Peter Knowles, Controller, BBC Parliament


Last updated November 2009

Peter Knowles is the editor of the radio programmes Today In Parliament and Yesterday In Parliament, the TV channel BBC Parliament and the newly launched website Democracy Live.

The Parliamentary Programmes team produces BBC Radio 4's Today In Parliament, which began life in 1945, and Yesterday In Parliament, just two years younger! It also produces the daily digest of Westminster debate in The Record, for BBC Parliament and the BBC News Channel.

BBC Parliament is the digital TV channel for debate and ideas, with coverage from Westminster, the devolved Parliament and Assemblies and the European Parliament. The channel shows uninterrupted coverage of debates and hearings as well as daily and weekly political programmes. Showings of historic elections and other archive programmes have been especially popular with viewers.

Democracy Live launched in November 2009. It offers live and on-demand video coverage of the UK's national political institutions and the European Parliament. The site features an innovative 8-stream video wall on the front page. Alongside the video there are guides to how the different institutions work and who sits in them. The search engine is a BBC "first" – it uses speech-to-text to take you straight to the user's point of interest in the video.

Peter's career in journalism began with Carlisle News Agency and Border TV in 1984.

Joining the BBC as a news trainee, he worked in the Manchester and Leeds newsrooms before going to the Nine O'Clock News as a producer, at the time of the first Gulf War.

In 1991 Peter became one of the first output editors on the new BBC World Service Television News and he was later appointed news editor for BBC World. He was responsible for the output during the war in Kosovo.He was overnight output editor for BBC Television News on the night of the death of Princess Diana.

He became Managing Editor, Television News, responsible for BBC News 24 and BBC World, in 1999.

Peter joined BBC Parliament in 2001.

Peter was born in 1961 in Bolton. He was educated at Bolton School, studied English at St Catherine's College, Oxford, and took an MBA at Bradford University.