ITV PR head on the move to ITN

ITV Network’s head of public affairs Mark Gallagher is joining broadcast news company ITN in a new role, heading its media relations and public affairs.

ITV Network’s head of public affairs Mark Gallagher is joining

broadcast news company ITN in a new role, heading its media relations

and public affairs.



ITN is keen to assert its presence as an independent corporate

entity.



Since its creation in 1955 as a news provider for the ITV companies, ITN

has established itself as an independent business. The 1990 Broadcast

Act established ITN as a separate company, and it now provides news for

Channel 5 and Channel 4 and controls the content of Euronews. ITV is

still, however, its biggest contractor.



’As ITN develops its UK news businesses and its international

operations, particularly in Europe and the US, it needs to create a

better understanding among viewers, regulators and governments about its

achievements and future strategy,’ said Gallagher.



At the network, Gallagher oversaw UK public affairs, reporting to

corporate affairs controller Sue Eustace.



At ITN, he will be responsible for public affairs, media relations and

internal communications. He will report to chief executive Stewart

Purvis.



At present, ITN does not employ any public affairs officers full-time,

and handles issues through its six-strong public affairs committee,

which includes Purvis, editor-in-chief Richard Tait and associate editor

Sue Tinson.



ITN has a press office team of five, headed by senior press officer Anne

Were, who currently reports to Purvis.



When Gallagher arrives in May, Were will move into a new role, working

exclusively on media relations for the programmes ITN creates for

ITV.



Gallagher joined the network three years ago as a public affairs

manager.



While there, he worked on a campaign to change provisions in the

Representation of the Peoples Act. Before the campaign, broadcasters had

been subject to a veto by election candidates, who could stop them

showing footage of candidates in their constituency if they felt

representation was unfair.



As a result of Gallagher’s work, the Government agreed to abolish the

veto in the upcoming European, Welsh and Scottish elections. If the

trial is a success, the veto may be abolished altogether.



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