Open Academy students quiz Arts Council chairman and Big Brother pioneer Sir Peter Bazalgette

Sir Peter Bazalgette at Open Academy, Norwich. Pictured, centre, with principal Jon Platten, futures

Sir Peter Bazalgette at Open Academy, Norwich. Pictured, centre, with principal Jon Platten, futures coordinator Sue Cant and some key stage 4 and sixth form students.Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

Open Academy students have questioned the chairman of the Arts Council about the disparity of funding between London and other parts of the country.

Sir Peter Bazalgette, who previously developed reality and lifestyle television programmes such as Big Brother, Ready Steady Cook and Changing Rooms, yesterday spoke to Year 10, 11 and sixth form students studying media, film, food technology, and art and design.

The visit was organised by the Speakers for Schools charity, which provides visits to state schools by eminent speakers.

Principal Jon Platten said: 'He was a very, very inspirational speaker and he did connect well, and I think the students got a huge amount from it. It is always good to do what we can to raise aspirations.'

Other questions included what his most valuable GCSE was, which prompted him to talk about tying qualifications to what you want to do.


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