BBC inquiries: Who goes and who stays?

Two separate reports into why the BBC dropped a Newsnight report on sexual abuse by Jimmy Savile, and a subsequent story by the programme which led to a former senior Conservative party figure being wrongly implicated in sexual abuse, have criticised BBC management.

This graphic outlines the BBC's management structure for both Newsnight programmes, and what changes will be made in the outcome of both reviews.

bbc organisation chart
Pollard Review

Former head of Sky News Nick Pollard was brought in to review the way a Newsnight report dealing with allegations of child abuse against Jimmy Savile was treated by the BBC in December 2011.

His review was set up in October 2012 amid mounting questions about why the report was dropped from the programme.

Newsnight's editor Peter Rippon stepped aside, and director of news Helen Boaden and her deputy, Steve Mitchell, removed themselves from involvement in coverage of Savile allegations, to allow the review to proceed.

In his report, Nick Pollard criticised BBC management, but found no evidence of a cover-up.

Steve Mitchell resigned and Peter Rippon will be replaced, and possibly move to a new role.

MacQuarrie review

The director of BBC Scotland Ken MacQuarrie was assigned to investigate the circumstances of a Newsnight report on 2 November this year which led to a former senior Conservative politician being wrongly implicated in child abuse.

The fallout from the programme prompted the departure of director general George Entwistle after only 54 days in the role.

He resigned citing "the unacceptable journalistic standards" of the report, while Helen Boaden and Stephen Mitchell stood aside from their roles completely.

The MacQuarrie Review found that "basic journalistic checks on the story were not carried out" and the Newsnight team "did not make adequate attempts to seek validation for the story beyond what the reporter delivered".

Newsnight's editorial team will be replaced, with deputy editor Liz Gibbons moving to a new role.

The controller of the BBC's 5 live Adrian Van Klaveren, who was involved in the decision-making process on 2 November, will also move to a new senior position.

Key figures

Who Details
Chris Patten

Lord Patten, chairman, BBC Trust

Continues to head the trust, which is independent of BBC management and holds the executive to account. It is also the final point of appeal within the BBC for complaints on editorial issues.

Mark Thompson

Mark Thompson, former director general

Left BBC in October for job as chief executive and president of the New York Times. Called to give evidence to Pollard Review.

DG George Entwistle

George Entwistle, former director general

Lasted 54 days as director general. Resigned hours after a disastrous interview on BBC Radio 4's Today programme in which he said he had had no prior knowledge of the November 2012 Newsnight story that mistakenly linked a senior Tory figure to child abuse in north Wales.

Helen Boaden

Helen Boaden, director of news,

Stepped back from editorial involvement in Savile-related coverage while a review was carried out over the BBC's handling of the story. Then, on 12 November, when Tim Davie took over as acting director general, she stepped aside from all editorial involvement. Cleared by the Pollard Review and will return to her role.

David Jordan

David Jordan, director editorial policy and standards

Continues to provide advice to programme-makers and journalists, with responsibility for the BBC's editorial guidelines.

Steve Mitchell

Steve Mitchell, deputy director of news

Stepped back from editorial involvement in Savile-related coverage while a review was carried out over the BBC's handling of the story. Then, on 12 November, when Tim Davie took over as acting director general, Mitchell stepped aside from all editorial involvement. Resigned when the Pollard Review was published.

Peter Rippon

Peter Rippon, Newsnight editor

Stepped aside 22 October to allow investigation to proceed. Replaced as Newsnight editor after publication of Pollard Review, in discussion with the BBC on a new role.

Adrian Van Klaveren

Adrian Van Klaveren, Controller 5 live

Brought in to oversee Savile-related coverage when Helen Boaden and Steve Mitchell stepped aside, Van Klaveren supervised the 2 November Newsnight programme. Will move to a new role in 2013.

Liz Gibbons

Liz Gibbons, Acting editor, Newsnight

Appointed acting editor of Newsnight when Peter Rippon stepped down on 22 October, and oversaw production of the 2 November report. Will move to another role within BBC News.

Liz Mackean

Liz Mackean, Newsnight journalist

Worked with Meirion Jones on the Newsnight investigation into Savile and allegations of sex abuse.

Meirion Jones

Meirion Jones, Newsnight journalist

Worked with Liz Mackean on the Newsnight investigation into Savile and allegations of sex abuse.

More UK stories


Features & Analysis

  • Cartoon of women chatting on the metroChat wagon

    The interesting things you hear in a women-only carriage

  • Replica of a cargo boxSpecial delivery

    The man who posted himself to the other side of the world

  • Music scoreFinal score Watch

    Goodbye to NYC's last classical sheet music shop

  • Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton checks her Blackberry from a desk inside a C-17 military plane upon her departure from Malta, in the Mediterranean Sea, bound for Tripoli, Libya'Emailgate'

    Hillary gets a taste of scrutiny that lies ahead

Elsewhere on the BBC

  • Audi R8Best in show

    BBC Autos takes a look at 10 of the most eye-catching new cars at the 2015 Geneva motor show


  • A robotClick Watch

    The latest in robotics including software that can design electronics to solve problems

Try our new site and tell us what you think. Learn more
Take me there

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.