Moving up North? You’ll be needing a vicar then, BBC tells staff relocating to Salford

YOU’D think a cloth cap, clogs and a crash course in Mancunian would do trick, but no, some crazies at the religion-obsessed BBC think that a 30-grand-a-year-vicar will better help staff get over the horrors of moving to Salford.

'Christ on a camel! Did you say £29,500!'

According to this report the Beeb is to recruit its own vicar to counsel staff who are being moved north to its new site next year and help them through the upheaval of relocating from London.

Around 1,500 BBC employees have been asked to move to Salford next year. By the end of 2011 some of the BBC’s biggest shows, including Match of the Day and Blue Peter, will be produced there.

The 220-acre site at Salford Quays, known as MediaCity, is to be the new home of five BBC departments including sport, Radio Five Live and children’s television.

Around £200million is being spent on the move and employees are being given relocation packages of up to £11,000 each to offset the cost.

A BBC source said:

Many of the London staff were horrified by the prospect of moving up North and there will no doubt be people who need counselling about their change of surroundings. It is hoped that the new vicar will be able to provide some pastoral support to the new community of London staff who, it is expected, will take a while to acclimatise to life outside the capital.

Rumours that staff will also be issued with chocolate teapots to help them overcome the trauma have yet to be confirmed.

The Diocese of Manchester said it is looking for “an experienced vicar” to help “shape community, spirituality and mission” as well as providing

Solutions to meet the creative and production needs of media professionals.

The full-time clergyman will receive a salary of up to £29,500, paid for by the Church, and will be offered an initial three-year contract.

Phew. For a moment there I thought the cost would be passed onto the licence-payers.

David Marshall, spokesman for the Manchester diocese, said the new vicar would help foster positive relations between media workers, as well as working with other Christian churches and faith groups in the area.

A spokesman for the BBC said:

This is a Church of England initiative reflecting that many new people will be moving to Salford Quays.

So far around half of the 1,500 BBC staff asked to move have agreed to relocate. The site will also house another 800 staff who are currently based at BBC’s Manchester city centre offices. A further 700 new employees will be recruited.

Hat tip: Marcus

48 responses to “Moving up North? You’ll be needing a vicar then, BBC tells staff relocating to Salford”

  1. chrsbol says:

    What a great story.People from London are going to need more than a vicar.But every cloud has a siver lining.This is a good reason for moving north.

  2. Broadsword says:

    Like the guy in the picture, all I can say is “Feck!”

    Relocation expenses and a decent bit of time off work to sort out their homes is all the BBC staff need. I’d take offence if my boss suggested I consult a wizard just because he is superstitious. You wouldn’t get this sort of mollycoddling of workers in the private sector. Just do your bloody jobs or you can leave.
    I’m looking forward to seeing Broga’s rant later on. I know he loves the Beeb……

  3. Tom Rees says:

    Barry, you’re just bitter because they turned down your application for the job. I’m with you on this on, though. I think you’d make a great vicar!

  4. Chris Hughes says:

    Moving to Salford? What they need isn’t a vicar… it’s a missionary.

  5. barriejohn says:

    Blue Peter moving to Salford?

    “Now, this is what you’ll be needing to make tripe, children”!

    (And if you were about to say “There’s enough tripe on t’telly already”, I’m ahead of you!!)

  6. barriejohn says:

    PS I did my teacher training at Padgate College, Warrington, in the early 60s, and, although I had a whale of a time, it really was like taking a step back in time. Pie shops I could understand (and the very mention of those delicious pies makes my mouth water even now!), but TRIPE SHOPS?

  7. AngieRS says:

    Get clogs on, lass, there’s trouble t’bbc. Sounds about as ridiculous as moving the contents of the Tower of London armoury to Leeds was. Salford, centre of the universe, not. They’re going to need one of these believe anything the bible tells me fundies to believe what he’s telling the Beeb staff about Salford.

