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2000
Not the Nine O'Clock News
"This is the BBC Nine O'Clock News - at Ten O'Clock."

After 30 years in the Nine pm slot, BBC One's main bulletin of the day shifted back by one hour on 16 October 2000.

BBC chairman Sir Christopher Bland said ten was "a better time for news". The move was "in the best interests of viewers". Critics pointed out that the BBC was getting in first ahead of ITN - which was soon to return, several nights a week, to the slot it had once made its own with News At Ten.

All three main political parties weighed in. Culture Secretary Chris Smith said there was a danger of driving down the quality of BBC News. The move was "clearly a betrayal of public service values," said ITV. The National Consumer Council accused the BBC of reducing viewer choice. Sir Christopher said the Corporation was offering "absolute clarity in the scheduling of news, six nights a week".

A year later, the BBC was pulling ahead of the opposition. Director of News Richard Sambrook said it was proof that UK viewers valued the Ten O'Clock's "comprehensive and authoritative round-up of foreign, domestic and political news".

The BBC Ten O'Clock bulletin is now presented by Huw Edwards from Mondays to Thursdays. Fiona Bruce takes over on Fridays - and often at weekends. In October 2003, it was announced that ITN would be moving to a new regular spot - at half past ten.


Michael Buerk presenting the Ten O'Clock News
 
 

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