Minister gets trapped in BBC lift, misses interview slot

The incident took place in the broadcaster’s central London HQ

The UK’s leveling-up secretary has missed an interview slot at the BBC after being stuck in an elevator in the corporation’s central London HQ. Appearing later on Radio 4, he joked it could be something from a comedy show.

On Monday morning, cabinet minister Michael Gove found himself trapped in a lift for some 30 minutes as he attempted to make his way to an interview at the BBC’s Broadcasting House.

A BBC producer tweeted an image of Gove stuck in the transparent elevator. 

Breaking W1A – Michael Gove finally free from the lift behind my desk, where he has been stuck for half an hour pic.twitter.com/Y9g7X3SA4i

— Jack Lamport (@JackLamport) January 10, 2022

Speaking around 8am, the presenter of BBC Radio 4’s Today program, Nick Robinson, said that the minister had been stuck in the lift for some time but was “keeping cheerful.”

Robinson added that Gove had offered to conduct the interview by phone from the lift.

“I wish I could say this is a joke, it is not a joke, and it is not very funny for Mr Gove and the security man,” Robinson added.

Gove eventually appeared on the show around 15 minutes late and joked that he had been “leveled up,” a reference to his ministerial role. One of his formal government titles is ‘Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.’

In a light-hearted back and forth, the minister and the presenters joked that the mishap may provide “ammunition” for the scriptwriters of W1A – a popular BBC comedy, starring Hugh Bonneville, which pokes fun at the corporation and its alleged inadequacies.

W1A is sometimes more than a comedy… Michael Gove’s interview with us this morning was delayed while he was stuck in one of our lifts for half an hour… @BBCnickrobinson apologised to the now freed Mr Gove… pic.twitter.com/SYKY2UBOp6

— BBC Radio 4 Today (@BBCr4today) January 10, 2022

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