BBC Wales has today announced ambitious plans for its coverage of the 2015 General Election on television, radio, online, mobile - and in local communities.
Covering more campaign miles than ever before, BBC Cymru Wales News programmes and services will tour key constituencies between Monday 20 April and Friday 1 May, calling in Barry, Carmarthen, Tregaron, Connah's Quay, Llandudno and Cardiff.
BBC Wales will be broadcasting live from these locations, giving constituents the opportunity to put their questions to the candidates and leaders in three special English-language debates. Bethan Rhys Roberts will host the first debate from Carmarthen, with the second in Llandudno, aimed at young voters and hosted by BBC Radio 1 DJ Huw Stephens.
On 1 May, and with just under a week to go, Huw Edwards will present the BBC Wales Welsh Leaders Debate live from the Sherman Theatre in Cardiff. Representatives of the six Welsh parties have been invited to debate some of the election campaign’s burning issues and answer questions posed by an invited audience from across Wales.
In addition, Pawb a’i Farn on S4C will host two election debates from Carmarthen and Bangor.
Campaign coverage will be led by BBC Wales’ team of presenters and political experts - Dewi Llwyd, Bethan Rhys Roberts, Nick Servini, Aled ap Dafydd, Vaughan Roderick and David Cornock. There will be expert analysis from specialist correspondents from across Wales, including Steffan Messenger, who will put younger voters at the heart of his reporting throughout the campaign.
Reporting and analysis of the six-week campaign will be underpinned by a comprehensive digital service, offering individual pages covering stories and candidate information from all of the Welsh constituencies.
On 7 May, Bethan Rhys Roberts and BBC Wales Political Editor Nick Servini will present the BBC One Wales results programme throughout election night, while Dewi Llwyd and BBC Wales Welsh Affairs Editor Vaughan Roderick will host proceedings on S4C. Both programmes will feature live results, expert views, interviews with the successful and losing candidates and analysis by interactive graphics presented by Arwyn Jones. These programmes will be simulcast on BBC Radio Wales and BBC Radio Cymru.
Mark O’Callaghan, BBC Wales Head of News and Current Affairs, says: “BBC Wales’ coverage of the election will be its most innovative and memorable yet, with our audience able to follow the journey to May 7 on television, radio, online and mobile.
“Viewers can also join us on the election trail as we take our News programmes on the road, giving voters the length and breadth of Wales the opportunity to raise issues that matter to them.
“On election night, our viewers and listeners will have a front row seat as we bring the results from each constituency, followed by expert analysis. As the picture unfolds, our correspondents will be breaking the stories and making sense of it all while expert guests will be offering their views of the key moments in Wales and the rest of the UK.”
BBC Cymru Wales News programmes and services will join a tour of key constituencies. As well as broadcasting live from these locations, BBC journalists will be taking the temperature among constituents, and putting their questions to the candidates and leaders in a series of special debates.
Dates and locations are as follows:
- Monday 20 April: Kings Square, Barry
- Wednesday 22 April: Guildhall Square, Carmarthen
- Friday 24 April: The Square, Tregaron
- Monday 27 April: Coleg Cambria, Connah’s Quay
- Wednesday 29 April: Llandudno Promenade
- Friday 1 May: Churchill Way, Cardiff
BBC One Wales will screen three Wales Report debates during the campaign: Bethan Rhys Roberts will host the first debate from Carmarthen on 22 April; a week later, on Wednesday 29 April, Radio One DJ and broadcaster Huw Stephens will be chairing a very different debate in Llandudno, taking questions from young people from across Wales; and on 1 May, Huw Edwards will host a Welsh leaders' debate live from the Sherman Theatre in Cardiff. Representatives of the Welsh Conservatives, Welsh Labour, Welsh Liberal Democrats, Plaid Cymru, UKIP and the Green Party have been invited to participate in the live Welsh leaders' debate.
Throughout the election period, the late evening edition of BBC Wales Today will be extended to 15 minutes on week nights, allowing time to cover the day's campaign highlights. From 30 March, BBC Wales Today will broadcast from 10.30pm until 10.45pm.
Daily Politics Wales debates will be broadcast on BBC Two Wales on 23 and 29 April, chaired by political correspondent Dan Davies; and Sunday Politics Wales will feature a series of leaders’ interviews throughout the campaign.
On S4C, as part of the channel’s comprehensive election coverage special editions of Pawb a'i Farn with Dewi Llwyd will be broadcast from Carmarthen on 23 April and Bangor on 30 April. Detailed analysis will also be offered in Y Sgwrs on Wednesday evenings.
As well as the live overnight television results programmes on BBC One Wales and S4C, viewers will be able to get the UK picture with a network results programme hosted by David Dimbleby from 10pm on 7 May, supported by Nick Robinson, Jeremy Vine, Emily Maitlis and Andrew Neil on BBC Two Wales.
There will be extensive analysis of the results across our news services on 8 May and beyond.
BBC Wales’s online election coverage will offer political news and analysis on desktop, mobile, tablet, the BBC News and BBC Cymru Fyw apps, as well as on social media.
It will offer individual pages covering stories and information and candidate information from each of the Welsh constituencies. Key moments during the campaign will be covered by live pages featuring text updates, tweets, TV and radio clips.
On election night, our services will offer multimedia live pages, results, rumours and expert analysis and we will be reflecting the latest developments across Wales on the @WalesPolitics Twitter account.
On BBC Radio Wales’ Sunday Supplement, Vaughan Roderick will interview the politicians, offer alternative perspectives on campaigning and the issues that matter to voters, as well as expert analysis and debates.
BBC Radio Wales’s Jason Mohammad will be interviewing senior representatives from the six Welsh parties from Monday 13 April. Jamie Owen will take an in-depth look at the campaign trail in Wales in a new documentary, Vote For Me. And a weekly satirical comedy show The Leak will take a sideways look at the election, starting on 27 March.
BBC Radio Cymru's Hawl i Holi election editions will be broadcast on 21 and 28 April. And Pont Gam returns for a second series for a look at the local elections in this unique village. There will also be a special edition of Pont Gam on the morning of 8 May.
The Election Night programmes on BBC One Wales and S4C will be simulcast on BBC Radio Wales and BBC Radio Cymru respectively. Radio Wales and Radio Cymru’s Good Morning Wales and Post Cyntaf will begin at 5am on Friday, 8 May.