BBC Newsline

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BBC Newsline
BBC Newsline.png
Presented by Donna Traynor
Tara Mills
Tina Campbell
Stephen Watson
Gavin Andrews
Theme music composer David Lowe
Country of origin Northern Ireland
Original language(s) English
Running time Main bulletin:
30 minutes;
Short bulletins:
Durations vary
Production company(s) BBC Northern Ireland
BBC News
Original network BBC One Northern Ireland
Picture format 576i (16:9 SDTV)
1080i (HDTV)
Original release 12 February 1996 (1996-02-12)[1] – present
External links

BBC Newsline is the BBC's regional television news service for Northern Ireland. The programme is broadcast on BBC One Northern Ireland from BBC Northern Ireland's headquarters in Broadcasting House, Ormeau Avenue, Belfast.

As well as being available via all multi-channel outlets in Northern Ireland (including via Sky channel 101), the programme can be accessed by the rest of the United Kingdom (along with all other regional BBC news programmes) on the BBC iPlayer, or alternatively on Sky channel 973. Viewers from the Republic of Ireland with a Sky subscription can also watch on Sky channel 141. As the BBC UK regional TV on satellite service is broadcast unencrypted, it is possible to receive BBC Newsline anywhere in Europe using an appropriate receiver.

Programme history[edit]

BBC Newsline is the most recent incarnation of BBC Northern Ireland's television news service, which began on Monday 30 September 1957 as part of the corporation's rollout of regional television services. The first five-minute bulletins, Today in Northern Ireland, were presented by Maurice Shillington and broadcast from a tiny radio studio within Broadcasting House in Belfast.

Up until the launch of Today in Northern Ireland, a networked topical magazine programme, Ulster Mirror, had been broadcast every fortnight since Friday 26 November 1954. The new daily bulletins were later expanded to ten minutes and supplemented by a magazine programme called Studio Eight, first broadcast on Friday 20 February 1959 with Robert Coulter as its presenter. Today in Northern Ireland was replaced on 17 September 1962 by a 20-minute programme initially known as Six O'Clock.[2] The new longer magazine programmes changed title to Six Five and Six Ten until Scene Around Six was introduced in January 1968.

Main presenters during the programme's history included Larry McCoubrey, Barry Cowan and Sean Rafferty. The launch of the national Six O'Clock News led to Scene Around Six being relaunched as Inside Ulster in September 1984. On Tuesday 7 May 1985, the programme was moved to an earlier timeslot of 5.35pm.

The current Newsline brand was introduced on 12 February 1996 when the main evening programme returned to a 6.30pm timeslot.[1] Although Noel Thompson[3][4] and Lynda Bryans[3] were the original choice of presenters, Thompson was later dropped causing Bryans to resign and move to UTV. The programme's first presenters were political editor Jim Dougal and reporter Yvette Shapiro.[1] Dougal was replaced as anchor by Conor Bradford after two months.[5] [6] Newsline also introduced teletext subtitles for deaf viewers upon its launch.[7]

Noel Thompson and Donna Traynor later became the programme's main presenting team until August 2012 when Thompson left to join BBC Radio Ulster. Newsline is now presented by a single main anchor with Traynor presenting three nights a week and Tara Mills anchoring two nights a week.[8]

Notable presenters and reporters[edit]

  • Donna Traynor
  • Tara Mills
  • Tina Campbell (newsreader)
  • Conor MacAuley
  • Mark Devenport (political editor)
  • Julian O'Neill (business correspondent)
  • Gavin Andrews
  • David Maxwell
  • Gordon Adair (Armagh district journalist)
  • John Campbell (business & economics editor)
  • Marie-Louise Connolly (health correspondent)
  • Claire Savage
  • Maggie Taggart (Education & Arts and Entertainment Correspondent)
  • Eunan McConville (South & East Antrim district journalist)
  • Julian Fowler (Fermanagh district journalist)
  • Keiron Tourish (north-west reporter)
  • Angie Phillips (weather)
  • Barra Best (weather + occasional newsreader)
  • Cecilia Daly (weather)
  • Geoff Maskell (weather)
  • Stephen Watson (sport)
  • Thomas Niblock (sport)
  • Gavin Andrews (Relief)

Previous notable presenters & reporters[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Belfast Telegraph: "BBC launches flagship to take on UTV Live", dated 13 February 1996; accessed 17 June 2008
  2. ^ Your Place & Mine - Scene Around Six,
  3. ^ a b Belfast Telegraph: "Present twists on Newsline's presentation", dated 6 May 1996; accessed 17 June 2008
  4. ^ Belfast Telegraph: "Beeb's Noel wins hearts and minds of Breakfast bosses"; dated 10 August 1998; accessed 17 June 2008
  5. ^ Belfast Telegraph: "TV faces flock to Kincora book launch", dated 23 April 1996; accessed 17 June 2008
  6. ^ Belfast Telegraph: "Present twists on Newsline's presentation"; dated 6 May 1996. Retrieved 17 June 2008
  7. ^ Belfast Telegraph: "Beeb planners tune in to the need for subtitles"; dated 22 January 1997; accessed 17 June 2008
  8. ^ Belfast Newsletter: "All Change on BBC Newsline"; dated 27 August 2012; accessed 28 August 2012

External links[edit]