Audience Councils

Role and remit

The BBC Audience Council Northern Ireland works to ensure that the voice of the local audience is heard at the very heart of decision making in the BBC.

The Council advises the BBC Trust, the governing body of the BBC, which has considerable power to wield on behalf of licence fee payers. There are also BBC Audience Councils in England, Scotland and Wales.

The Council provides the Trust with an assessment of BBC performance in Northern Ireland, taking into account all of the BBC’s network and local services across television, radio and online. Each year it publishes an Annual Review.

It contributes to Trust decision-making, for example in providing advice on behalf of local audiences for the Trust’s programme of service reviews, impartiality reviews and other major decisions. Our advice to a wide range of Trust consultations on strategy, services and editorial standards – is available in the Your Voice section.

The Council also raises priorities and emerging issues for local audiences with the Trust, so that it can consider these in planning its work.

A significant proportion of the Council's time is spent engaging directly with audiences around Northern Ireland to better understand what they need and expect from the BBC. The Council meets around eight times a year to discuss audience views and evaluate BBC performance, drawing on a wide range of evidence and views.

There are eleven members of the Audience Council who give their time freely to represent the audience. See Who's Who. For more information about the role of an Audience Council member and the selection process see here.