Local Borders TV news service set to return

A DEDICATED Borders news service could return to Teri TV screens, following concerns over the lack of local items being aired at the moment.

Regional news bulletins have been broadcast from Gateshead, near Newcastle, since 2009, but research carried out by Ofcom, the independent communications regulator, has indicated that viewers
would prefer to receive local content.

And the watchdog is currently considering two potential options to improve the future of local television provision in the Borders.

The first includes a weekly current affairs programme dedicated to the area, while the second would see the screening of 90 minutes of regional programming from STV.

Both proposals include restoring a local news service, similar to before the Tyne-Tees merger.

John Lamont MSP told the Hawick News: “I am delighted that both proposals put forward by Ofcom will include a dedicated Borders news service, and the return of the ITV Border region.

“When it was first merged with the Tyne Tees region several years ago, many residents in Hawick complained about losing out on having a local news service.

“I am glad that these voices have been listened to and that we will now see a daily news report that is tailored to our area.”

The Tory member added: “I am also hugely supportive of the possibility of a further half-hour current affairs programme that focuses on the issues and concerns that are relevant to those living in Hawick.”

Lib Dem Michael Moore MP agreed: “I welcome the proposals which outline ways in which the ITV news service in the Borders could be improved to serve the needs of local people more appropriately.

“Personally, I support a return to the previous service based at Border itself, to ensure our area continues to receive the local news people want.

“A locally-produced and focused service is exactly what we need.”