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Read about the Radio 4 presenters
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Being a newsreader by Harriet Cass
The collapse of the twin towers on 9/11, the death of the Queen Mother, Nelson Mandela's walk to freedom, the fall of the Berlin Wall - all announced on Radio 4 by one of the team of newsreaders. They are a small band of very experienced broadcasters who have worked for many years as announcers. Although they are an integral part of Radio 4 Presentation, the newsreaders are based at Television Centre, working alongside the teams that produce the hourly summaries and the major daily bulletins.

Their day begins at 0530, their first task to check the Today programme running order, and the news running order on the computer for an early look at the stories that make up the morning news output. They can also see news agency reports to get further background information, and listen to news correspondents as they send in their reports. If there are any unfamiliar names, the newsreaders have access to a database with thousands of pronunciation recommendations. From 6.00 to 9.00am, they broadcast three bulletins, two newspaper reviews and three summaries - sitting in the Today studio next to the programme presenters.

After the Today programme, the two-minute summaries each hour come from a small "workshop" studio which the readers "drive" themselves. They operate their own microphones and play in the audio reports from correspondents. The day newsreader takes over before the midday summary, and reads the news in the World at One, the afternoon hourly summaries and PM, and the half-hour bulletin - Radio 4's Six O'Clock News.

They then hand over to the third newsreader of the day, who reads the summaries through the evening, and the news in the World Tonight, and finishes with the Midnight News. On weekdays, the Radio 4 newsreaders are on the air for a total of two and a quarter hours each day - a major contribution to the Radio 4 output.
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