A Welsh BBC presenter who uses social media to back openly a contentious political cause, condemned people who voted Conservative, and described a Prime Minister as an “arsewipe” has apologised sarcastically for his behaviour after Welsh sporting disasters, and said ‘fuck’ to a celebrated past corporation DJ.
‘Funny man’ Mike Bubbins, who presents a programme on controversial BBC Radio Wales (RW), declared on Twitter at the weekend: “If I bumped in to any of you last night, I can only apologise. If you’re wondering whether a covid jab, no food all day, and drinking in the sunshine is a potent mix, I can confirm that it is. Now I’m hungover, Wales got battered (in football against Demark during the UEFA Euros) and Alun Wyn and Tipuric are out of the Lions tour (after injuries in the rugby game against Japan).
In a tweeted reply to ex-DJ Mike Flynn (apparently not understanding the irony in the original statement), he also said: “… I can do fucking urbane”.
But Mr Flynn is a prominent figure, described on Wikipedia as one of the main presenters at RW for its launch.
After seeing these comments, one former senior executive with the BBC told The Eye exclusively: “This is outrageous. It is simply oafish & unacceptable behaviour when Covid social distancing guidelines remain in place. To think they (BBC Cymru Wales [BBC CW]) employ him. What kind of image does this give of the BBC?.
Yet Mr Bubbins has been no stranger to contentious headlines in the past.
He presents a Saturday afternoon programme on RW, however senior officials at the corporation believe it is simply a Welsh version of a UK transmission, and staff say it is a way for the station’s head to stay in favour.
In reply to a message about the Grenfell Tower tragedy by former Prime Minister Theresa May, he said on Twitter: “The people they’re fighting, day in, day out, are your government, made up of you and your mates, who are still refusing to replace the exact cladding which caused the Grenfell tragedy on many other tower blocks, you shameless, disingenuous, arsewipe.”
In another tweet he made clear his support for Welsh independence: “Love Wales? Love these beautiful British Isles? Hate Westminster? There is another way…” hashtag YesCymru (Welsh independence movement) emojis heart and Welsh flag.
However Welsh independence is a highly alarming issue for some families. A poll earlier this year, for the ITV News Tonight programme and carried out with research company Savanta ComRes, suggested that, 61 per cent of people would vote ‘no’ in a referendum on independence for Wales.
Many of them could also be potential listeners, to increase the record-low audience figures at RW, and comments like Mr Bubbins’s may anger them.
For several years the numbers in favour of independence remained static on roughly 10 per cent, and the figures are likely to be squeezed further during a referendum campaign.
Other tweets by this ‘comedian’ on RW, have also been headline-grabbing, and according to some who have seen them, not funny at all. Mr Bubbins proclaimed: “I think its fair to say that the large numbers of working class people in the North of England and Wales who voted for the Tories in the last election, might not be so fucking stupid the next time around.” (emoji smiley face).
He has said about a former Welsh secretary: “And @AlunCairns is a total penis. But Americans couldn’t care less about the fact.” (emoji smiley face).
These tweets, though, might prove problematic for the majority of voters in Wales (who vote either for the Conservatives or Welsh Labour at elections), and are presumably, too, some of the listeners RW want to attract, to boost flagging audience figures.
And Mr Bubbins became the face and voice of an official Welsh Government education scheme that helps children as well as their parents, even after he was severely reprimanded by a social media company when he called an MP “a c***” (spelt in full).
Mr Bubbins said about Monmouth MP David TC Davies that he would appear to be “hypocritical, dishonest, racist, sexist, mysogynistic and homophobic… Maybe he’s confusing being right wing with being a c***” and ended the outburst on Twitter with another smiley face emoji.
He has also said about Mr Davies on Twitter: “Can anyone help me out? What’s the Welsh for ‘Christ, isn’t that attention seeking berk, with a face like a blind carpenter’s thumb, @DavidTCDavies just about as thick as a pig’s thickest shit?’ Diolch yn fawr. x”
Following a major complaint, Twitter warned: “Our investigation found this account violated the Twitter Rules” with a link to the account of Mr Bubbins.
