BBC Journalists Strike
A strike at the BBC by the National Union of Journalists began earlier this morning. UPDATED AT 09:35
A strike at the BBC by the National Union of Journalists began earlier this morning. The strike is over proposed reforms to the BBC Pension Scheme and the NJU has voted to reject a deal offered by the BBC over the reforms. The Union has over 4000 members within the corporation and the two day strike, it claims, will severely disrupt the BBC’s output with many well known presenters not turning up – according to the Union. Sian Williams and Bill Turnbull were absent today from Breakfast, BBC One’s morning news programme. Instead a replacement presenter in a BBC News Studio was fronting the show.
We are disappointed that the NUJ have gone ahead with today’s industrial action. This is despite the other four unions accepting our revised offer, and feedback from staff that indicates the same. It is the public who lose out and we apologise to our audience for any disruption to services. – BBC Press Statement.
A revised schedule has been issued by the BBC for Radio Four due to the industrial action programmes such as Today, The World At One and PM will be absent. As for the BBC News Channel it could air just brief news updates throughout the day with the rest of its schedule filled by repeats – however, as the strike is still only hours old it is unclear whether this will be the case or not.
Updated at 09:35
The strike at the BBC which began at midnight has had a notable effect on BBC News output this morning. Breakfast was this morning presented by Gavin Grey, someone who many viewers of Breakfast will not be familiar with. There were no regional opt outs for local news this morning, instead going into a continuous flow. Simon McCoy took over presenting duties at 8.30am. Main competition at the time Daybreak will be hoping to pick up some of the viewers looking for more local and national news.
The BBC has said that BBC Radio 5 Live Breakfast went ahead fine this morning, but BBC Radio 4 Today programme was replaced with programming and hourly news updates instead. BBC Radio 3 also had no breakfast programme and many of the nations radio stations were affected. Local radio stations are said to be mainly unaffected by the strike.
The NUJ have said that 95% of the World Service newsroom staff are out on the strike. They also say that the BBC did have trouble finding someone to front BBC One’s Breakfast programme this morning as many had refused to present it, opting to stand by those out on the picket line. Despite speculation that the BBC News Channel would be forced to air only occasional/hourly updates there has been continual coverage of today’s stories on the channel. However, there is currently just one main anchor, instead of the usual two, for the channel although weather and sports round-ups are as normal.