MPs enter Central studio closure row

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Resistance to the possible closure of ITV Central’s Nottingham studios gathered pace this week after journalists enlisted the support of 34 MPs.

Alan Meale, Labour MP for Mansfield, tabled an Early-Day Motion voicing “great concern” about recent speculation concerning moving ITV’s East Midlands operations to Birmingham. His move came as ITV admitted to a review of its production and studio bases, which the NUJ said could affect up to 200 ITV staff in Nottingham.

The initial 27 MPs that signed the motion on Monday were joined by a further seven by Wednesday.

The MPs feared such a move “would lead to a much more limited and inferior regional news and current affairs service” for viewers. It is also understood that some MPs have written to Ofcom.

NUJ national broadcasting organiser Paul McLaughlin said: “How can producers and presenters working and living more than 50 or 60 miles away give them a truly ‘local’ news service? “ITV has pledged that regional news and programmes will be at the heart of the newly merged company. Any moves to cut back studio operations in this way would clearly contradict that promise.”

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