BBC London journalists are to go on strike this Wednesday and Thursday in a continuation of their campaign against management plans to reduce the number of local programmes broadcast and cut jobs.
Members of the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) will form picket lines on both days outside BBC Broadcasting House, joining fellow BBC local staff in similar action across England.
The BBC announced last autumn its intention to axe local network programmes on weekday afternoons from 2pm as well reducing night time and weekend output, and to replace them with wider regional or national output.
The corporation argued at the time that its changes would enable about £19 million to be put into a new “digital-led” multimedia operation for England, but critics claim distinctive and irreplaceable coverage of local issues will be lost.
This will be the second time BBC London staff and counterparts elsewhere in the country have withdrawn their labour over the issue, having held a one-day strike in March (pictured) followed by a work to rule.
Cuts to the BBC’s World Service have also been drawn up following the decision in January 2022 of now former culture secretary Nadine Dorries during the prime ministership of ex-Mayor of London Boris Johnson to freeze the BBC licence fee for two years .
The NUJ said last week that a survey of its BBC Local members across the country in television, radio and online had found that 93 per cent of them no longer have confidence in the corporation’s senior leadership.
The BBC’s plans for changing its local output have drawn expressions of concern from current London Mayor Sadiq Khan, minister for London Paul Scully and Scully’s fellow London MP Julia Lopez in November 2022 during her second period as a minster with the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.
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