Radio Newsbeat

From the Radio Today Site

Ditchy and Salty back together for podcast

Former Real Radio North West breakfast duo Ditchy and Salty are teaming up to do a weekly podcast together.

It comes after they were moved to separate overnight shows on the station after being told last month that their time on the station’s breakfast show was over.

Since their departure from breakfast a number of Facebook groups have been set up calling for them to be reinstated on the show.

Now, a new website from the pair says they will be doing a weekly free downloadable podcast.

Ditchy – real name David Ditchfield – previously worked at stations including Key 103, Radio Aire and Real Radio Yorkshire before joining Century FM breakfast’s Paul Salt in 2008.

The duo said in a statement on their website: “We enjoy working together and whilst that no longer seems an option at the minute we had a chat in the pub last week and after a month apart felt we wanted to repay you for all the support you continue to give and at the same time highlight to prospective employers that we will soon be on the open market (for a job!!) although we may have to work on one soon!

“We feel the simplest way of achieving both is to start producing a weekly free downloadable podcast that you will be able to listen to whenever you want!! It’s the best we can do at the minute and we hope you will enjoy it.”

GMG Radio has announced that news teams at Real Radio, Real XS and Smooth Radio are to be scaled back, following a full review of its news resource.

The group’s total of 39 journalists is expected to be cut, but Chief Executive Stuart Taylor said he didn’t anticipate the changes would have an impact on ‘overall listener experience’.

GMG Radio says all its stations will continue to produce ‘appropriate national and regionally produced news programming during peak hours’ and that each studio base will remain staffed with a ‘sufficient number of trained senior and broadcast journalists’.

GMG Radio’s Chief Executive Stuart Taylor said: “GMG Radio’s award winning news team has set new standards in commercial radio journalism during the last 10 years and our stations will continue to provide a high calibre of news programming that is relevant to the listener. The decision to reduce what’s been an extremely well-staffed team has been an incredibly difficult one but if we are to remain commercially competitive during these tough economic times then we have to ensure that we’re operating as efficiently as possible.”

At the moment, the group runs ‘news hubs’ in Manchester and Glasgow, which provide news for Real Radio and Smooth Radio in the evenings and during weekend afternoons. GMG says outside of peak programming hours, stations will ‘utilise an external news provision service where appropriate’. Smooth and Real currently only take IRN bulletins from Sky News overnight.

“We don’t anticipate that the planned staffing changes will impact materially on the overall listener experience,” Stuart Taylor added.

GMG Radio says it employs 39 staff and freelance contracted journalists and the restructure is expected to be completed in March. It has newsrooms in Manchester, Glasgow, Newcastle, Leeds and Cardiff. News bulletins for Smooth Radio have been produced by the Manchester hub since October 2010 when five regional licences in London, East Midlands, West Midlands, North West and North East merged to become a national station but have maintained regional content during daytime hours.

Following the departure of former Group News Editor James Rea to Global Radio last year, GMG announced changes which included a ‘brand news editor’ for each of the Smooth and Real brands.

The BBC Trust has begun the process to find the next Director General of the BBC, even though current postholder Mark Thompson has not announced plans to leave.

Trust chairman Lord Patten has confirmed a firm of headhunters have been appointed to scope out the type of candidates that would be required for the job.

Thompson has been in post since 2004 and has overseen the start of around £700m worth of cutbacks under the Delivering Quality First (DQF) programme.

There have been suggestions he may stand down after the London 2012 Olympics this summer.

But Lord Patten insisted in an interview with The Times that Mr Thompson would keep the role as long as he wanted. “He’s now embarked on what is the biggest year in the BBC’s history, with the Diamond Jubilee and Cultural Olympiad, the Olympics, Paralympics and so on,” he said. “So long as he wishes to remain Director-General, he will remain so and a very good one.”

Lord Patten added: “But we can’t simply ignore the importance of developing what they call in the corporate world our bench strength. I want us to be able, when the time comes, to have an intelligent view of who are possible successors and where successors should come from and what sort of job we would want them to be doing.”

The Guardian says former Radio 4 Controller and Radio Academy chair Helen Boaden is one name likely to be in the list of potential internal candidates for the DG job – along with BBC Vision director Geoge Entwistle, chief operating officer Caroline Thompson and BBC North director Pete Salmon.

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From the Media Blog site – run by Radio Netherlands

Media Network Rotating Header Image
BBC Trust opposes local radio cuts
January 23rd, 2012 – 11:10 UTC
by Andy Sennitt.
1 comment

The BBC’s controversial proposed cuts to local radio stations across England have met opposition from the corporation’s governing body, the BBC Trust. Trust chairman Lord Patten is expected to ask management to go back to the drawing board with its plans to cut £15m from the budget of the BBC’s 40 local radio stations, which if implemented would lead to the loss of 280 jobs.

This proposal prompted thousands of complaints, more than for any other part of BBC director general Mark Thompson’s Delivering Quality First (DQF) initiative to save £700m a year. The BBC Trust, which met to discuss the cost-saving proposals last Thursday, is keen to reduce the level of the cuts and is said to be particularly concerned by the proposal for neighbouring BBC local stations to share afternoon programmes.

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