Welsh Affairs Committee
English Language Television Broadcasting in Wales
HC 502, Eleventh Report of Session 2008-09 - Report, Together with Formal Minutes, Oral and Written Evidence
- House of Commons - Welsh Affairs Committee
- TSO (The Stationery Office)
This report, 'English Language Television Broadcasting in Wales (HC 502)', was prompted by a high degree of concern amongst Welsh MPs about the cuts being undertaken by ITV Wales, particularly in relation to news output and current affairs.
Because of the sustained drop in advertising revenue for television, it seems inevitable that there will be further cuts in output unless alternative finance can be made available. This has raised considerable concern about the potential lack of diversity in the provision of television news in English for an audience in Wales.
At present the BBC provides a wide range of news and current events programmes on radio and on television in English, complemented by television programming from S4C and radio broadcasting by BBC Radio Cymru for the Welsh speaking audience. But it seems probable that viewers will effectively have no choice in English language television news broadcasting in Wales from 2010, largely because of the financial difficulties facing ITV.
There is a deficit in the broadcasting of non-news television programmes for an English speaking audience in Wales. Again the BBC and S4C provide a range of quality programming for the 20% of the population who speak Welsh, but the outlook for locally-produced and locally-focussed programming other than that broadcast by the BBC is bleak for the 80% English speaking audience in Wales.
The Government must urgently consider the lack of specifically Welsh broadcasting services for English-speakers in Wales and identify ways to address the shortfall.
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