Cameraman based in Edinburgh, employed by ITN, working for ITV's Good Morning Britain covering stories all over the UK and the world. War Zones, World Cups, Royal Tours and many other less exciting assignments, like interviewing current and ex Prime Ministers have kept me busy over the years working in Breakfast Television since GMTV came on the scene back in '93 and regional TV before that. In 2009 I began to record what it is like to work, the often strange and long hours needed to bring the hard news, human interest and fluffy fun to the UK's TV screens in the morning, mostly broadcasting live.

Saturday, 29 October 2011

News at Ten, in the morning?

Saturday 29th

For the first time on this trip I was in a real deep sleep when the iPhone alarm rang and rang to rouse me.

It was kind of business as usual for me getting up at half past three to get ready to do a breakfast TV live broadcast, only this time it was going to be a live broadcast for News at Ten.

It felt rather weird indeed.

I threw on some clothes, picked up the minimum kit that I would need to do the broadcast and deal with any little mishaps that might jeopardise it. It was a weary walk to the Media Centre.

The Media Centre empty at 4 am.

At the live points outside the main entrance I set up my kit and checked that it all worked.

Kevin, the Globecast engineer who had moved out from the UK three years ago made sure that the important things were sorted, like showing me where I could get a cup of coffee.

Never mind the pictures and sound where's the coffee?

The Police are the only others in the building.

Shortly before News at Ten went on air everything was looking good. My pictures and sound were getting to ITN MCR in London and I was receiving their programme sound.

All systems go.

Tom and Sam arrived with a few moments to spare before we hit air.

He stuck his earpiece in and I clipped the talk back on. Then on went the lapel mic.

Tom Bradby checking his e-mails just before we went on air.

The studio in London spoke to Tom and we set the voice level.

Sam was listening in to gallery and relayed timings to us.

Tom’s report played, he took his cue and off he went.

Job done.

Tom and Sam left.

I derigged my kit and went back to the hotel to get a quick shower before heading off to see the Prime Ministers of the UK and Australia.

I was about to get ready for my shower when my phone rang.

It was Kate from the Prime MInister’s office. I had been given the wrong time for the departure. It was 6 am not 6:30 am and it was now just after 6.

That’ll be no shower then I thought.

I picked up the gear and headed down to meet the little group that would be going to the Pan Pacific hotel where the PM and Co were staying.

The car to take us to the Pan Pacific hotel....

There's always a bit of a walk when the roads are closed. Even in an accredited vehicle.

We were there in plenty of time so once we had been security screened it was time for a very good breakfast. What made it better was that it was not too much of a rush.

The room where the meeting would be held.

We went up to the room where the bilateral meeting was gong to be held and having once again been bibbed up we waited for the pair to arrive.

In they came, shook hands, sat down and started a bit of small talk.

That was it. We were ushered out by all the officials.

The first wait.

There was then a bit of hanging around before we were ushered back in to hear the pair make a bit of an announcement.

Mark, the soundman that had travelled with the PM would provide me with a sound feed.

The second wait.

When we went in we did not get as far forwards as we would have liked .before the pair started off with their little bits of chat.

The crux of what they said was that agreement had been reached to try to eradicate Polio in the few countries where it still existed.

Mark was not able to get his boom in as far as we would have liked so the levels were a bit low but, at least they were audible.

Once again it was a little bus ride. At the media centre I sent the short amount of footage to ITN to distribute to the BBC and Sky in London.

Then to allow Chris to get a chance to get out and see a bit of Australia I said that I would monitor the various feeds and record anything that might make a story.

Monitoring the feeds.

The big news that broke was something that could affect quite a few of us and had already affected William Hague the Foreign Secretary who was due to be on at least one Quantas flight on his visit here.

Breaking new on the screens in the Media Centre.

Quantas had grounded all its flights both domestic and international because of an industrial dispute that had been rumbling on for a while.

So what will happen to those of us on Quantas flights out of here in the next few days?

I was not able to get in touch with the travel people looking after my booking to investigate alternative flights.

Quantas is sponsoring the Daybreak Down Under job that I will be doing in a few days time. Will that be affected? Will one hundred Daybreak viewers still make it out here?

Big News indeed.

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