John Yorke to become Acting Editor of The Archers

The ArchersJohn Yorke is to become Acting Editor of BBC Radio Four‘s rural soap The Archers.

Yorke, who is BBC Vision’s Controller of Drama Production and New Talent, will become temporary editor on The Archers while Vanessa Whitburn takes long service leave until July. Yorke will become acting editor for the farming based soap at the end of this month.

“It’s a fantastic opportunity for me to see a different way of making long running shows and learn from the longest running drama in the world. I’m really looking forward to the experience. I began my career in radio many years ago and learnt almost everything I know about drama there. It’s a real thrill – and a great honour – to return to a medium I love, particularly on a show as cherished as The Archers.” – John Yorke

Yorke’s current role with the BBC
means he overseas soaps EastEnders and Doctors as well as soapy dramas Holby City and Casualty – taking on the Acting Editor on The Archers means he will temporary be involved with all of the BBC’s soap output.

The Archers remains one of BBC Radio Four’s most popular programmes with millions of listeners every week. The rural soap airs two editions six days a week with an omnibus edition on Sundays. So far over 16,000 instalments of the soap have been broadcast across its fifty year plus history.

Last year Camilla, Duchess of Cambridge, made a cameo appearance in the soap joining the likes of Judi Dench, Alan Titchmarsh, Robert Winston and Colin Dexter who have also recorded roles. Camilla was not the first member of the Royal Family to take part in The Archers; Princess Margaret and the Duke of Westminster did so in 1984.

The Archers airs at 2pm and 7pm on Radio Four.