Current issue

December 2023

  • Reaching Out at Christmas
  • World AIDS Day


Home  >  News  >  'Very Positive' Response to BBC Reflections


'Very Positive' Response to BBC Reflections


More than a quarter of a million people have watched the reflective services broadcast by BBC Scotland on Sunday mornings during the Coronavirus Covid-19 lockdown.

Reflections at the Quay, broadcast from the BBC Scotland headquarters at Pacific Quay in Glasgow, includes readings and reflections from Church of Scotland and Roman Catholic clergy, and a musical interlude. There have been four programmes so far, and the BBC say they will continue for at least another eight weeks.

A BBC spokesperson said: “We were acutely aware that many of our Licence Fee payers were unable to attend services in person, so we took the decision early on to provide a weekly TV service from Pacific Quay in addition to our ongoing religious programmes on Radio Scotland and Radio Nan Gaidheal.

“We also broadcast a Mass on Easter Sunday, which was incredibly well received.

“We’ve committed to a 12 week run of Reflections At The Quay at the moment and the services will be taken by Clergy of different faiths over the period.

“The reaction to them has been very positive - more than 240,000 have watched parts of them so far and we’ve also had more than 11,000 iPlayer requests.

“We’re delighted that we’ve been able to fill the void felt by many when church services ended, and we hope our audiences will continue to enjoy our weekly programmes.”

The Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, the Rt Rev Colin Sinclair, took part in the programme for Easter Sunday, along with the Most Rev Leo Cushley, Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh.

Mr Sinclair said it had been 'a great privilege' to take part. The service was planned by email and social media, before the recording in Glasgow, he said: "We had to strictly observe social distancing. Moving around was like taking part in a careful choreographed ballet. There could be no clip on mikes and no make-up (and sadly no food!).

"However, we and the crew all felt we were working  to create something to give comfort and hope to people when they couldn’t get to their own church or struggled to know how to access online services.

"We were both pleased with the completed programme and the viewing figures. However, looking back, perhaps the most important aspect of the service was that in a city known for its sectarianism the Moderator of the General Assembly and a Roman Catholic Archbishop could work together in such a relaxed and friendly way. There may be social distancing but the barriers are also coming down."

He added that he hoped the programme would continue, audiences permitting. "The BBC is driven in part by figures, and so far the programme has stayed ahead of the curve. What will happen after church services resume is open to question. From information on online services, churches seems to be attracting more than their normal attendance. There needs to be careful consideration as to timing but I hope it may continue beyond the current situation. Congregations will also need to ask the same question about their online services once lockdown is removed and gatherings permitted."

This Sunday’s Reflections at the Quay is at 11.15am on BBC One Scotland, and all four programmes broadcast so far are available on the iPlayer service to people in the UK.

Moderator Joins 'People's Vaccine' Appeal

Moderator Joins 'People's Vaccine' Appeal

Read More   >

Churches Face £30m Coronavirus Loss

Churches Face £30m Coronavirus Loss

Read More   >

'It Shows a Way Forward'

'It Shows a Way Forward'

Read More   >


Anne Henderson - Wednesday, April 22nd, 2020

“It's obvious that the Scottish people have the desire to listen to God's Word in times of fear and especially unsettling times. At least the BBC is now trying to fill the void which they caused by only looking at numbers.”

Isabell Montgomerie - Wednesday, April 22nd, 2020

“The BBC Reflections programmes have been greatly appreciated by many people at this very challenging time. The audience figures confirm that there's a need to continue sharing our Christian faith with people to enjoy in their privacy of their homes.”

Add a reply

All fields are required. Email address will not be published.