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A big day for BBC News

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Mary Hockaday Mary Hockaday | 10:11 UK time, Monday, 9 July 2012

Most of the time a big day in the BBC Newsroom is defined by the stories. The Japanese tsunami. The death of Gaddafi. The Eurozone crisis. The Diamond Jubilee.

The Newsroom in New Broadcasting House, pictured before the big move


Today is a different kind of big day for BBC News. Our new Newsroom in central London is open for business.

At 11:00 BST we broadcast World Briefing live from studio SL1 for World Service audiences and our World online team has been publishing coverage of the US heatwave, the floods in Russia and events in Syria from the new Newsroom for our UK and international online news services.

Many other teams are already working in other parts of New Broadcasting House - including all the BBC's international language services. But today is the day when the BBC Newsroom at BH gets up and running.

NBH is a wonderful new home, constructed to the east of the original BBC Broadcasting House with its beautiful prow fronted by Eric Gill's famous sculpture of Ariel. Now seven floors of striking glass and steel complement the original Portland stone, curving around a new welcoming piazza just north of Oxford Circus. In terms of funding, the new development has been financed by a public-private partnership involving a special bond, and the overall move has enabled savings for the BBC of an estimated £736m. More details here.

Over the next few months the journalists now working in the Newsroom will be joined by many others. Next, UK Online, World News and the team that produces the summaries and bulletins on Radios 2, 3, 4 and 6 Music will be moving in.

They'll then be joined by the News at One, Six and Ten, the BBC News channel and our newsgathering staff. Our video editing and graphics teams, studio directors and studio managers are also moving in, developing and testing all the new kit right through until early next year when the newsroom will be fully operational.

Until then, we'll still be making much of our news output at Television Centre in west London. But today is an important milestone, as the BBC's future Newsroom starts work.

New Broadcasting House gives us new studios, new operating systems and new technology. But more than this, it offers our journalists a purpose-built newsroom fit for the 21st Century, truly transforming the way we work.

We are bringing all our journalists who serve UK and global audiences together for the first time. Our coverage of international news for audiences in the UK will be strengthened by working alongside colleagues from World Service.

And we have the chance to make sure that the right teams are working together to support sharing of ideas and content. We know that audiences get their BBC news from various platforms - radio, television and digital - from connected televisions to PCs, mobiles and tablets, and in the new Newsroom it will be easy to share what we do across those devices.

Our job is to do the very best high quality journalism we can, and then make sure it reaches you however you choose to get your news. New TV studios also give us the opportunity to refresh the look and feel of our news programmes, and we'll be using the backdrop of the building itself to give audiences a sense of the quality and openness of the building.

In the high-ceilinged space filled with light from the building's windows and atria, our international web team and World Service radio news team are now in place. Our job in New Broadcasting House for years to come is to produce brilliant BBC news services from an ambitious newsroom. That work starts today.

Mary Hockaday is head of the BBC newsroom.


  • Comment number 1.

    Sounds amazing Mary - congrats. Makes sense for the physical newsroom to align with the evolving use of social media and other technologies in the future newsroom - I hope it's designed with some interactivity with viewers in mind!

  • Comment number 2.

    "Over the next few months ... the team that produces the summaries and bulletins on Radios 2, 3, 4 and 6 Music will be moving in".

    Of course, the team that make most of the BBC's Radio News output (5Live) were moved hundreds of miles away to Manchester.

    Quite the integrated newsroom - or not.

  • Comment number 3.

    I prefer to get my news as it happens on the internet, you filter news to feed us what government and big business want us to know, the public are more savvy than you think, and you can't fool all of the people all of the time now we have the internet, I rarely watch TV now and when I do it is with an awareness of your consumer pressure, and government / big business bias

  • Comment number 4.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 5.

    I know how important a sharp, new, properly-equipped & thoughtfully-organized working environment can be; so: CONGRATS & ENJOY!
    I can't completely stop thinking about all the people (& number growing) who have no home at all. In tribute to these people & all other people in need, may the BBC honour them with insightful, objective & quality news - regardless of pressure(s) to do otherwise.

  • Comment number 6.

    Sorry dear but if you're all so into BIG NEWS DAYS then why do you completely ignore MIXED MARTIAL ARTS? Anderson Silva V Chael Sonnen was one of the biggest pay per view sporting events ever -and not a word about it on the BBC.. too many boxing and rugby stories taking up all the room?

  • Comment number 7.

    Splendid. Can't or won't improve the journalism, so let's have a new newsroom instead. Any chance of less errors and typos? I'm only partially a tiny minded little git and I find something obvious wrong on your news website almost every day. Oh, and do get the DG's name spelled right.

