BBC JOURNALISTS walked out just after 11am on Wednesday from the radio and main entrances at Broadcasting House in central London.

Around 25 journalists left the building to join officials from the National Union of Journalists (NUJ).

BBC employees across England are walking out for 24 hours in protest against proposed cuts to the broadcaster’s local radio output.

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The demonstrators held placards reading “stop the cuts” and “save local news”, while one homemade sign read “keep BBC radio local”.

They chanted “save local radio” and “keep local radio local”.

Labour MP and former shadow chancellor John McDonnell also attended.

The BBC confirmed disruption to its local TV and radio services across England on due to the strikes.

Paul Siegert, the National Union of Journalists’ (NUJ) national broadcasting organiser, said: “People are resigned to to the long haul.

“This strike is 24 hours – straight off the back of that we move to a work-to-rule.

“In local radio, regional TV, good will is really important – people tend to work extra hours, they come in early, they go home late, they cover for their colleagues who have gone off sick.

“That will all stop as part of the work to rule — we hope that will have an impact, we hope that will get the BBC back around the negotiating table.”

He added: “As things stand if we can’t get back around the negotiating table, then we’ll talk about other dates and some of the dates that our members have been talking about is the local election results day which is May 5 when local radio plays a massive part in explaining the results and being at counts across the across the country, and also May 6 which is the King’s coronation.”

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Faith in BBC director-general Tim Davie is also at an “all-time low” after the suspension and reinstatement of Gary Lineker, Siegert added.

He went on: “I don’t think we’re at the stage where we’re calling on Tim Davie to resign yet.

“But I think faith in him is certainly at an all-time low and he needs to work hard to rebuild that faith over the coming weeks and months.”

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A spokesman said: “We’re sorry that audiences will experience some changes to local TV and radio services in England as a result of industrial action by the National Union of Journalists. We have tried to minimise disruption as much as possible.

“We are obviously disappointed that the strike has gone ahead. We have a plan to modernise local services across England – including more news journalists and a stronger local online service – which will see no overall reduction in staffing levels or local funding. Our goal is a local service across TV, radio and online that delivers even greater value to communities.

“We will continue to engage with the trade union and do everything possible to minimise the impact on staff.”