FIONA BRUCE made an assertive start to her stewardship as BBC Question Time host, winning plaudits from viewers. But some have complained she needs to speak louder.
Ms Bruce, known for her journalism, newsreading and presenting, is now at the helm of the flagship political debate programme after David Dimbleby stepped down at the end of last year. Viewers took to Twitter to praise her ability of “cutting through the political waffle” and holding the panellist to account. Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily Thornberry and Tory MP James Cleverly were among the panellists.
Cass Blakeman on Twitter said: “Fiona Bruce making a cracking job of chairing BBC Question Time.
“She doesn’t allow James Cleverly and Melanie Phillips to spout slogans, without holding them to account.”
Another viewer, John Gregory, was equally impressed by her manner of questioning the guests.
He said: “Get in there Fiona! Don’t let the wafflemonster Thornberry ramble on!”
One admiring Twitter user even suggested Ms Bruce might be better than the politicians at their own job.
Roberta Walker said: “Fiona Bruce is actually challenging the panel. Amazing, perhaps she should be negotiating our Brexit deal?”
However, there were a number of complaints about the new host being too quiet.
Steve Biddle said: “I can’t hear Fiona Bruce. Tell her to stop whispering!”
He added: “Fiona Bruce starts her sentences nice and loud, but by the time she gets to half way, I can’t hear her…
“Is it just me? Why can’t she ‘present’ like the others in the panel?”
Mr Biddle was not the only Question Time fan to experience this problem.
Another Twitter user said: “I’m glad I’m not alone in thinking Fiona Bruce is mumbling too much.
“I can hardly make out what she’s saying.”
Richard Hewitt said: “Completely agree. No problem hearing the panellists, but struggling with the chairwoman.”
In agreement, a fourth Twitter user added: “I agree – I find this with her news reading too sometimes.
“Think she is marvellous though.”
Despite this, Question Time fans were very positive and commented on how Ms Bruce seems to step in more than her predecessor.
Twitter user Average Man said: “Full marks to Fiona Bruce on her debut.
“She was much more interventionist than Dimbleby in holding panel members to account for their views.”
Jayne Sullivan added: “Fiona Bruce doing well! Stopping politicians talking in sound bites!
“Asking well-informed questions and interventions.”
Paul K was particularly pleased with her handling of the Labour frontbencher.
He said: “Emily Thornberry – face like a slapped arse after Fiona Bruce wouldn’t let her get away with spouting bulls***.”