Taxis drive 'Today' into a financial crisis
RADIO 4'S flagship
Today programme is spending so much money transporting people, including guests, to its new studio in White City that it could not afford to send reporters to East Timor or the earthquake in Turkey, BBC insiders said yesterday.
RADIO 4'S flagship Today programme is spending so much money transporting people, including guests, to its new studio in White City that it could not afford to send reporters to East Timor or the earthquake in Turkey, BBC insiders said yesterday.
The programme's total transport costs have doubled to nearly £180,000 since its staff and studios were moved out of Broadcasting House in central London to Television Centre at the farther flung White City last summer.
Taxis for guests arriving in the early hours now rarely clock up bills under £10 each - and the costs are affecting the programme's journalism, according to senior BBC sources.
A temporary edict has forbidden Today producers from commissioning any reports at all from foreign correspondents and stringers who are not already accounted for in the budgets.
Insiders on the programme complain of low morale due to the move to White City, and severe budgetary constraints. "The atmosphere in the studio is so different from the old days in Broadcasting House," said one insider. "So many politicians don't come in to do eyeball-to-eyeball interviews. Gordon Brown, for instance, used to come regularly to Broadcasting House, but I'm not sure he has ever made the journey out to White City."
BBC staff say they are hoping for more investment in the programme when Greg Dyke takes over as director general next April.
"Foreign coverage is undoubtedly being affected," said another. "The decisions about East Timor and the earthquake in Turkey are both examples."
Matt Smith is set to join cast of Jane Austen classic - with a twist
Olympic diver has made his modelling debut for Adidas
Thailand beach murders: Thai PM suggests 'attractive' female tourists cannot expect to be safe wearing bikinis
Scottish independence: Final opinion polls show undecided voters could swing result either way
Isis release 'Flames of War' video warning Obama of attacks troops could face in Iraq
Jennifer Lawrence 'naked sex video' will be leaked next, threatens 4Chan celebrity photo hacker
Hitler’s former food taster reveals the horrors of the Wolf’s Lair
- 2 Scottish independence: Learn from Quebec's mistakes and beware of promises. Vote Yes.
- 3 'Necrophilia-obsessed' girl among double murder accused in three-way sex case
- 4 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
£60000 - £85000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Interim Head of Marketing / Marketin...
£28000 per annum: Ashdown Group: IT Software Application Support Analyst - Imm...
£25 - 30k: Guru Careers: A Digital Project Manager is needed to join an exciti...
£24 - 28k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Paid Search Analyst / PPC...