This week's focus is on the white working class and its growing alienation from the political mainstream, mainly (but not wholly) because of New Labour's abandonment of any kind of class politics. For the feature, brave BBC journalists ventured from their snug base in Birmingham to visit the West Midlands town where the break down in traditional political affiliations are most acute - and that would be Stoke-on-Trent.
For readers unfamiliar with the politics of the Potteries, the council chamber has gone from being all-Labour (that's right, 12 years ago all 60 Stoke councillors sat for Labour) to a low of just 16. It supports the city's Labour mayor, Mark Meredith in coalition with the Lib Dems and a motley alliance of Tories and "independents". Nine BNP councillors sit in opposition, so do nine (or is it 10?) 'City Independent' councillors, a flotsam and jetsam of "non-aligned" independents, petty two-councillor groups, and a single Libertarian LibDem. The BNP have the highest profile of the beneficiaries of this decomposition, but are by no mean the only ones doing well off the back of it.
What our comrades will be doing is giving Stoke SP's take on the city's political crisis. How much of their interview makes the final cut is anyone's guess - hopefully it will be more than a 10 second soundbite!The Politics Show is on BBC One at 12pm, Sunday. For those outside the West Mids, you can view it by going to BBC One West Midlands on channel 979 on Sky. The programme will also go up on the show's website, which will be linked to from here as soon as it is available.
Edit: The programme can be viewed on BBC iplayer at The Politics Show url above. Interesting to see leading BNP councillor Michael Coleman admit his party uses misery to fulfill its objectives.