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More or less – Nigel’s free fall

BBC Radio 4

As some of you might already know, I am a BBC Radio 4 listener. I do enjoy the programmes broadcasted and I have even made the odd entry in this blog about Dessert Islands Discs and what not. I even download some podcasts when I am not able to catch some interesting things, including at some point even The Archers. To the point that even one time a friend of mine asked me to keep some of the episodes of the Archers while he and his family were on holiday… but that is a different story.

Last weekend, while looking for new podcasts to download I came across a true jewel: the More or Less with Tim Harford. The idea of the programme is top explain – and sometimes debunk – the numbers and statistics used in political debate, the news and everyday life. Hurray!

I really enjoyed it and I wish I had listened to it before. In the lastest episode they talked about bank takes, street grooming and the Archers… Yes, you read correctly, they talked about the fateful fall of Nigel Pargetter from Lower Loxley Hall. For those of you that are not familiar with the events Nigel was trying to take down a New Year’s banner when he fell off the roof. As a good radio programme, there are of course plenty of sound effects and Nigel’s scream while falling lasted some 3.5 seconds.

Armed with this information, More or Less calculated the hight of the building. The answer: 60 meters! Quite a tall building for a rural area. You can see their calculations here. Of course people were quick at responding to this revelation, should you have a view, please feel free to contact them about this and if you are looking for something interesting to listen to, download the More or Less podcast!