RTÉ regional studios saved by IT deal

Fri, Sep 21, 2012, 01:00

RTÉ’s five regional studios have been saved following an arrangement with local institutes of technology.

The existing studios in Waterford, Dundalk, Athlone, Galway and Sligo will close and be based in the institutes of technology.

All the regional correspondents will be retained and there will be no job losses.

It is hoped that the proposal will save €1 million a year. It means that RTÉ’s London offices will be the only ones to close as a result of the broadcaster’s drive to close a €25 million funding gapas RTÉ moves to break even by the end of next year.

The RTÉ decision avoids the potentially politically damaging effect of closing regional offices. A strong lobbying campaign, particularly in Waterford, also helped to stave off closure.

It is hoped that the partnership between the institutes of technology and RTÉ will be of mutual benefit with the move enhancing the ITs' multi-media capacity.

The move is part of the strategy outlined by RTÉ’s director-general Noel Curran to seek partnerships with other organisations.

GMIT president Dr Michael Carmody said the association with RTÉ will “add a new dimension to our Bachelor of Arts (Honour) in film and documentary programmes along with providing work experience and employment opportunities for our students and graduates”.

Over the next few weeks, joint working groups will be established between each IT and RTÉ to look at the range and potential of these new relationships.

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