  8. Broadsword says:

    Who’s going to sort out the Blue Peter garden?

  9. Barry Duke says:

    Tom, in a few month’s time I am going to be relocating to Spain – you’re among the first to hear this news. I have asked the board of the Freethinker to provide me with “spiritual help” with the move in the form of Dawkins, Dennett, Harris, and a few other atheist worthies whose help will be invaluable in setting up a new base for the magazine on the Costa Blanca. The cost, I estimated, would be a mere €100, 000. Curiously, I was told to bugger off. As to your belief that I might make a a good vicar … pffff.

  10. barriejohn says:

    Re Tripe at the BBC, Bill Tidy beat me to it!!

    Anyone else remember The Fosdyke Saga? Almost as good as The Flutters!

  11. barriejohn says:

    PS The Fosdyke Saga was actually set in Salford, and only came to an end because snooty Robert Maxwell didn’t approve of it!

  12. chrsbol says:

    True bj tripe is truly disgusting. Now jellied eels on t’other hand!

  13. Marcus says:

    Watch it, you lot!

    I live in Manchester and it’s not all that bad. We’re even getting electricity next year. Apparently.

  14. Kev says:

    EE by gum! What a strange view folk down south have of the north. If the BBC staff are so out of touch with reality they should perhaps stay down there and let some people who know what REAL work is take on a few of the easy jobs they have. Also it’s a long time since we wore bear skins and hit each other with clubs…actually there are still some of those about but they tend to hit each other IN clubs rather than with them.


    My father in law was a fully paid up cockney and he was bought up on tripe and loved it till his dying day, so it’s not only in the north that it was eaten. I always put it on a par with that Sarfend delicacy Jellied Eels. Ugh!!

  15. Angela_K says:

    Isn’t Salford now rug-butter central? If so the BBC probably want a vicar to prevent their staff from going over to a different dark side. I agree with Barry about the chocolate teapot, haven’t these Beeb types ever heard of professional counsellors?

  16. chrsbol says:

    You’ve struck a nerve there bj. Don’t mess wiv us up t’north. And as for your backhanded compliment re.pie shops. Well we don’t take to Warrington people either otherwise known as plastic scousers.

  17. Marcus says:

    @ chrsbol: Just checked out your link – Joey Holts! Wonderful stuff!!!!!

  18. chrsbol says:

    Joey Holts is the meaning of life. Even if your starfish looks like the Japanese flag next day!

  19. barriejohn says:

    Oh yes, Kev. My grandmother in Southampton used to boil up tripe on a regular basis for my great uncle, who slurped it up like a real delicacy, so I know it’s not just a Northern delicacy. But we didn’t have tripe shops!

  20. barriejohn says:

    Who could deny that this looks really appetizing?

  21. Stuart H says:

    Why would BBC Manchester need another in-house godbotherer anyway. As I recall, the Evangelical Alliance stooge who sits on BBC religious ‘advisory’ bodies was the producer of last year’s BBC Crucifixion film and works out of Manchester, where he also publicises some claphappy megachurch or other.

  22. chrsbol says:

    Bj That would look more appetising if they got rid of that green stuff.We don’t eat that up here!

  23. Kev says:


    Point taken about tripe shops. However have you ever known anybody to eat…..

    Cow Heel
    Calf Brain
    Cows Udder

    I could go on but it’s nearly lunch time, maybe not yet.

    Love the picture, my dog bought up something like that in the garden yesterday.

  24. Broadsword says:


    My grandfather thought boiled cows udder a delicacy. Funny how Dad never ate it again when he flew the nest.

  25. Wurble says:

    The weirdest thing I’ve ever eaten was ‘The body of christ’, given to me by some geezer in a frock. Turned out to be a shitty little piece of rice paper. What a fuckin liar, I thought (and I still do)

  26. Marcus says:

    Speaking of tripe, it’s hard to believe just how much of the stuff is served up in churches, synagogues, mosques, and so on every single day of the week.

