In what media experts are calling a flagrant and shocking disregard for its own charter, satellite TV channel UK Gold has been fined an undisclosed three-figure sum by Ofcom and warned it could lose its broadcasting licence, after pleading guilty to screening a programme that wasn’t an episode of Only Fools and Horses.
Speaking after the ruling station controller Michael Pearce said: ‘We would like to apologise to both our viewers, Alan and Gladys Palethorpe from Dunstable, and ask they don’t give up on us as a result of this unfortunate incident. These were the actions of a disgruntled employee who had sneaked into the editing suite and queued an episode of last of the Summer Wine late one night after everyone else had left the building. Or it might have been any time of day, to be honest, as no-one actually works here any more.’
A clearly shaken Mr Palethorpe told The Daily Mail: ‘We was settling down sitting with our mugs of Horlicks waiting for Del Boy to start before going to bed when all of a sudden a different show came on. We was gutted because it was supposed to have been the episode where Del Boy falls through the bar. Have you ever seen it? It’s bloody hilarious! We’ve only seen it 112 times so we don’t like to miss it when we get a chance. I don’t like to make a fuss, because those three old blokes in Yorkshire careering downhill in a bathtub looked quite funny, but surely it should have its own channel.’
Meanwhile a chastened UK Gold has given Ofcom categorical assurances that it will comply fully with its charter and will only broadcast 100% Only Fools and Horses content in future, alongside its normal five-minute advert breaks every ten minutes for payday loan firms and no-win-no-fee legal shysters, who described their arrangement with the channel as ‘a nice little earner, Rodney – oh hang on, was that one from Minder?’