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ITV News Border.png
Also known as ITV News Border
Presented by Ian Payne
Pam Royle
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
Executive producer(s) Michaela Byrne
(Head of News and Programmes)
Producer(s) ITV Tyne Tees & Border
Production location(s) The Watermark,
Gateshead, Tyne and Wear, England[1]
Editor(s) Catherine Houlihan
Camera setup Multi-camera
Running time 30 minutes
(main 18:00 show)
Original network ITV Border
Picture format 576i (SDTV 16:9)
Original release 1961 (1961) – present
Related shows Border Life
Representing Border
External links

Lookaround (branded on-screen as ITV News Lookaround) is a regional television news and current affairs programme, produced by ITV Tyne Tees & Border from its studios in Gateshead, and serving central and northern Cumbria, Dumfries and Galloway, parts of South Ayrshire, the Scottish Borders and overlap areas of Northumberland.


1961 – 2009[edit]

ITV Border's regional news service began on 1 September 1961 from studios at Harraby, Carlisle. Initially producing short evening bulletins and a topical magazine programme called Focus, Lookaround would become the station's flagship daily programme later on in the decade. Shorter bulletins were known as Border News. Meanwhile, the ITV Tyne Tees region had its own wholly separate news services. Lookaround is also known locally in Cumbrian dialect as "Border Crack an' Deekabout"[2]

In 1989, Border began providing a sub-regional news service for viewers served by the Selkirk transmitter, consisting of a short opt-out during Lookaround each weeknight. In April 1999, the opt-out was extended to cover Dumfries and Galloway and a dedicated Scottish news bulletin was introduced on weekday lunchtimes. Border also opened an Edinburgh bureau to provide coverage of the Scottish Parliament.[3]

2009 – 2013[edit]

Proposed merger with ITV Tyne Tees[edit]

In September 2007, ITV plc announced that ITV Border news operations would be merged with ITV Tyne Tees, subject to the approval from the regulator Ofcom.[4]

On 24 April 2008, a campaign to save the ITV Border news operation arrived in London with a petition of 9000 signed by viewers. This was ahead of MPs meeting with industry regulator Ofcom.[5]

Ofcom authorises ITV's plans[edit]

On 26 September 2008, Ofcom authorised ITV's plans to save £40m a year by making regional programming cutbacks. These include axing mid-morning bulletins on weekdays and lunchtime bulletins at weekends, plus merging a number of regions and halving the number of non-news regional programmes.

On 30 September 2008, it was announced the number of ITV Border employees would be slashed from 64 to 13.[6][7]

Following a survey of Isle of Man viewers in autumn 2008,[8] coverage of the Isle of Man was transferred from ITV Border to ITV Granada in July 2009.[9][10][11]

Lookaround begins transmitting from Gateshead[edit]

Lookaround retains an office in Carlisle where the news editor, planning and online teams are based along with correspondents, but as of February 2009, the programme is transmitted from ITV Tyne Tees' studios at The Watermark, Gateshead. The main anchors were announced as Ian Payne and Pam Royle.[12] As part of the merger, six district reporters were appointed - working from home unless based in Carlisle or Edinburgh. The district reporters announced were Victoria Hoe in Kendal, Hannah Lomas in Carlisle, Lee Madan in Selkirk, Stuart Pollitt in Whitehaven, Olivia Richwald in Dumfries and Kathryn Samson in Edinburgh.[12]

ITV Tyne Tees & Border was formed on 25 February 2009, with Lookaround and North East Tonight titles retained for the 6pm programme and late bulletin each weekday, whilst shorter bulletins were known simply as Tyne Tees & Border News.[13][14]

The then remaining sub-regional elements were:

  • The opening 15 minutes of the main 6pm programme.
  • Full late night bulletins on weeknights, following ITV News at Ten.
  • Localised weather forecasts.

On 14 January 2013, the news service was relaunched and rebranded as ITV News Lookaround.

2013 – present[edit]

Southern Scotland coverage reviewed[edit]

On 23 May 2012, ITV announced proposals for further changes on its regional news programming, with "some content replaced with aggregate of news from several regions" and an expansion in sub-regional coverage.[15] In November, upon the renewal of ITV's licences for a further ten years, Culture Secretary Maria Millar asked Ofcom to look into proposals for the Border region which would leave Southern Scotland viewers without "the same level of Scottish programming as viewers elsewhere in the country", covered by STV.[16]

In a consultation document, Ofcom set out two potential options, with any changes coming into effect in 2015 at the latest.[17][18] ITV proposed re-introducing a full news service exclusively for the Border region, including the return of half-hour editions of Lookaround and short news bulletins, as well as introducing a weekly current affairs programme for the region. The second option was to enforce ITV Border to broadcast 90 minutes a week of non-news programming, including programming from STV.

Press reports indicated a political split in opinion on the issue. In April, the Borders Chamber and members of the local authority at Newton[19] and the Scottish Borders Chamber of Commerce[20] publicly supported the second option - with the Chamber calling for a national ITV service for the whole of Scotland.

