Hundreds attend NUJ public meeting on Save BBC Radio Foyle campaign

  • 04 Jan 2023

NUJ members and local people gathered at the Guildhall in Derry to voice opposition to BBC cuts at Radio Foyle.

The public meeting was organised by the NUJ's Derry and North West branch amid widespread concern from NUJ members, local communities, businesses and political parties, about BBC proposals announced late last year to cut jobs and programmes at Radio Foyle.

Plans will mean an end to the Radio Foyle Breakfast Show at the valued station broadcasting to audiences for over forty years. Daily news bulletins for the North West of Northern Ireland will be culled, with 36 jobs being cut across the whole of BBC Northern Ireland

Séamus Dooley, NUJ assistant general secretary, thanked members of Derry City and Strabane District Council for granting the union use of the Guildhall for this “incredibly significant meeting.”

Addressing Mayor Duffy, he said:

“Thank you for your leadership and for your strong endorsement of our campaign to save BBC Radio Foyle.”

On the importance of the meeting, Dooley said:

“BBC Radio Foyle matters because community matters and tonight you join with us as a community rejecting an ill-conceived, half-baked plan which threatens to undermine the essence of the station, it’s locally based news service and the morning platform which shapes the day of so many listeners. And for a paltry sum.”

Pierre Vicary, NUJ president, addressed the packed Guildhall, emphasising the importance of public service broadcasting and the need to defend it. Vicary said "this is a fight worth fighting, and a fight we have to win."

Union chapel reps will offer alternative proposals to the broadcaster next week.

Urging a “rethink of BBC’s Foyle Folly” he called for genuine engagement with the NUJ and the community, on a “re-imagining of the future of BBC Radio Foyle.”

Find out more about the NUJ’s Save BBC Radio Foyle campaign. Our petition has amassed over 1700 signatures and is still available to sign.

NUJ public meeting in Derry


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