The Newsroom

BBC Breakfast - 16th July onwards

Split from BBC News (UK) presentation - Reith launch onwards

NG
noggin Founding member
The social distancing rules haven't changed - but the essential travel argument has gone away.

So if you can manage social distancing safely, you can bring more people back into the studio I guess.

GMB are in a much better position than Breakfast in this regard because their half of TC3 is a lot bigger than the Salford Breakfast studio (so camera operators can be further away from each other and you can spread presenters out more). Breakfast have less need for in-studio camera operators though, as unlike GMB, they have a number of remote cameras.
BR
Brekkie Wales Wales Today
The Salford location means that interviewing remotely has long been the norm for Breakfast anyway, especially with politicians, whilst Carol of course has never been based in the studio.

Certainly though the small studio limits guest options at the moment, though using the screens they can probably have both the business and sports presenter back in the studio - though in the case of the latter I think them remaining elsewhere in the Salford building still makes sense. I suspect Sally will be presenting alot more in the next few weeks anyway as holiday season kicks in.
Stay Local. Stay Safe. Stay Alive.
CW
Charlie Wells Moderator Anglia (West) Look East (West sub-opt)
The Salford location means that interviewing remotely has long been the norm for Breakfast anyway, especially with politicians, whilst Carol of course has never been based in the studio.

Being pedantic Carol has occasionally presented from the current Breakfast studio, though I suspect on those occasions she's been at Salford for reasons other that just presenting the weather.

If I recall correctly from Monday the local news returns to Breakfast, or at least for the nations (not entirely sure about the English regions).
"Listen, we've all got something to bring to this conversation, but from now on what I think you should bring is silence." - Rimmer
m_in_m and Custard56 gave kudos
SW
Steve Williams
Business presenter Sean Farrington was in the studio with Naga and Charlie this morning. Is this the first time they've had a third person in the studio (excluding behind the scenes crew) since the lockdown?


Sean was in the studio earlier in the week as well, though as you mention, this week was indeed the first time they had a third person. They're still taking it very slowly, though - as mentioned, Good Morning Britain has a bigger studio, though Breakfast benefits from also having a newsroom they can broadcast from, which Good Morning Britain doesn't.

Various programmes and broadcasters are seemingly being more cautious than others - in terms of sport, BT looks to have been the most cautious, despite the size of their main studio, in that they consistently use only one pundit in the studio (they had three the night Liverpool won the title, but only briefly and for the rest of the show they were in the green room) whereas the Beeb and Sky have most frequently used two. Seemingly it's partly for safety reasons and partly if they think the alternative would look a bit rubbish on screen.
SW
Steve Williams
Incidentally I quite like the quote from Dermot O'Leary in this piece about how Radio 2 has been broadcasting during lockdown - https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/4TKltFG9hXCttF7wm8lvdRX/broadcasting-on-radio-2-during-lockdown

Dermot was doing the breakfast show the week lockdown began, and as he says, on the first day Tina Dehealey and Richie Anderson were both in their usual places in the studio, then the next day they were much further apart, then the next day Tina wasn't in the studio at all, and the next day neither of them were in the studio.

It is quite an interesting question, when did you realise that this was quite a big thing? There was a column by Jonathan Liew in The Guardian the other week where he suggested that for quite a lot people that would have been when Fulham vs Brentford was cancelled on 13th March, the first football match to go not because anyone involved had the virus, but just because of general safety concerns, and I think that's quite an astute observation. And genuinely for me, it probably was when Dan and Louise started sitting further apart on Breakfast, it was the most obvious visual signifier that things were going a bit strange.
CM
cmthwtv West Country (East) Points West

It is quite an interesting question, when did you realise that this was quite a big thing? There was a column by Jonathan Liew in The Guardian the other week where he suggested that for quite a lot people that would have been when Fulham vs Brentford was cancelled on 13th March, the first football match to go not because anyone involved had the virus, but just because of general safety concerns, and I think that's quite an astute observation. And genuinely for me, it probably was when Dan and Louise started sitting further apart on Breakfast, it was the most obvious visual signifier that things were going a bit strange.


Going with my news-obsessive nature, it would have to be when I got home from work at around 16:25ish, whacked on the TV and BBC One, to see Huw Edwards welcoming me to a news special for the first of the daily briefings.

As that week progressed, there was a really sudden change in tone from the government over their handling. Monday was wash your hands, Tuesday was wash your hands and try not to go out too much, Wednesday was don't go to school or the pubs, and then by the next Monday 23 March we had the statement at 20:30 telling us to stay at home.

So for me, the media and government response is what alerted my of the severity. Ignorantly, throughout January, February and early March I never even dreamed of it coming to the UK. I remember lead stories of the first cases in the UK and they had a media frenzy around a couple of coaches carrying people.
JL
JamesLaverty1925 Central (East) East Midlands Today
I think there were a few different times.

One of the parents best friends works at the Ningbo Campus of University of Nottingham. He was back over in Britain for Christmas and January, and was advised not to return to China, and worked from Nottingham for the timebeing. This was more a case of it being serious, but not in the UK yet.

