McCormick 'would have resigned'

BBC Scotland’s departing controller, John McCormick, has revealed that he would have resigned if the board of governors had not backed his stance in refusing to hand over the controversial Holyrood tapes.

McCormick said that to have “meekly surrendered” the tapes to the Fraser inquiry into the £350m overspend on the new Scottish Parliament could have had far-reaching repercussions for BBC journalists worldwide.

McCormick, who retires on 2 April, told The Herald that BBC Scotland was under enormous pressure to hand over the 200 hours of tapes made for The Gathering Place – a documentary commissioned by the BBC and produced by Wark Clements.

“Had the governors not supported BBC Scotland…I would most certainly have resigned. I was ready for it mentally. Granted, it was close to my retirement, but if it had been five years ago, I would have done it,” he said.

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