As it happened: BBC crisis after boss George Entwistle quits

Key points

  • Culture secretary says BBC should co-operate with any "value for money" inquiry into departing boss George Entwistle's pay-off.
  • Acting BBC director general Tim Davie insists he has a "grip" of the situation and says row must not overshadow child abuse investigations
  • Head of news Helen Boaden and her deputy Stephen Mitchell "step aside" while investigations into Jimmy Savile affair continue

Live text


  • Sarah Bell 
  • Trevor Timpson 

Last updated 12 November 2012


Welcome to our coverage of the continuing controversy surrounding the BBC following the resignation of director general George Entwistle


The future leadership of the BBC is uncertain after George Entwistle resigned following the row over a Newsnight investigation into chaild abuse in north Wales


It emerged last night that the BBC Trust has agreed to pay Mr Entwistle £450,000 - a year's salary - as part of the terms of his resignation. He was only in the job for 54 days

BREAKING 0831 Breaking News

Helen Boaden

It's understood director of news Helen Boaden and her deputy Steve Mitchell have "stepped aside."


Following the announcement that Helen Boaden and her deputy were "stepping aside" The BBC said director of communications Paul Mylrea says the BBC was not commenting, but there would be an announcement mid to late morning.


Just to give you some background on what is happening - Mr Entwistle resigned after a Newsnight report led to a former Tory treasurer, Lord McAlpine, being wrongly accused of child abuse.


Mr Entwistle had been under pressure to resign in the wake of two controversial decisions by Newsnight:

  • The first, not to broadcast a report exposing claims that the late BBC presenter Jimmy Savile sexually abused young girls
  • The second, to screen a film about allegations of historic child sex abuse in north Wales, which - although it did not name him - led to Tory peer Lord McAlpine being wrongly implicated


Abuse victim Steve Messham withdrew his accusation against Lord McAlpine a week later, saying he had been mistaken. And the BBC issued an unreserved apology for the broadcast.


Steve Mitchell

Here is a picture of BBC deputy head of news, Steve Mitchell, who is one of the managers who has "stepped aside".