News Two men and three teenage boys convicted at Old Bailey of 18 rapes and a string of other offences

Two men and three teenage boys convicted at Old Bailey of 18 rapes and a string of other offences

Right of Reply: Tony Hall

The Chief Executive of BBC News defends his plans to reform television news programmes

Letter: News viewers

Sir: Your Word on the Street (Media 22 September) couldn't have been more wrong about BBC News 24. More than 2 million homes can receive News 24 and it is being viewed in 44 per cent of those homes; it is also broadcast overnight on BBC1 to an average audience of 120,000. It may come as a shock that a public service broadcaster should have the nerve to invest in future viewer demands, but we are determined that BBC News will not be left behind in the digital revolution.

Cold Call: Sally Chatterton rings Martyn Lewis

THE GOOD news is that Martyn Lewis, the caring woman's anchorman, is not leaving his six o'clock slot. Reluctant to progress from a gentle chat about the news to questions about his P45 and a certain holiday programme presenter, I tested the water by asking him what he thought about Channel 5's "innovative" format and new-look presenter.

Why the Beeb rules the waves

Far from being strangled by red tape, writes John Simpson, the BBC's world affairs editor, Auntie has gone from old boys' network to cutting-edge corporation

Obituary: Roger Lazar

ROGER LAZAR was too self-effacing a character ever to project himself into the upper reaches of BBC News, writes Charles Wheeler [further to the obituary by Leonard Miall, 17 February]. The contributors to From Our Own Correspondent over the 13 years he ran it will remember him as one of the most successful programme editors of his generation - on a par with men like Laurence Gilliam and Andrew Boyle.

TV: today's pick

Children of Divorce (9.30pm BBC2) "To this day he thinks he walked out on her, but he walked out on me," says one of the children interviewed in this new series. It's this exclusion from the divorce process that producer/ director Hilary Clarke seeks to redress, hearing from young people aged between six and 22 whose parents have split up within the past two to 10 years. For some, the door slamming was the first they knew about it. Then there's the awful choice of which parent to live with, the teasing at school (one remembers his peers singing the old Middle of the Road chant "Where's your mama gone?", and the added responsibility which matures them beyond their years.

Culture: On the air: TV news most of us can't watch

The BBC last night broke Sky's monopoly in round-the-clock TV news when it launched News 24. Rob Brown, Media Editor, went to Television Centre to see the start of a service few licence-payers were able to share.

BBC ready for 24-hour news

BBC 24-hour television news was yesterday given the Government green light for a launch next month. The service will be seen first by 1.5 million viewers in five cable areas and on BBC1 overnight.

Jesus, the perfect anti-sleaze candidate

Nobody ever believes me when I tell them this, but I never switch on the news on television. Occasionally, I blunder into the news when looking for something else, and then leave immediately. I have not seen a complete news programme on TV for three or four years, although I did once stick with Channel 4 News for 10 minutes as it seemed a cut above any other news service I had ever seen. Not particularly good, just a lot better than BBC or ITV.

Not biased, just timid

David Walker fears for the BBC's general election coverage

cover lines

Sex sells. And sex between people who aren't supposed to be doing it sells even more. The News of the World's

Letters: Fight for World Service culture

Sir: The crunch will come for the BBC's World Service when someone, journalist or accountant, decides that BBC News and Current Affairs and the World Service do not need separate staffs in overseas bureaux, which currently share offices but not people.

BBC to launch first black TV news

The BBC's first news and current affairs programme specifically for black viewers goes on air next month.

BBC news faces cuts to finance digital TV

The BBC plans swingeing budget cuts of 30 per cent over five years in its news and current affairs operation, in order to finance the launch of digital TV services.

First woman editor of national TV news

Sara Nathan has been poached from BBC Radio to become the new editor of Channel 4 News, the influential weekday 7pm news and current affairs programme. She is the first woman to edit a national network television news service.
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