W/B 2nd March, I was on two separate work trips to Sheffield and Leeds respectively. In Sheffield, I was in a taxi, with the driver telling me his planned trip to China in June was cancelled. A few days later in Leeds, I noticed all the screens had both universities had the news channel on big screens, as opposed to the usual adverts for the Uni. It was while I was in Leeds, the first Co-Vid related death in the UK happened.

Then about a fortnight later, I was identified as "high at risk" by my employer and advised to start working from home. It was while at home I noticed the presentation was changing nearly every day. Presenters being further apart, double headed programmes becoming solo etc.
RN
Rolling News Central (East) East Midlands Today
For me, it was the afternoon of Thursday 12th March when BBC One joined the News Channel for the first government daily briefing presented by a serious looking Simon McCoy. I think it was that point onwards when I first realised how serious this was, and for lots of other people too as I presume, as I think it was from the following morning when everyone started 'panic buying'.

Then of course in the following days you had presenters on daily shows sitting further and further apart, Bbc news channel replacing all of its strands with "BBC News", shops closing (including the one I work in meaning i would be furloughed and at home for 3 months), television productions being suspended, pubs bars restaurants cinemas etc closing. I too would never have dreamt of all this even 5 months ago.
Stay alert. Control the virus. Save lives.
BC
Blake Connolly Founding member London London
It is quite an interesting question, when did you realise that this was quite a big thing? There was a column by Jonathan Liew in The Guardian the other week where he suggested that for quite a lot people that would have been when Fulham vs Brentford was cancelled on 13th March, the first football match to go not because anyone involved had the virus, but just because of general safety concerns, and I think that's quite an astute observation. And genuinely for me, it probably was when Dan and Louise started sitting further apart on Breakfast, it was the most obvious visual signifier that things were going a bit strange.


March 13th for me definitely, has to be the busiest day I've ever had at work while not actually having any live programmes.

It was like a drip-drip of leagues cancelling all their fixtures one after the other through the afternoon. As soon as one cancelled live event for that evening had been replaced by something else in the schedule and everything looked like it had finally settled down, the announcement came through that the replacement had now also been cancelled and the schedules were thrown up in the air again. And of course before long before the replacement for the replacement would also be gone. I won't say how close I came to having nothing at all to go to air at one point...
NE
News96 Look North (Yorkshire)
It was definitely for me around Tuesday 10th when i could feel things starting to kick off as the hand washing advise was absolutely being pushed but then it was from about the evening of Monday 16th when the order went out to avoid offices, pubs and travelling that things started escalating and i could feel that a lockdown was coming, especially when the TV Productions started being suspended from Tuesday 17th, The School's closing announcements on Wednesday 18th and the pubs, restaurants and gyms being ordered to shut on Friday 20th.

In fact it was Reeta Chakrabarti's opening line on the 6/10 on that Friday evening when she said "The Coronavirus Crisis is changing life as we know it" that i started to think something was about to happen then we all know what happened 3 days after this.
Last edited by News96 on 25 July 2020 11:27pm - 2 times in total
AN
Andrew Founding member Yorkshire Look North (Yorkshire)
I remember w/c 9th March it was still taken very casually and wasn't thought to be that too big a deal, at work we would have to ask suppliers if they'd been to China or northern Italy, but it was all done it quite a jokey manner. We heard from suppliers that there was much more panic and action at firms in London, but up North we take things in a much more measured manner.

Then by w/c 16th March, it went so fast, they'd installed sanitiser around the office and the plan was there would be a trial work from home day and it would happen with no notice (as at that stage it would be if someone had symptoms being the reason why the office would close). But as it happens, the government announced working from home on the 16th March, and from the 18th March we started to do so for at least 3 weeks. Of course it was more than 3 weeks, and it is now planned to be for at least 24 weeks, although 'work from home if you can' has no timetable attached to it by the government, so who knows.

From a TV perspective, the way Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway panned out across the series sums it up, from what they had planned in week 1 for episode 7, and what episode 7 actually turned out like. Imagine if that had been predicted
BH
BillyH Founding member London London
I had planned a massive trip around Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan throughout much of March, booking most of the month off from work as holiday. I work in a major London venue and my last shift was on the 11th March, and it was noticeable that while we were officially at full capacity many seats were instead empty due to many cancelling or simply not turning up. Even then I admittedly dismissed it as a bit of an overreaction, nothing would close and we’ll have forgotten it all by April. I remember finishing the shift and saying I’d see everyone in a few weeks.

I ended up stuck in Budapest for a week as my flight to Kazakhstan got cancelled while I was in transit there, followed in the next day or two by every single country I’d planned to visit all closing their borders - I was lucky to even be able to enter Hungary, particularly given a recent visit to Lebanon I was questioned about! On the 17th, as I’m sitting by the Danube, my phone starts buzzing from work colleagues that the place has closed until further notice, which was the moment I realised this wasn’t going away any time soon and should probably find a way back home as soon as possible - by now Hungary was officially closed to everyone but I could still leave the country on one of the ever-diminishing list of flights still operating, and the hotels were slowly shutting down by the day.

Finally found a flight back to Edinburgh (about 15 passengers full) and, after a very long train journey, returned to London on the night lockdown was announced. Work hasn’t been open since (maybe reopening in a limited form at the end of this year) but luckily it looks like my position is safe there unlike some venues.
Member since 26 May 2001

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