More than 1,000 BBC staff made redundant last year

More than one thousand BBC staff were made redundant last year.

The total redundancies rocketed to 1,230 in 2011 compared with 444 in 2010 and 438 in 2009.

The BBC started transferring programming in 2011 to the new MediaCity complex in Salford Quays.

The site, which cost £650 million to build, now houses BBC Breakfast, Match of the Day, Newsround, Blue Peter and Five Live.

Many employees appear to have opted to receive a leaving package rather than relocate from London.

NUJ general secretary Michelle Stanistreet said: ‘These figures lay bare the shocking situation at the BBC. Losing 1,230 jobs through redundancy in 2011 has had a real impact on the working conditions of those left.”

The figures obtained via Freedom of Information cover all national and regional staff.

The BBC said the departures were part of ‘overall efficiency savings”.

Meanwhile, there were 3,303 joiners of the BBC staff in 2011 – but the vast majority were on fixed-term contracts. Only 490 recruits to the BBC were on continuing contracts, 2,976 were recruited for fixed-term periods and 17 were locals recruited by the BBC abroad.

It has emerged the overall BBC staff headcount reduced from 19,579 in 2003 to 16,858 this year. In total since 2004 more than 6,000 have been made redundant.

Last year the BBC produced a Delivering Quality First (DQF) cost-cutting plan to make further savings of 20 per cent by 2017 with another 2,000 jobs set to be axed.

The NUJ general secretary warned the DQF plan could have a negative impact.

She said: ‘We are calling on George Entwistle, the new director general, to establish a new plan for the future of the BBC to ensure quality public service broadcasting is protected.

“Investigative journalism will be hit and political coverage will be cut. The BBC plans to halve its spending on party conferences. Asian Network will be cut by half and arts and drama coverage will be reduced.

“And there is a knock on effect as research commissioned by the Federation of Entertainment Unions showed that the cuts outlined in DQF are likely to lead to a reduction in UK economic output of between £1.1 and £1.7 billion pounds per year at 2011 prices in the creative sector.”

Despite the sharp rise in redundancies last year, BBC recruitment remained steady with joiners on fixed term or permanent contracts remaining at around 3,000 overall in each of the last three years.

A BBC spokesman said: ‘As a global broadcaster, we will always need to recruit staff to deliver our services, and ensure we have the right balance of skills in our workforce to meet the changing needs of the digital era, and to replace those who leave the organisation.”

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