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Last Updated: Tuesday, 8 November 2005, 17:17 GMT
BBC to revamp TV news operation
BBC News 24
News 24 is the BBC's continuous news channel
The BBC is to boost rolling news channel News 24 while streamlining its main BBC One bulletins, its head of television news has announced.

A controller of News 24 will be appointed, while a single daytime news editor will replace individual editors of the One and Six O'Clock News.

A merged pool of staff will make the One, Six and 10 O'Clock News bulletins.

"We need to be in good shape to embrace new technologies and new audience needs," said the BBC's Peter Horrocks.

The BBC aims to share its edited news material more widely among its bulletins and News 24, to ensure stories are broadcast as quickly as possible.

BBC head of television news Peter Horrocks
We need to put continuous news at the heart of our operations
Peter Horrocks

The corporation wanted to create a more "streamlined, flexible and dynamic" news operation across its TV news services, a press release said.

Staff will work on a single rota for the One, Six and Ten O'Clock News, although some dedicated effort for each programme will be kept.

Each of the main bulletins will have its own dedicated newsreader, as before.

However, viewers would see more breaking stories and more of the BBC's correspondents on its rolling news outlet.

The BBC said there would be no further staff job losses, although one senior post would be lost with the merger of the editorship of the One and Six O'Clock News.

"BBC television news has been performing very strongly, across all of its services. We have access to the finest news content in the world," said Mr Horrocks.

"We need to put continuous news at the heart of our operations."

Sky News relaunch

The BBC launched its rolling news channel News 24 in 1997.

Over the past year it has attracted an extra one million viewers, rising from 4.5 million to 5.5 million.

Rival news channel Sky News relaunched last month, breaking up its rolling news service into dedicated programmes hosted from a larger studio.

The BBC quotes official Barb figures saying Sky News has since lost 300,000 viewers a week and that News 24 has gained 200,000.

But a Sky News spokesman said it was still "early days" and that the channel would "continue to polish and improve its output in the months ahead".

The BBC's daily One O'Clock News bulletin attracts a daily average of 2.7 million viewers.

An average of 4.3 million watch the Six O'Clock News, while 4.7 million watch the 10 O'Clock News.

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