ITV announces schedule revamp with slot for hour-long evening news and changes to soaps

Mary Nightingale will present the new hour-long programme which starts in March 2022. Credit: ITV

The ITV Evening News is to become an hour-long programme from March, as the network sees its biggest expansion of jobs in 20 years.

The most watched commercial national and international news programmes will run between 6.30pm and 7.30pm from March 2022, with even more focus on reporting from outside London to reflect the whole of the UK and live coverage.

The new hour-long programme will replace the current 30 minute programme, and will be presented by Mary Nightingale.

ITV says it's investing millions into the journalism that goes into the programme, with 27 new journalists, producers, multi-skilled camera operator and video editors being recruited.

The network is taking on new correspondents in Wales, Scotland and the north of England, and a new Social Affairs reporter based in the north of England.

The change in schedule means Emmerdale will move to a 7.30pm slot, and Coronation Street will move to three hour-long episodes on Mondays, Wednesday and Fridays at 8pm.

ITV’s Director of News and Current Affairs, Michael Jermey said: "The expansion of the network evening news programme and the investment in new roles is an enormous vote of confidence in ITV News' journalism, which has continued to deliver strong exclusives and insightful reporting year after year, with 2022 so far being no exception.

"ITV's news on television and digital platforms informs millions of people every day.

"It sits alongside strong current affairs output such as the Tonight programme, Peston, The Martin Lewis Money Show and the Bafta and Emmy award winning Exposure strand.

"ITV's impartial, independent journalism makes an enormous contribution to public service broadcasting in the UK."

The hour-long programme will air directly after ITV nations and regional news.

ITV’s Evening News programme was watched by an average of 3.2 million viewers - a 21% share of viewing in 2021, and the programme has posted its highest viewing shares for a decade, in 2020 and 2021.

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