Please, stick to the subject…
The 2.00pm talk by Dr Suzannah Lipscomb on Hidden Killers of the Post-War Home promised so much but thanks to its chairing fell short.
The speaker herself was terrific - smart, sassy and clearly passionate about her subject and of course the topic itself was fascinating, but sadly it all seemed a bit disjointed.
Indeed, if often felt like nothing more than an advert for the launch of the new BBC Four series than a stand-alone talk on the subject itself.
Plus, her interviewer seem determined to go off on tangents entirely unrelated to the theme of the talk than focusing on the title advertised (for instance, she insisted on commenting, cringingly, on Dr Lipscomb’s cosmetic appeal for reasons entirely superfluous and unconnected).
It should have been a stand-out talk at this year’s festival - quirky, intriguing and wry - but instead felt like a huge billboard promotion for Dr Lipscomb’s looks rather than her obvious knowledge and insight.
This is not a slight on Dr Lipscomb; just the manner in which the talk was directed