Victoria Derbyshire issued a rallying cry in the wake of her award-winning BBC show’s shock cancellation, telling viewers: ‘We are still here, we won’t give up.’
Mrs Derbyshire, who is one of the broadcaster’s highest earners pocketing around £215,000-a-year, opened Thursday’s programme by insisting: ‘We are still here telling your stories and covering the issues that are important to you in your life.
‘And do you know what? We don’t give up.’
The daytime TV show’s cancellation was revealed by BBC Media Editor Amol Rajan yesterday who cited soaring costs as a reason for the broadcaster wielding the axe.
Despite pulling in an average of just 250,000 viewers, the show has won praise for tackling a wide range of important issues including the Windrush scandal, knife crime, facial recognition technology, domestic abuse and home-grown terrorism.
Mrs Derbyshire also won an army of fans documenting her breast cancer treatment and remission in a series of frank pieces highlighting her difficult road to recovery.
The Good Morning Britain host suggested the decision, which has been greeted with anger by viewers, is because the broadcaster is having to tighten its belt amid a series of ongoing gender pay gap disputes
Viewers were left ‘devastated’ after the BBC announced the show would be axed over its soaring costs ahead of its 2022 mid-term review
The acclaimed journalist’s husband also swung in to support of his wife.
Journalist Mark Sandell posted his feelings about the ending of the popular morning show and praised its achievements on Facebook today.
He wrote: ‘Can you come up with a daily TV show that breaks stories, does investigations, serves an audience usually ignored by BBC News, and celebrates diversity in all its forms?
‘Can you make sure the young, passionate, predominantly female and committed team are so good that they’ll win BAFTA, RTS and Pink News awards, presented by a multiple Sony award winning journalist?’
The former BBC World Service producer is clearly angered at the lack of support given to the programme, and finished off by saying: ‘Yes? (to the above).
Thanks all the same….’
The decision also shocked Piers Morgan, who has slammed the BBC over it’s ‘very strange decision’ to axe it from the morning schedules.
The Good Morning Britain host suggested the decision, which has been greeted with anger by viewers, is because the broadcaster is having to tighten its belt amid a series of ongoing gender pay gap disputes.
Calling Ms Derbyshire a ‘superb journalist’, Piers tweeted: ‘Surely the BBC isn’t now finding the cash to pay for its gender pay fiasco by cancelling other women’s shows?’
MailOnline has contacted the BBC over the remarks. The broadcaster also declined to comment in the immediate aftermath of the reveal.
Viewers were left ‘devastated’ after the BBC announced the show would be axed over its soaring costs ahead of its 2022 mid-term review.
The move comes ahead of the mid-term and the renewal of its charter in 2027, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson reportedly open to reviewing the licence fee.
BBC Media Editor Amol Rajan reported last night that the cost of the programme was ‘deemed too high’.
He said: ‘The Victoria Derbyshire Show is coming off air. I understand @BBCNews is committed to Victoria + the (award-winning) journalism of the show.
‘Cost of doing it on linear channel when savings are needed deemed too high. BBC declined to comment ahead of an announcement next week.
The Victoria Derbyshire Show began in 2015 and broadcasts live on BBC Two and BBC News every weekday from 10am.
The programme won a Bafta in 2017 and has been nominated for several awards, including RTS Presenter of the Year.
Reema Patel said: ‘The quality of Victoria Derbyshire’s journalism is second to none.’
Media editor at BBC News Amol Rajan, posted an update on Twitter claiming the award-winning show successfully reached out to audiences the outlet ‘struggles to connect with’
Suzy Elneil said the announcement was ‘devastating’ with the show have ‘consistently won awards for its work on bringing human suffering to light.’
Former editor of the show Louisa Compton described the plan to axe the show as ‘madness’, saying: ‘An organisation that values original journalism and underserved audiences should not be doing this.’
She added that the programme ‘consistently breaks huge stories, has won countless awards including a BAFTA and has broken new ground’.
Journalist Emma Ailes, who works on the programme, said it was ‘devastating news’.
The Victoria Derbyshire Show began in 2015 and broadcasts live on BBC Two and BBC News every weekday from 10am. The programme won a Bafta in 2017 and has been nominated for several awards, including RTS Presenter of the Year
She posted on Twitter: ‘Sitting here putting together tomorrow’s @VictoriaLIVE. 3 other journalists on the team here with me, all young, female and so talented. And busting a gut to make it as brilliant a programme as ever despite devastating news today. I’ve never worked on a team that cared so much.’
Anna Collinson, who also works on the show, added: ‘It’s gutting this could mean the end of a young, talented, diverse team who are led by strong, female editors and a fantastic female presenter.
‘It’s gutting for our viewers. The BBC is constantly criticised for failing underserved audiences. The same audiences we were proud to serve and served well. I have already heard from interviewees who are devastated by this news.
‘We are a scrappy, feisty and passionate bunch and always did our absolute best to hold those in power to account.
‘Whatever happens now, I will forever be proud of working for this award-winning programme and will never forget everything it taught me.’
Shadow culture secretary Tracy Brabin said she would be ‘looking into why (the show) is being taken off air’.
She tweeted: ‘Rigorous campaigning & commitment to public having their say made it pretty unique in daytime TV.
‘Victoria herself was sharp & approachable with a personal journey that made her relatable.’
And Conservative MP Damian Collins, who is bidding to be re-elected as chairman of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee, said the reports were ‘disturbing’.
‘There needs to be a proper review of BBC finances as well as asking license fee payers what they value and want to see more of,’ he said.