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Salmon Slams Media Over BBC's Salford move

BBC North boss blasts Mail on Sunday 'myths'

Written by . Published on August 8th 2011.

Salmon Slams Media Over BBC's Salford move

PETER Salmon, the director of BBC North, has hit back at the Mail on Sunday over a story claiming 5Live would become a weaker news organisation when it leaves London.

In a statement released to media website How Do, Salmon claims the Mail overegged claims made in the BBC's risk register about the impact of the move to Salford.

"BBC North will always have its naysayers, but the move remains on time and on budget."

The story claimed the register and Salmon had made a 'deeply embarrassing' suggestion that '5Live’s status as a national news provider is downgraded within BBC news as it moves North.'

'5Live could cease to be the home of breaking national news and begin to sound like a local radio station,' it said. 

Salmon said: "The Mail on Sunday today followed up the publication of BBC North's Risk Register, "Boss warns 5Live in the North will sound 'like local radio' in embarrassing memo".

"As I wrote in a blog last week, the BBC - like every big public organisation - has a Risk Register in which we ask departments to log the broadest range of hypothetical risks that could happen. However that doesn't mean that we expect them to occur. And what the Mail On Sunday has chosen not to include are the controls and mitigations that the BBC has put in place to counter these risks should they arise.

"In the case of Radio 5Live this includes the fact that a section of news gathering is moving to Salford; we are maintaining a Radio 5Live presence in the London newsroom; we are increasing collaboration across the News operations situated in Salford Quays to make planning and execution of response to events more efficient, and finally that the BBC Breakfast move will increase our journalistic presence and will also further focus the energy and processes of news gathering on-site.

"BBC North will always have its naysayers, but the move remains on time and on budget. The article perpetuates the myth that the project is costing £877m and that 'scores of staff' have not moved. The reality is very different. The cost of the project is just under £200m and 55% of staff have opted to move - significantly higher than the 35% national average for a move of this scale and ambition.

"We have over 700 people now working across the site and in terms of Radio 5Live with very few exceptions most of the talent are moving with the station, alongside a high percentage of the production teams. I have every confidence that the strong senior and middle management team at the network will rise to any challenge they might face."

In February Confidential ran this story about some of the rubbish the Daily Mail is running: click here.

Follow Simon Binns on Twitter @simonbinns

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9 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

AnonymousAugust 8th 2011.

I hate the Mail and they hate us - but shouldn't we be at least thanking them here for "exposing" the hypocrisy and half-heartedness of many within the BBC about the move north?

Jonathan Schofield -editorAugust 9th 2011.

Dear Anon, think what you're saying. The BBC aren't half-hearted and this move is utterly superb for the city. In February Confidential ran this story about some of the rubbish the Daily Mail is running: www.manchesterconfidential.co.uk/…/Daily-Mail-rubbish…

The Daily Mail and the Mail on Sunday are the enemy here, not the Beeb

CBAugust 9th 2011.

who cares if Salmon didn't move up here. Big WOW. He's up here doing his job, end of.

Only good anti-piece with any weight was the AA Gil piece in The Times a while back. The Mail is the Mail though. They do forget though that they do have readers in and around Manchester though who maybe pro-BBC North.

Simon SmithAugust 9th 2011.

Is it possible for 5 Live to become a weaker news organisation when the government ordered move to Manchester takes place?

Listen to the Richard Bacon show.

It doesn't matter where dumbed down trashy broadcasting is manufactured.

Simon SmithAugust 10th 2011.

Mel, I don't hate the BBC. I hate having to pay for it because many others love the trash it mass manufactures. Let the mobs pay for their own trash broadcasting just like they pay for their own burgers, lager, vulgar clothing, Argos jewellery and grim furniture from retail parks.

Radio 5 is supposed to be a sports and news station. That's why several other brodcasters have complained that the BBC is failing in its public service responsibilities by allowing the station to air lots of celebrity chit-chat, especially on the Richard Bacon show.

The arrival of a junk, downmarket radio station does nothing to enhance Manchester's reputation as a city.

We should be ashamed that the BBC is to have a large presence in our region. That so many seem proud is pitiable.

Let London keep 5 Live.

1 Response: Reply To This...
MelAugust 10th 2011.

Fair dos. I have to say, although irrelevant to your point of view, the BBC produces slightly less trash for the mass market than other channels......;)

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