Sara Cox defended by BBC over fairground rides joke

The BBC has defended Sara Cox over comments she made about fairground rides on her Radio 2 show. (PA)

The BBC has defended Sara Cox over comments she made about “rickety” fairground rides on her Radio 2 show.

The TV and radio presenter held a phone-in asking the listeners of the Sara Cox Show “What’s The Most Random, Rickety Ride You’ve Ridden On?”

Cox, 47, read out an answer from one caller who claimed they went on a rollercoaster at a local amusement park and “didn’t think we’d make it to the end alive”.

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The radio DJ quipped: “That’s the thing with smaller local fairs, isn’t it? Their rollercoaster rides are held together with rusty screws, Blu Tack and crossed fingers.”

A hen party on a fairground ride at the Isle of Wight Festival, in Seaclose Park, Newport, Isle of Wight.

Sara Cox joked that fairground rides are held together with ‘rusty screws and Blu Tack’. (PA)

But her comments prompted complaints from some listeners on social media – including Future 4 Fairgrounds, an organization of female showmen campaigning to raise continued support for local fairs in the UK.

Colleen Roper from Future 4 Fairgrounds tweeted: “@sarajcox The impact of throwaway comments like this are damaging to the public perception of our industry and community should not be underestimated. I honestly don’t understand how you think this is acceptable?”

And Narvenka Shaw Noyce from the organization said: “@sarajcox these comments are unacceptable. A full apology is needed. Maybe you would like a zoom meeting with us 6 ladies? To find facts out about traveling fairgrounds and how our business works.”

All fairground rides in the UK are now subject to an annual inspection by independent body the Amusement Device Inspection Procedures Scheme (ADIPS).

Sara Cox (PA)

The BBC said Sara Cox’s comment was ‘off the cuff’ and she did not mean to offend. (PA)

The Back in Time for … presenter has not responded to the complaints.

Bu the BBC said in a statement: “Sara made an off the cuff comment in response to a listener text about rollercoaster rides and was referring to her own childhood memories of fairground rides and not present day standards.

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“She did not mean to offend any of her listeners and the comment was in no way intended to be derogatory to local fairs.”

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