Plainly Mr Davies has incurred the wrath of Mr Bubbins, because he is a regular target of his ‘humour’.
He said on Twitter in reply to Mr Davies: “Did this involve breaking the law by spending much more on it than is legally allowed? If not, you’re on thin ice. You chinless berk.” (smiley face emoji).
Mr Bubbins’ victim, Mr Davies, has been an MP continuously since May 2005, and currently holds the UK Government posts of Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Wales Office), as well as Assistant Whip.
Mr Bubbins has, too, condemned on Twitter the “rank hypocrisy” of Boris Johnson’s former aide, Dominic Cummings, who masterminded the Conservatives’ winning General Election of 2019.
He wrote sarcastically and shockingly on Twitter about Mr Cummings’ trip to Barnard Castle during lockdown, that he was “Appalled but unsurprised to read about Dominic Cummings’ rank hypocrisy. But appalled and surprised to learn that somebody willingly let Dominic Cummings erect penis inside them and leave it there until it ejaculated. Absolutely shocking behaviour.”.
Yet despite this kind of language, Mr Bubbins was part of the ‘Welsh Government’s Education Begins at Home’ campaign, which stated: “The Welsh Government want all children to have the right skills to face a changing world. A good education is an important part of that”.
The scheme tries to set a good example to parents with small children, and on Twitter announced: “Welsh Government’s Education Begins at Home provides information on how you can support your child at home & help their performance in school @dechraucartref”.
Officials published a link to their podcast which stated: “Comedian Mike Bubbins asks Ysgol Bro Morgannwg teacher Catrin Bennett what parents can do…”.
Another said: “Comedian Mike Bubbins shares his experiences of being a dad of children in a Welsh Medium school.”.
But on the website of this ‘comedian’, which was called “The Retrosexual Male”, Mr Bubbins wrote: “… I did some things I wouldn’t do now, things I’m not proud of. But you do when you’re young. And, anyway, that’s what the twin tub washing machine was for…Takin’ Care of Business.”.
Mr Bubbins says about his Facebook page: “This is the place to celebrate all things Bubbins, to massage my ego and to essentially never return to, once you have ‘become a fan’ in the broadest possible terms.”.
Mr Bubbins was also a teacher, and he has starred in BBC Cymru Wales’ (BBC CW) Tourist Trap, but his proposal for a school sitcom was rejected by officials there.
It is evident that Mr Bubbins is, too, a supporter of fellow BBC broadcaster, the rugby commentator (and former Welsh international) Jonathan Davies, who has also been at the centre of disturbing news.
On Twitter he has advised ex-players anxious to break into punditry, to: “Listen to Jonathan Davies doing it on @BBCSport”.
Being given the Saturday afternoon programme to present on RW, seems strange to critics in the light of Mr Bubbins’ recent behaviour.
It is, though, his online comments now that are prompting the most disquiet. One staff member told The Eye: “The perception is that he (RW Editor Colin Paterson) is just going through the motions after he failed to secure promotion”.
A former senior staff member with the corporation, said about the programme ‘Nothing Beats the 70s’ fronted by Mr Bubbins: “It’s a complete rip off of ‘Sounds of The 70s’ with Johnnie Walker on Radio Two and a desperate effort to mirror Owen Money’s core audience appeal (plus 60). Let’s hope Bubbins has more traction than at a Radio Wales celebration performance at The Grand Theatre, Swansea several years ago when he bombed on stage!”.
It may be a bomb that BBC officials hope to avoid, when one of their presenters who uses social media to back openly a contentious political cause, condemns people who voted Conservative, and describes a Prime Minister as an “arsewipe”, has apologised sarcastically for his behaviour after Welsh sporting disasters, and said ‘fuck’ to a past corporation DJ…
The memories of our Editor, Phil Parry’s, astonishing decades long award-winning career in journalism (which also provoked enormous abuse, and included 23 years at the BBC) as he was gripped by the rare neurological disabling condition Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia (HSP), have been released in the important book ‘A GOOD STORY’. Order the book now!