It’s always a bit weird when you’re thrown into somewhere new just for the day; it’s hard to prove your worth and make an impression in such a limited space of time and you’re unable to take on any meaty, long term projects. Thus, I must admit, it was with a certain amount of apprehension that I turned up to work with Live at Five for the day. Well, and the fact that Sara may or may not have convinced me to drink a lot of gin based substances last night. As it happens though, Live at Five is very much a “we’ll sort it on the day programme”, depending on the news agenda and how it changes, meaning that I could get stuck into phone bashing just as much as everyone else.
Here’s just some of the fun I’ve been having outside of work… I would give you work related photos but seeing as I’ve smashed my phone up I can’t take any, so this will have to do.
My first tasks of the day involved locating a family in either Bristol or Bath who’d be willing to talk about their soaring energy costs, whilst simultaneously hunting down a foreign businessperson who’d decided to set up a new tech company in the UK, but outside London, and is able to talk about the impact of the Olympics. Now, I’d like you to take a good long look at both of those different criteria. Standard family. Foreign businessman with more weird prerequisites than you can write on the back of a shopping receipt. Now which of those do you think would be hard to find and which of them should be as easy as most of the population of Medway? (I’m aware the more astute amongst you know exactly where this is going).
Three phone calls later a lovely man from Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce is able to get me in contact with a Canadian businessman who’s happy to talk. He set up his techy business in Reading about a year ago and not only is he willing to talk about the impact of the Olympics this time round, his business was in Vancouver when they had the Olympics there. What seems like fifty million calls and emails later, neither me or my colleague have managed to find anyone in Bristol or Bath who’s willing to talk. I’ve signed up to so many “single parents” forums in my scouring of the towns if anyone now looks at my email inbox they’ll most certainly think I’ve got something to hide… Nonetheless our poor reporter on the scene struggles on and accosts a selection of families innocently trying to complete their daily shopping that they really do want to give a vox pop to Sky News on an issue they’re not too sure on.
Sky News continues to surprise me every day, and even though I’ve mentioned it before, I can’t get over just how normal and friendly the place is; in the Live at Five meetings it would be fair to say there was almost as much banter as if you threw Chris Morris in a room with a load of Christians. Another thing which I hadn’t quite expected today, was quite how last minute everything can be, having only ever seen the polished output from the comfort of my front room. When you’re sat in an editing suite, to finish a mere 30 seconds before live broadcast it feels like a completely story. So much get’s “biffed” at the last minute, connections fail and it goes tits-up so much more than you’d ever guess at from watching at home; the professionalism and resourcefulness of the team really is quite astounding – if I can stay that calm in the face of a world war by the end of my three years I’d really feel like I’d achieved something.
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