to change a lightbulb?


 000162705Today, we’re after your favourite lightbulb jokes. It’s the beginning of the end of the traditional, energy guzzling lightbulb in the European Union. The new bulbs are not only energy efficient, they also last longer. So no changing of lightbulbs, no lightbulb jokes? Surely not! Let’s have your favourites!

We’ll start you off…
How many academics does it take to change a lightbulb ?
A: None. That’s what research students are for.


Virus Concerns in Mexico….

_45700217_mask_ap226b1We arrived in Mexico to talk about the growing violence in the country but we’ve found ourselves in the midst of a deadly flu outbreak. The news here is dominated by the story and being out on the streets it seems people are quite concerned, some are taking to wearing masks.

The authorities have closed down schools & public buildings in a bid to control things, in fact the venue we have booked for Monday will also be closed to the public. We’ve had to contact the BBC safety team to get advice. In fact one member of our team has pulled out over concerns.

I’m sure the audience will have plenty to say about the outbreak, the papers are saying the mood of the city has changed, calling Mexico city empty and sad. I’d be interested in hearing their thoughts on this. Last night our restaurant was very busy and it seemed like people were still out and about.


More From Mexico….

It’s been a very busy couple of days in Mexico City. There’s two vital things you have to get right on a WHYS show, firstly the audience and secondly the technicals. Without them you don’t have much of a show. In the past 48 hours myself and Alicia have been trying to sort out everything.

Yesterday we invited many of the guests we’re speaking to on Monday down to a bar, not only was it great to meet them but it’s important to get a feel for what they want to discuss. I think it’s fair to say most of them are angry at the country’s corruption, they feel America has a role to play in this surge in violence but mostly they’re disappointed the Mexican government has allowed the country get to this point.

Continue reading ‘More From Mexico….’


WHYS touches down in Mexico


Monday's venue

As Mark mentioned earlier WHYS will be coming live from Mexico on Monday. It’s the shows first broadcast from Latin America & myself and Alicia have arrived early to make some final preparations. In the build up to the trip the BBC safety team was keen to warn me of any potential dangers, they talk of high crime rates and express kidnappings but I have to confess I’ve seen very little to be worried about.
Continue reading ‘WHYS touches down in Mexico’

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June 2021