  • Comment number 8.

    Oh how exciting - any chance of some pictures?

  • Comment number 9.

    There are always estimated savings in public-private partnerships. They all soon turn to actual losses - for the taxpayer!

    More importantly, is when will BBC news regain its courage and independence, lost at the time of David Kelly's death.

  • Comment number 10.

    I'm pleased for those at BBC news, what with their Big Day.

    However, the interest doesn't seem to be reciprocated, in that the BBC doesn't seem at all interested in whether what's happening in the world makes it a Big Day for any of us, by reducing blog topics almost to nil.

    I suppose we kept leaving The Wrong Kind Of Posts, though...

  • Comment number 11.

    Maybe by grouping most of the BBC news in one ivory tower the BBC want to remove the last bit of outside influence on their one sided opinions?

    Surprised this wasn’t announced solely on twitter, every debate and comment from the BBC seems to be conducted on that medium.
    Still twitter does keep any debate off the BBC, we don’t want the public involved in public broadcasting do we!!

  • Comment number 12.

    13:41 9th Jul 2012, englishvote wrote:

    "...Surprised this wasn’t announced solely on twitter, every debate and comment from the BBC seems to be conducted on that medium..."


    Indeed. It's very effective at preventing any kind of informed or developed forum from arising. Ideal for preserving the status quo, I'd say. Can't think who that might suit...

  • Comment number 13.

    It's fantastic that you now have a large number of teams, all doing exactly the same job, working side by side.

    How much could have been saved by having a single teams for TV and Radio, in a much smaller building outside Central London?

  • Comment number 14.

    Isn't it telling how the Beeb make a big song and dance about the squillions being spent on Manchester... but kept much quieter about another huge shedload of cash being spent on the relocation of the news facilities in London in the current economic climate?

    That'll be the same economic climate that the BBC news keeps telling us is so bad.

    Oh, the irony...

  • Comment number 15.


  • Comment number 16.

    It looks wonderful - I saw the new room last Thursday from the Media Café - very impressive. I look forward to seeing it in operation.

    Unfortunately I'm seeing less of BBC News these days since the Multiscreen was abandoned a few weeks ago. I'm having to use a competitor's multiscreen for my 5 minute morning catchup!

  • Comment number 17.

    Why isn't the BBC embracing the Digital Workplace? Do web journos really need an office?

  • Comment number 18.

    Re #7: "Splendid. Can't or won't improve the journalism, so let's have a new newsroom instead. Any chance of less errors and typos?"

    Ah, I think you'll find it's fewer errors and typos, not less. I'm sure you won't mind the correction...

  • Comment number 19.

    Oh and by the way, it's work anywhere week in the UK this week - and the people who are and should be most capable of working anywhere, have a shiny, expensive new office...

  • Comment number 20.

    So more light in the new building to produce more propaganda like the "death of Gaddafi" how about telling the truth for once in the news in this case that he was brutally murdered and then maybe start remembering what journalism is meant to be about. I will not be holding my breath.

  • Comment number 21.

    "The new development has been financed by a public-private partnership involving a special bond - so no licence fee monies have been used for the construction."

    Was the financier a philanthropist? Or have you made the usual mistake of confusing "funding" and "financing"?

  • Comment number 22.

    A British corporation that is the biggest and most respected news organisation in the world opens the biggest and most technologically advanced news-gathering facility in the world and all some people can do is snark.

  • Comment number 23.

    10:12 10th Jul 2012, Ivan wrote:

    "...A British corporation that is the...most respected news organisation in the world..."


    I fear you may indeed be correct, Ivan.

  • Comment number 24.

    To the punctilious poster above - captain_insensible (comment No.7) - it's 'fewer', not 'less'. People in glass houses (or even 'seven floors of striking glass') should not throw stones. In fairness to BBC News, that's not the type of basic mistake they would make.

  • Comment number 25.

    Rhethreg, my grammar is gooder than yours....

  • Comment number 26.

    Any chance the BBC News team could allow comments on the following story:

    It is a disgrace that someone can apply for legal aid for this while many more deserving recipients are turned down....

  • Comment number 27.

    "Most of the time a big day in the BBC Newsroom is defined by the stories. The Japanese tsunami. The death of Gaddafi. The Eurozone crisis..."

    Yes News stories but on Sunday, after waiting for the News bulletin which incidentally was additionally of reduced duration it opened with Wimbledon then moved on to the F1 squeezing in scant seconds on a non-sport story then back to guess what, sport.

  • Comment number 28.

    Lennox was murdered in Belfast. Plans to visit Belfast or any other place in the country NOW CANCELED.
    Animal lover, owner, foster mom, adopter - USA


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