The BBC has suspended breakfast local TV news updates, to ensure it can continue to produce shows such as BBC North West Tonight

The BBC has been forced to suspend local TV news updates in BBC Breakfast after the impact of the ‘pingdemic’ stretched rotas to the limit.

The corporation has confirmed the twice-hourly bulletins will be off air until September.

The local updates were a casualty last year too, as the BBC set itself up to focus local TV resource on its flagship 6.30pm bulletins as the pandemic took hold in the UK.

The BBC said: “Like employers in every area of the economy, we’re experiencing unprecedented staffing shortages caused by Covid. …


It was one of the most memorable illustrations of the pandemic — now the title behind it has used it again to caution against panic buying.

News has been rife this week about the prospect of empty shelves in supermarkets due to the ‘pingdemic’ which has seen more than 1m people asked to isolate to stop the spread of Covid-19 in the last week alone.

Now the Yorkshire Post has urged readers to think before responding to pictures of empty shelves.

Online, it shared a cartoon by the title’s Graeme Bandeira, first published last year, showing a pensioner in a supermarket presented with nothing but empty shelves.

At the time, the cartoon was widely praised for showing how the rush to panic buy — a real…


Jeremy

Two new Community Editor roles and a Live specialist reporting team across Norfolk and Suffolk were revealed today as part of a newsroom restructure announced by Archant.

Following hard on the heels of the appointment of two daily editors for its Norwich and Ipswich titles last month, the publisher is appointing more editor positions in a renewed commitment to its local weekly titles.

It is also appointing Chief reporters to take charge of its smaller weekly titles in Norfolk in what it says is a shift in emphasis to improve the provision of local journalism for its online and print…


Football.Scotland returns as part of Reach’s plans for expand in Scotland

Publisher Reach today announced plans to expand its Scotland-based editorial operations, with a new Scottish Express online edition for the first time, the launch of a new Aberdeen Live site and the return of Football Scotland.

The Scottish Express site will be headed up by Editor Ben Borland, who will continue to report to Reach Scotland Editor-in-Chief David Dick and work closely with Express Editor-in-Chief Gary Jones.12 new roles have been created to support the new site, including a Head of Live News and three politics writers.

AberdeenLive follows in the footsteps of existing Scottish online newsbrands Glasgow Live and…


WiltshireLive, Reach’s newest digital-only website, has launched, delivering a new live news, features and entertainment service to one of the most idyllic parts of the country.

WiltshireLive is a big part of the company’s ambition to create a local news brand in every county in England and Wales. Several more sites are due to launch in the coming weeks.

The site aims to bring the best and most comprehensive news service for communities from Swindon to Salisbury, Chippenham to Trowbridge and beyond, engaging with its audience on the issues that matter most to them.

Reach has brought together a team…


The new team covering Celtic Way and Rangers Review

Two new sports websites have launched, declaring ‘war’ on sports clickbait. The Celtic Way and Rangers Review are both from Newsquest in Glasgow, and announced their arrival to fans last week.

Each site cost £1 a month for the first six months, and £2.99 after that.

A launch article on the Glasgow Times website said the websites will be run with a strong focus on fan culture and engagement with our journalists delivering insightful and entertaining content every day.

Jonny McFarlane will edit Rangers Review, with a team including Joshua Barrie and Derek Clark.

Celtic Way will include veteran Parkhead…


An editor has urged regional press publishers to curb the ‘poaching’ of trainee journalists.

John Wilson, the editor of the Hereford Times, said the surge in recruitment amongst the country’s regional publishers had led to an increase in cases of journalists being approached by other companies.

In recent months, Newsquest, JPIMedia and Reach have all embarked on significant recruitment drives as publishers focus on driving digital audience and revenue growth.

But John urged reporter undergoing training to rebuff such offers — and seek advice from colleagues and editors.

John Wilson

Writing on his blog, John said: “Newsrooms are again recruiting after a…


Owen Meredith

News Media Association chief executive Owen Meredith spoke of the challenges facing news media publishers and of the importance of local news brands to their communities during a Westminster Media Forum conference on the future of news this week.

Owen said: “Local news media is read by 40.6 million people in print and online every month. That in itself is a great testimony, not only to the importance of this media, but to the unique trust and the enduring relationship that local newspapers have with readers.

“This unique relationship has been acutely felt throughout the pandemic as local media titles…


The Community News Project was launched in 2019 as a partnership between the NCTJ, Facebook and nine regional news publishers, with the aim of supporting quality local journalism and improving the diversity of newsrooms.

As the project is extended by another 12 months, Martin Wright, editor-in-chief of the Express & Star and Shropshire Star, reflects on his experience of the project so far.

When the Community News Project was conceived in late 2018, we had a lot of questions. How would it work? How hands-on would Facebook be? What would happen to the reporters once their contracts ended? Would the…


The death of a toddler who swallowed a battery button has prompted a new campaign from regional journalists in Stoke.

StokeonTrentLive and the Sentinel have launched the Harper-Lee’s Law campaign.

Harper-Lee Fanthorpe, aged 2, died after swallowing a button battery from a remote control.

Knowing Harper-Lee’s mum Stacy Nicklin wanted to bring about some meaningful change in her daughter’s memory, the team contacted her and offered to partner with her for a campaign to get the law changed, with the goal of preventing any future child deaths caused by these highly dangerous items present in many seemingly innocuous household items.

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