  27. sailor1031 says:

    don’t know about “sarfend” – my recollection is that jellied eels was a popular delicacy in the east end of London – apparently Tubby Isaacs still has a stall on Goulston street. Never saw jellied eels when I lived in Manchester but tripe and black pudding (now there’s something to make the strongest toss their cookies…) were all the rage. Thirty years later on assignment in Nottingum this time, that damn black pudding was back againon the cafeteria menu, just as nasty and just as popular

  28. PaulEd says:

    A quick back of the envelope calculation;
    750 staff to relocate. Of the 10% of the general population that are church types, a large proportion of this number are rural and retired folk, presumably the relocated staff are not of this type. So maybe only 5% of the staff are church types, that’s 38 people. Half of them will be catholics or evangelicals etc and won’t want anything to do with the CoE, that leaves may be 19 people who might find the move north so horrific that they have to see a CoE priest.
    Over 3 years that works out as £4650 per person. Assuming the vicar works 275 days a year (Sundays are working days), that’s 14 days per person per year. These 19 relocated church type staff will have to devote half of their annual holiday entitlement to see the priest that much. Just how horrific does the BBC/CoE think the move north is going to be?

  29. sailor1031 says:

    at risk of turning this thread into a grossout fest has anybody tried that great german delicacy Schlachtplatter? more disgusting even than blackpudding

  30. sailor1031 says:

    PaulEd: there you go, you you you ……atheist you! using rationality again to persecute religion

  31. barriejohn says:

    What on earth could you have against Black Pudding – one of my favourite foods? Mind you, you won’t be at all surprised when I inform you that it’s strictly forbidden amongst the Plymouth Brethren, on account of its being made from blood (I’m not kidding!).

    This is just SO mouthwatering!

  32. Broga says:

    I like Salford. Great place. For a start Match of the Day is crap. And the BBC need to stop ferrying people like Alan Hansan back and forward to bloody London in a taxi. He is a pain in the arse anyway – almost as bad as Gary Lineker – both of whom are rampaging egos out of control. The BBC have money to burn: Thought for the Day indulgences (Oh god, “Little Billy Bullshitter” – as he is known to his clergy – Bishop Tom Butler, this morning and I heard 30 seconds before I could switch channels); the vastly overpaid RC Director General who is going to be sympathetic to any licence fees – extracted under pain of imprisonment – to religious types.

    If CamClegg are serious about cutting cost they must start here with Ratzinger’s £20 million freebie a photo finish. £30,000 salary for vicar from the licence fee? God give me strength.

  33. Broadsword says:


    If you resent paying the licence fee you might enjoy (or seethe at) this website:
    The bit about censorship, the masons and wages is good. Not sure about the rest.

  34. tony e says:

    I’ve always felt that those at Al-Beeb were out of touch with the rest of the uk, this pathetic hand holding is just proves it.

  35. Janstince says:

    You know, listening to all you guys (and I understand about half of what those dishes are), well, I thought I might share some of our Southern and Mexican delicacies:

    Menudo – essentially tripe, but more stew-like, and made from pig intestine (am I right thinking tripe is cow intestine)? My father loves it, I don’t touch the stuff.

    Lengua – cow tongue. Tried it twice, once out of curiosity, once out of stupidity.

    Pigs Feet – not kidding. Not as hard as you might think, it’s really a bit chewy.

    Pigs Testicle – no thanks.

    Honestly, much of this stuff was made when there wasn’t enough food to go around. Slaves ate the feet, testicles, entrails, etc. of whatever animals the masters let them have because there wasn’t enough to go around and they needed the protein. Of course, it comes with large amounts of fat, cholesterol, etc. as well, I think often times because of the methods of cooking to make it palatable.

