BBC Conference Cuts Consternation

Word reaches Guido that the BBC have seriously scaled back their conference coverage this year, with only a handful of hacks making the trips to Brighton, Birmingham and Manchester. While Beeb journalists have in the past taken up around half the space in conference media centres, we won’t be seeing the likes of Andrew Neil and Jeremy Paxman there this year. Newsnight as well as the Daily and Sunday Politics programmes won’t be sending their usual numbers around the country as part of a BBC economy drive that is said to be saving £500,000.

Guido hears that regional journalists are particularly annoyed at the decision. BBC political programmes chief Sue Inglish phoned Tory press office to demand that the free pass applications for BBC journos be withdrawn – this was apparently done without notifying said hacks. Given that party conferences are a rare chance to get big hitters on local airwaves there is considerable unrest in the ranks. Paxman is said to be less bothered about having to stay at home…

UPDATE: Paul Waugh shows how this plan has already started to backfire.




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