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UTV Live

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Country of origin  Northern Ireland
Executive producer(s)  Terry Brennan
Camera setup  Multi-camera
Network  UTV
Language  English
4.6/10 IMDb

Original language(s)  English
Editor(s)  Chris Hagan
First episode date  4 January 1993
Genre  Family film
Presented by  Paul Clark, Rose Neill
UTV Live httpspbstwimgcomprofileimages7878463018577

Location(s)  Belfast, Northern Ireland
Cast  Pamela Ballantine, Lynda Bryans, Paul Clark, Frank Mitchell, Jullian Simmons
Similar  ITV News, BBC Newsline, ITV Weekend News, Ireland Live, Daybreak Northern Ireland

Utv live intro 1997

UTV Live is a regional television news programme, produced by UTV, serving Northern Ireland.



The main edition of UTV Live airs from 6pm to 6.30pm every weeknight, covering the day's news, current affairs and sport from across Northern Ireland.

The 6pm programme is broadcast from Studio One at UTV's headquarters in Havelock House, Belfast with short bulletins broadcast from the continuity studio in the station's Central Technical Area. UTV also has studio facilities at Parliament Buildings, Stormont and news bureaux in Derry and Dublin with an intention to open a further bureau in Omagh. The station also makes use of video journalists based in Coleraine, Enniskillen and Newry.


UTV Live was introduced in January 1993 as a new name for Ulster Television's existing news programmes; Six Tonight, the station's half-hour evening news magazine, and Ulster Newstime for shorter bulletins.

Coinciding with the launch of a new franchise, the main nightly programme, UTV Live at Six was extended from 30 minutes to an hour and introduced six months before Ulster Television was rebranded as UTV. The station had previously broadcast a daily one-hour news magazine programme, Good Evening Ulster - the first of its kind in Britain - which ran from 1979 to 1987.

Shorter UTV Live bulletins ran throughout the day, receiving subtitles such as Morning News. and Early Evening News

Between 1995 and January 2013, UTV Live bulletins were not transmitted during GMTV and Daybreak (ITV Breakfast); The breakfast service was previously produced by Reuters, ITN, and subsequently Macmillan Media, following a dispute in 1994 when UTV opted out of GMTV to provide extra coverage of the Combined Loyalist ceasefire.

Following the introduction of the ITV Evening News on Monday 8 March 1999, the programme was brought forward by half an hour to start at 5.30pm. The first half-hour saw feature reports, light-hearted stories and the weather forecast branded as part of a separate programme, UTV Life, which ran before the main evening news, which started at 6pm and kept the UTV Live name. UTV Live and UTV Life were merged into one hour-long programme, running from 5.30pm, in 2002 and were split into separate programmes again on 3 September 2007, with the original titles in use from 1999 to 2001.

For one week in February 2004, UTV moved the first half-hour part of UTV Live in the schedules from 5.30pm to 1pm, to accommodate the networked 24 Hour Quiz. Although UTV claimed the change in slot for the features section of UTV Live would run until April 2004, viewer complaints saw UTV Live returned to the 5.30pm slot one week later.

Mid-morning weekday and lunchtime weekend UTV Live bulletins were axed in February 2009 when the station was permitted to reduce their weekly news output from five hours and twenty minutes to four hours. A separate sports bulletin, Sport on Sunday, was broadcast following the Sunday evening bulletin from September 1999 to early 2007. This bulletin was separate from the Sunday evening news as it was sponsored by the Daily Mirror.

Between February 2007 and April 2009, only the main weekday evening programme was branded as UTV Live, while all other bulletins were branded as UTV News.

UTV Live Tonight

On Monday 27 April 2009, UTV launched a 30-minute late evening news & current affairs programme, UTV Live Tonight, which aired after News at Ten on Monday – Thursday nights and incorporated the station's late news bulletin alongside extended political and business coverage.

On 10 August 2016, it was announced that UTV would axe the programme at the end of September 2016 and replace it with a ten-minute late news bulletin, airing each weekday after News at Ten.

The final edition of UTV Live Tonight aired on Thursday 29 September 2016. The station introduced a weekly hour-long Monday night current affairs programme called View from Stormont in October 2016.

UTV Life

UTV Life, a separate live magazine programme concentrating on features and light-hearted stories, was broadcast at 5.30pm on weekdays. This programme had its own editor and presenting/reporting team.

UTV Life originally began on 8 March 1999 as a stand-alone programme with features reports, light-hearted stories and an extended weather forecast. The programme ran from 5.30pm, preceeding UTV Live at Six until the two programmes were integrated into an hour-long UTV Live programme on April 2002.

The UTV Life branding for the features section of UTV Live returned to on-air use on Monday 3 September 2007. The features element of the programme again became a separate programme to accommodate a programme sponsorship deal. The relaunch of UTV Life saw the programme gain a different theme tune, opening title sequence and graphic design, with a similar presenting, reporting and editorial team as the former features segment of UTV Live.

As part of cost-cutting measures and a reduction in regional programming at the station, UTV Life was axed shortly after the broadcasting regulator OFCOM gave UTV the go ahead to reduce its non-news output, with the final programme airing on 6 February 2009.

The series returned in January 2016 in a weekly 30-minute timeslot on Friday nights, immediately following the late UTV Live bulletin and presented by Pamela Ballantine. The programme returned to a weekly primetime slot at 8pm in September 2016.

Broadcast times

UTV Live airs on UTV seven days a week.

  • Three short opts air as part of Good Morning Britain at 6:10am, 7:10am and 8:10am
  • A three minute lunchtime bulletin, following the ITV Lunchtime News
  • The main 6pm programme precedes the ITV Evening News
  • A ten minute late-night bulletin, following ITV News at Ten
  • At weekends, two ten minute bulletins are broadcast, preceding the ITV Weekend News – one later on Saturday afternoons and another on Sunday evenings.
  • Notable on air team

    Current notable on air team

    Former notable on air team

  • Lynda Bryans – presenter (1996–2010)
  • Mike Nesbitt – presenter (1993–2006); now Leader of the Ulster Unionist Party
  • Kate Smith – presenter (1993–2006); now a member of the Northern Ireland Screen board
  • In October 2008, UTV announced its intention to cut 13 jobs in the news department due to corporate restructuring. The station declared it was offering staff a voluntary redundancy package. Staff who were reported to have accepted the redundancy package were:

  • Ivan Little – reporter (1980–2009); now freelancer
  • Claire McCollum – presenter/reporter (2000–09)
  • Jeanie Johnston – Features Editor (2000–09); Reporter (1978–2009)
  • Fearghal McKinney – presenter/reporter (1994–2009)
  • Adrian Logan – sports editor; sports presenter/reporter (1985–2009)
  • References

    UTV Live Wikipedia