    Also, had chicken foot soup in China. Tasted delicious, but there was something a little off-putting about sucking the skin off the feet, and finding a beak and partial skull in your soup. When in Rome…

  36. sailor1031 says:

    Barrie: I’m sorry but the idea of a sausage stuffed with congealed blood is more than enough to make me hurl. This may be the only time I ever agree with the Plymouth Brethren. And to see those folds of tripe lying on the plate – ye gods!! However I grant you neither is quite as disgusting as ‘chitlins’……

    As for the Beeb……I remember Parkinson’s Law states that an organization will move into it’s new palatial marble corporate home shortly before it enters its death spiral and disappears – well them’s my thoughts for the day!!

  37. barriejohn says:

    Janstince: sheep, goats, pigs and deer as well, acording to Wikipedia!

  38. Graham Martin-Royle says:

    I know it may be thought a bit rough up north, but counselling!

    As for the food thread, having spent a lot of time in Africa I found porcupine to be the worst, really rancid taste. Monkeys were okay.

  39. Barry Duke says:

    As the comments on this post have meandered into the realm of gross-out food, let me share with you a couple of photos of some Thai fare sent to me by Suhail Ahmad. They are pictures of BREAD baked in special ‘forms’ and decorated with special techniques … but it remains bread.
    The question is: “Would you buy it for your family? Would you eat it?”
    The bakery is in the Thai province Ratchaburi, 100 km east of Bangkok. They pretend to honor the Buddhist principle that you shouldn’t believe what you see.

  40. Janstince says:

    Bj – Deer meat, or venison as we say, is actually pretty good, though a bit stringy. As for goats, haven’t had the meat but the cheese is delicious. For sheep, you guys have mutton, too, I understand. Unless of course you were talking about the testes and intestines and other bits, in which case I understand.

    One actually good/weird food I’ve had is snake. Not sure what kind it was, but it tasted like chicken with a texture not quite like brisket. A friend of mine from China told me they have a saying, “The best meat in heaven is dragon, the best meat on earth is donkey.” Not sure if I could handle that on a regular basis (sounds like horse meat to me), but I’ll try most things once.

  41. sailor1031 says:

    Okay Barry – you win the gross out competition

  42. barriejohn says:

    Sorry, Barry, I think that I was the one who took the thread off in the direction of disgusting foods! To get back to the Beeb, did others notice that Charles Moore (ex-Telegraph) is refusing to pay his licence fee, at considerable cost to himself no doubt?

  43. NeoWolfe says:

    If I relocate, I don’t need a vicar, I need someone to show me where the hookers hang out. Then to show me where they serve COLD beer, and where to buy condoms and a really loud alarm clock.


  44. Callisto says:

    Sorry, I just have to invade again and say I have eaten kangaroo, though I passed on emu…passed out, more like it…

  45. Adrian says:

    Will the people of Salford be getting counselling by this vicar to help them recover from having a bunch of southern pansies transplanted into their tribe?
    Anyway, we are now quite civilised up here, we have flushing outside loos now instead of earth closets and we are promised that we will have running water soon. Some of us have even stopped wearing,”gasp”, flat caps (except the women, of course).

  46. pete says:

    I am one of the BBC workers coming to Salford.
    1. we’re not pansies
    2. this vicar nonsense is tripe – never heard anything about it. and we’re not getting counselling…why anyone would think we would need it is beyond me
    3. surprisingly we’re not all planning to live in salford…in the same way you probably don’t live right next door to your work
    4. if we thought the north was crap why would we be coming to live there

  47. […] ² This statement naturally excludes Lancashire.  But it’s practically it’s own country anyway.  Well, the BBC think so… […]

  48. Gill O'brien says:

    Hi ALL you who are coming to live “Up NORTH” .I am selling my 3-bed detached house , 10 minutes from Salford Quay’s.In the catchment area for an Excellent Ofsted Junior school called “The Deans Primary”
    My house is in a cul-de-sac of 10 houses and it is being sold on Rightmove for £219,950. The address is Morley Avenue, Swinton.1 Mile from Worsley Village .
    Hope to hear from you.?
    We are all lovely , friendly people .