Partial jobs cut reprieve for BBC Scotland’s Inverness office

THE Inverness office of BBC Scotland has been given a partial jobs cut reprieve after it was revealed that two high-profile planned redundancies have been reduced to one.

There was protest among local MSPs and businesses when it was announced that – as part of plans to make 35 posts redundant across the whole of BBC Scotland – two out of four (English language) senior broadcast posts in Inverness had been earmarked for redundancy.

But there has been a change in plan.

A spokesperson told “As an organisation that has an ongoing dialogue with our staff, we’ve been talking through our efficiency plans with staff and unions as part of the consultation process.

“Following those talks – and the offer of a voluntary redundancy in another part of the news operation – we have been able to reduce our news post closures in Inverness from two to one. That process will begin next week.”

In August, it was announced that 35 editorial posts at BBC Scotland had been earmarked for redundancy as part of an ongoing programme to implement a 16 per cent budget cut following an agreement two years ago between the BBC and the Westminster government to freeze the TV licence fee for six years.

The 35 posts comprised, in detail, eight from radio, two from Gaelic, 17 from news and current affairs, six from marketing, communications and audiences and two from New Media, learning and outreach.

Almost a fortnight ago, MSPs representing the Highlands and Islands sent a letter to BBC Scotland director, Ken MacQuarrie, saying they agreed with those claiming the area was being hit harder than the rest of the country.

A month ago, the Inverness Chamber of Commerce had been similarly critical of the plan.