HTA meets BBC to discuss new gardening TV

The HTA has met with a representative team from BBC Garden Programmes, under the chairmanship of Nick Patten, to discuss future gardening programming.

The HTA showed the BBC its latest HTA market research information on the changing gardening customer, showing how younger gardening customers are spending in garden centres "and are becoming as important as the more traditional, older groups". 

The HTA told the BBC that both groups were interested in grow your own, good environmental practice and avoiding waste, and spending more time at home in the garden as family habits are influenced by the recession.

The HTA said: "BBC representatives recognised that their flagship Gardeners’ World programme was aimed at an older profile customer and that there may therefore be opportunities for new types of programmes which would reverse the decline in viewing figures for gardening on TV.

"The discussions identified a number of potential new programme ideas. Though these have to remain confidential for commercial reasons for the time being, they included programmes embracing key changing attitudes and new target groups. They also included the possibility of factual programmes based on actual industry examples, or on aspects of historical gardening, or even travelogue styles of programming. 

"BBC also asked for the industry’s help in identifying potential personalities who had both horticultural knowledge and some relevant charisma and who could therefore make good presenters."

HTA director general David Gwyther said: "There is a real media challenge at the moment, with increased interest in gardening on the one hand but a decline in viewing and readership figures in the media on the other hand.

"We very much look forward to helping BBC bridge this gap by providing both entertaining and informative material as well as, perhaps, the people to get it over to the gardening public.  It was good to agree the need for an ongoing dialogue as well, based on BBC’s considerable interest in HTA’s comprehensive programme of market information and consumer analysis".


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