BBC to cut 450 jobs across the News division

The BBC has announced job cuts across the board including posts at BBC Radio 5 Live in a bid to save £80m by 2022.

At 5 Live, 12 posts will be closed but 2 will be created in the digital team – resulting in 10 job losses. One of those will be in London and the remaining 9 in Salford. 5 Live Sport is not affected, nor is BBC Local Radio.

In London there will be posts closed in the Radio Newsroom, which makes bulletins for BBC’s other national radio networks.

Fran Unsworth, Director of News and Current Affairs, told staff on Wednesday that the BBC newsroom will be reorganised along a ‘story-led’ model, focusing on news stories more than on programmes or platforms.

She said: “There will be post closures at 5 Live driven by the changing listening habits of the audience and demand for digital content. World Update on World Service English will be closed, alongside other schedule changes. This is in addition to the changes to Asian language services outlined last year.

Also, there will be a review of the number of presenters we have and how they work.”

A BBC spokesperson told RadioToday: “These changes are part of a wider announcement affecting all of BBC News. When making these difficult decisions we have focused on reflecting changing listener habits and maximising the growing demand for our digital content.”

The changes are designed to reduce duplication in articles and will see a reduction in the overall number of stories covered.

There will be further investment in digital news, with a new version of the BBC News app, and more BBC journalists will be based outside London in future.

Fran Unsworth continues: “The BBC has to face up to the changing way audiences are using us. We have to adapt and ensure we continue to be the world’s most trusted news organisation, but crucially, one which is also relevant for the people we are not currently reaching.

“We need to reshape BBC News for the next decade in a way which saves substantial amounts of money. We are spending too much of our resources on traditional linear broadcasting and not enough on digital.

“Our duty as a publicly funded broadcaster is to inform, educate, and entertain every citizen. But there are many people in this country that we are not serving well enough.

“I believe that we have a vital role to play locally, nationally and internationally. In fact, we are fundamental to contributing to a healthy democracy in the UK and around the world. If we adapt we can continue to be the most important news organisation in the world.”

Away from radio, the Victoria Derbyshire programme on television will close later this year and there will be a reduction in the number of films produced by Newsnight, which will lead to post closures.

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  1. Robson Lawe says

    This is utterly disgusting. Nothing to do with changing habits and everything to to with money. Sad statement on the age we live in.

  2. Radio Geordie says

    Basically, if you’re white and male, pack your bags as the PC brigade won’t allow them to sack anyone else.

    1. Jonthan says

      Victoria Derbyshire isn’t a woman.

      1. Jonathan says

        That was supposed to say “is a woman”!

        1. Radio Geordie says

          But she’s not cheap is she?

          The main point is that white males are about the only people you can pick on now without any fear of the race or sexism card being played.

          1. Jonathan says

            It has nothing to do with race or sexism, it’s about statistics. There’s more white men than any other group so of course more of them are going to lose their jobs. Look at Global, most of their local breakfast hosts were white men. Would you say they were unfairly picked on because of their race?

  3. Pat says

    I don’t get this people aren’t watching linear channels we need to put the content in digital argument.It seems to fit in with their cater for younger people mentality at present though.NEws channels should cover as many stories as possible otherwise they become boring and you don’t get the whole picture of what is happening in the world.I bet they still keep,sending their newsreaders to do their bulletins around the world when a local reporter would suffice,also people standing outside Westminster or Buckingham Palace live at 5am for what purpose?.If they really can’t afford to do proper coverage maybe they should just shut the news channel down.

  4. ADrian says

    I don’t avoid 5 live because I’m looking for more digital content, i avoid it for all the idle chat that seems to have replaced serious news coverage.-I think their analysis is flawed or they are just giving excuses.I expect it to get worse now!.

    1. Colin Hanslip says

      No great loss, BBC news is now a non stop stream of Tory propaganda instead of the trustworthy source it used to be. Shame about the job losses, hopefully those affected can find somewhere where balanced reporting is expected

  5. Paul K says

    “They’re are many people on this country we are not serving well enough”.

    And the best solution quite clearly is to slash the budget and sack 450 staff. That’ll make it so much better!

    1. mb23 says

      The budget cuts are caused by the Government passing on the cost of free over-75s licence fees to the BBC, without raising the level of the licence fee.

  6. Stuart O. says

    They could save more money with their current plan to switch off some BBC local radio MW transmitters by switching them off ASAP along with some other MW transmitters not currently in the plan to be switched off. Maybe even some of the lower powered BBC Radio 5 Live transmitters and Radio 4 LW on MW transmitters (603, 720, 756, 774, 1449 and 1485 kHz) could be switched off or the higher and lower powered transmitters for both Radio 4 and 5 could have their powers reduced to save some money there too.

  7. Phil says

    Always wondered why the presenters on the news channel normally cover about three or more hours then they have another newsreader in just for the six o`clock news.

    1. Adrian says

      Yes,the news channel presenter on most evenings seem s to be on from 6.30 until nearly midnight.Now I know they are not on air all the time but they are having to do regular bulletins whereas some times on BBC 1 there is one presenter at 6 and another at 10 and that’s the only bulletin they do.Also at weekends there is one presenter in BBC 1 doing two 15 minutes or so bulletins while each of the three news channel anchors is on for four of five hours.



    1. ciaran flavin says

      A very good point, mind you , I wouldnt mind being on tv for 3 or 4 hours most days.

  9. Dave says

    Good old BBC they much rather sack 400 people, cut front line programing, instead of saving money by scrapping it, s radio 4 long wave on long wave & switching off all medium wave. They talk about a digital future so why are they wasting millions on medium & long wave.



  11. Susan Hall says

    Aren’t the BBC cuts more to do with poor management and overlapping news broadcasts? One international and domestic news service is all that is needed – items could then be shared, rather than duplicated ad infinitum

  12. neal says

    No Management or Top Floor losing their jobs then????!!!! No of course not. They protect themselves by sacking everybody else!!

  13. Lee says

    BBC TV news rooms and BBC radio news rooms should share more resources, Also why can’t the presenters do longer presenting hours. For example Huw Edwards presents from 5pm until 6pm on the BBC News Channel then the BBC get someone else to present the news at 6pm on BBC1. Why can’t Huw present for a day shift like many of us, say 2.30pm until 10.30pm (including comfort breaks of course), which includes presenting on the BBC News Channel and sharing the BBC1 main bulletins at 6pm and 10pm? There are many effeicences that the BBC could make especially to national and international news coverage and covering main events such as the Olympics, but I wouldn’t want them to dumb down it’s content as much as UK Commercial Radio and TV.

    1. Phil says

      They could do what they do at Weekends during the week as well with half hour bulletins and the likes of the Travel show to fill the other half hour.

  14. James Martin says

    They just need to remove the layers of duplication. We don’t need separate teams for BBC Local, R4 and 5Live.

    A BBC Local newsroom should be able to cover a story in the provinces for ALL radio. If you wanted to get really joined up, they could do telly as well.

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