Two members of the UK Government - Scottish Secretary of State Michael Moore and deputy David Mundell (both MPs in the Border region) - backed ITV's proposal for a Border current affairs programme while the Scottish Government called for STV programming (including Scotland Tonight) to be simulcast.[21]

On 16 May 2013, the first televised Scottish independence debate was broadcast on STV's Scotland Tonight across northern and central Scotland, however viewers in the south of the country were unable to see it as ITV Border took the decision not to broadcast it, leading to further criticism from politicians in the region.[22] Michael Jermey, ITV Director of News and Current Affairs, pledged some programming from STV would air on ITV Border.[23]

On 23 July 2013, OFCOM announced it had approved the second option of Scottish non-news programming. The regulator also ordered ITV to reopen the former Border Scotland service previously utilized for split news bulletins and simulcasts of select STV programming. The opt-out service was launched on Freeview in January 2014 and consists of a thrice-weekly political programme, Representing Border, and a weekly feature series, Border Life.[24] The bespoke local programming is not seen in Cumbria, where network programming continues to air.

Lookaround fully restored[edit]

On 14 June 2013, it was reported Lookaround would be restored to a full 30-minute programme along with ITV recruiting journalists for an Autumn launch.[25]

A month later, Ofcom approved ITV's plans to restore Border's news service. All short bulletins - including daytime and weekend updates - are now exclusive to the Border region, however with the minutage decreased.[26] The changes came into effect on 16 September 2013.[27]

ITV Tyne Tees & Border continues to broadcast from the Gateshead studios - as such, both regional services utilise exactly the same presenter(s) and studio/set, therefore one of the two programmes - depending on the day's news - is pre-recorded 'as live' around an hour before broadcast.[28] The head of ITV Border's news and regional programmes is Michaela Byrne, based in Gateshead, with Catherine Houlihan as managing editor, based at Border's Carlisle offices.

Broadcast times[edit]

Lookaround airs each weeknight at 6pm with ITV News Border bulletins seven days a week.

Current notable on air team[edit]

Lookaround lead presenters
Good Morning Border opts newsreader
  • Rachel Sweeney
ITV Weather presenters
News correspondents

Former notable on air team[edit]

Listing former presenters/reporters for Lookaround and their subsequent employers.


  1. ^ Tyne Tees move to Watermark Gateshead Government
  2. ^ The GonMad Cumbrian Dictionary 
  3. ^ Memorandum submitted by Border Television Limited, parliament.uk, 23 November 2001
  4. ^ "ITV to merge regional newsrooms". BBC News. 12 September 2007. Retrieved 2007-09-12. 
  5. ^ Border TV comes to London BECTU, 24 April 2008
  6. ^ Fifty one jobs to be axed at Border TV Cumbria Life, 30 September 2008
  7. ^ Fight for 429 jobs – and for ITV regional news The Journalist
  8. ^ Response to Ofcom’s Second Public Service Broadcasting Review Phase Two: Preparing for the digital future Archived 16 June 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  9. ^ Viewers want to receive Granada TV news Archived 22 May 2010 at the Wayback Machine., iomtoday.co.im, 5 December 2008
  10. ^ Island set for Granada services, news.bbc.co.uk, 21 January 2009
  11. ^ Isle of Man moves ITV news region Archived 2 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine., www.iomtoday.co.im, 21 January 2009
  12. ^ a b Full Border TV Lookaround line-up revealed Archived 19 January 2009 at the Wayback Machine., News & Star, 17 January 2009
  13. ^ ITV reveals the faces of Lookaround re-design Eskdale & Liddesdale Advertiser, 21 January 2009
  14. ^ "Revamped Lookaround set for broadcast on February 25" Archived 11 February 2012 at the Wayback Machine. News & Star, 7 February 2009
  15. ^ ITV proposes cutting back on regional news content Mark Sweney, The Guardian, 23 May 2012
  16. ^ ITV and Channel 5 'may have to increase programming commitments' John Plunkett, The Guardian, 21 November 2012
  17. ^ Ofcom sets out Borders TV options Jamie Mclvor, BBC News, 21 February 2013
  18. ^ Views being sought on news and current affairs coverage in the Scottish Borders All Media Scotland, 21 February 2013
  19. ^ Scottish Borders Council leader already tunes into STV Peeblesshire News, 29 April 2013
  20. ^ Borders Chamber demands all-Scotland ITV Service Border Telegraph, 30 April 2013
  21. ^ Political split over south of Scotland ITV services Jamie McIvor, BBC News, 15 July 2013
  22. ^ 'We're left Indy dark' Magdalene Dalziel, Dumfries & Galloway Standard, 17 May 2013
  23. ^ ITV gives independence debate coverage pledge DnG24, 17 May 2013
  24. ^ OFCOM sets out licence terms for ITV, STV, UTV and Channel 5 Archived 26 July 2013 at the Wayback Machine., OFCOM, 23 July 2013
  25. ^ Border to restore full Lookaround TV news bulletin Archived 12 November 2013 at the Wayback Machine. James Johnson, News & Star, 14 June 2013
  26. ^ Ofcom announces plans for ITV service overhaul in southern Scotland BBC News, 23 July 2013
  27. ^ Ofcom announce changes for ITV's coverage in Cumbria and southern Scotland ITV News, 23 July 2013
  28. ^ Seventeen regions into nine: How the updated ITV local news services will run Caitlin Fitzsimmons, The Guardian, 17 February 2009
  29. ^ a b Tyne Tees news presenters axed in cost cuts Archived 6 December 2008 at the Wayback Machine., ChronicleLive, 3 December 2008
  30. ^ ITV Border: Meet the team, itv.com, 12 December 2013

External links[edit]

Preceded by
RTS: Television Journalism
Nations and Regions News Programme
(The Cumbria Shootings – Day 1)

Succeeded by
ITV News Calendar