On the 6th of September, BBC Radio 4 is set to launch an intriguing new podcast titled “When it Hits the Fan,” delving into the individuals and organisations that find themselves in the headlines for less than flattering reasons.
While the front pages often dominate national discourse, have you ever wondered what unfolds when a person or an entire organisation becomes embroiled in a media storm? What truly transpires behind closed doors in boardrooms and private messaging groups as they navigate the turbulent waters of public opinion and press scrutiny?
“When It Hits The Fan” boasts two exceptionally influential and seasoned hosts. David Yelland, the former editor of The Sun, who has subsequently spent two decades at the helm of the communications industry, advising prominent companies and individuals during crisis situations. Joining him is Simon Lewis, the former Communications Chief for the late Queen and Gordon Brown, in addition to his roles with major corporations such as NatWest, Vodafone, and Centrica. Together, they bring a wealth of experience in both observing and managing crises, sharing their extensive knowledge about what drives major stories into or out of the limelight.
In each episode, our hosts venture behind the scenes of the latest news stories, uncovering how, where, and when it all began to unravel. They will dissect the diverse strategies employed by PR professionals tasked with safeguarding their clients’ reputations and shed light on the inner workings of the media machine. What counsel is exchanged in confidential consultations?
David Yelland says: “My career is a game of two halves: the first half causing crises at The Sun and New York Post and the second half advising the companies and individuals actually in the middle of those crises. The time has come to lift a lid on what actually happens when ‘it’ hits the fan. I can’t think of a better person to be doing this with than Simon.”
Simon Lewis says: “During my career in communications, I have been in the room during some extraordinary moments in corporate and public life. Every crisis is different but what David and I are aiming to do in this series is to look under the bonnet of fast moving situations to analyse and interpret what is actually going on when it hits the fan. I am really looking forward to working with David who brings marvellous insights from his unique career.”
Rhian Roberts, BBC Commissioning Editor for Radio 4 Podcasts, Formats and Digital, says: “David and Simon are our best guides to the exact moment the proverbial hits the fan and what’ll be going on behind the scenes to fix it. This is the podcast for anyone who’s ever wondered about the origins of a monumental PR cock up.”
When it Hits the Fan will air weekly every Wednesday at 9pm on BBC Radio 4 and be available on demand on BBC Sounds.