BBC ultra-local TV to hire 300 journalists

The BBC hopes to recruit 300 video journalists across the UK if plans for ultra-local TV come into effect.

Speaking at a conference on the future of television, BBC controller of English regions Andy Griffee said: "If I get my way, the BBC will be recruiting 300 new video journalists across the UK. It's not just about being local; it's about being on demand."

He told the audience that when he started at the BBC it was worried about being local but that the current challenge was to shift the focus of the corporation's television news from covering big regions like the Midlands to news that was "as local as our radio stations".

Griffee said his aim was for the BBC to be first in covering stories and that already an increased level of investment had resulted in improved news coverage. It is unlikely that the local TV proposals currently under consideration by the BBC will be brought into effect before autumn 2007 and the BBC has said that it will take four years to set up all 66 services.

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