Geldof raps government over Northern Ireland's omission from news pilots

LONDON - Bob Geldof, co-founder of TV production company Ten Alps, has attacked the Government's omission of Northern Ireland from regional news pilots.

Bob Geldof: rapped government over Northern Ireland's omission from news pilots
Bob Geldof: rapped government over Northern Ireland's omission from news pilots

Geldof's company plans to bid for a licence to operate regional ITV news services in Northern Ireland.

The firm is in discussions with the Belfast Telegraph about bidding for any of the so-called Independently Funded News Consortium (IFNC) pilot contracts tendered for regional ITV news services.

IFNCs are a key part of the Government's policy for ensuring the continued provision of regional news on ITV once the broadcaster withdraws from the genre post digital switchover.

The Government is consulting on the idea until Tuesday (22 September) - after which it will launch three pilots of local news consortia, one each in Scotland, Wales and an English region next year.

However, Northern Ireland was not designated as a region for piloting IFNCs in the Digital Britain report, but Ten Alps and the Belfast Telegraph are planning a cross-platform rolling news service in Northern Ireland taking in news bulletins, press, localised websites and online TV coverage.

In a statement, Bob Geldof, non-executive director and co-founder of Ten Alps, said the exclusion of Northern Ireland from the pilots "was rare and frankly odd", adding that no explanation received from the government so far "makes sense - from lack of funds for the province, to lack of credible alternative news suppliers".

He added: "So we ask the Department for Culture, Media and Sport to give Belfast a tender process, and allow Northern Ireland to fully engage in a democratic process in the vitally important news sector."

 

Have your say...

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Media Week Jobs
Search for more media jobs

Latest

Waitrose boosts content strategy with 'Weekend Kitchen with Waitrose' C4 tie-up

Waitrose boosts content strategy with 'Weekend Kitchen with Waitrose' C4 tie-up

Waitrose has joined forces with Channel 4 and produced a Saturday morning lifestyle and cookery programme called 'Weekend Kitchen with Waitrose', with TV presenters Lisa Snowdon and Steve Jones signed up to front it.

Share
Newspaper ABCs: Guardian smashes through 100m browsers in March 2014

Newspaper ABCs: Guardian smashes through 100m browsers in March 2014

The Guardian reached more than 100 million monthly unique browsers for the first time in March, according to Audit Bureau of Circulations figures published today.

Share
Toyota achieves the impossible by calming angry Roman drivers

Toyota achieves the impossible by calming angry Roman drivers

Italians swearing and shouting while sitting behind the wheels of their cars and negotiating the busy streets of Rome could become a thing of the past if they all start driving Toyota's Hybrid vehicles, implies a short film for the car brand.

Share

Get news by email