BBC News Staff Sleeping On The Job

BBC workers have been accused of wasting licence payers’ money after several were photographed dozing at their desks.

The napping night-shifters were snapped by an angry colleague on the BBC News Channel at Broadcasting House, London.

Turn on, tune in, drop off . . . staff member snoozes

The furious employee said: “It’s very difficult to work with someone snoring next to you.”

In the snaps, snoozing workers are seen kipping at their desks while getting paid for a BBC News shift.

One brazen man was photographed wearing an eye mask to shield his eyes from the office lights.

Nearby another dozes with a flat-cap over his face — and a furious colleague who took the snaps said one man even carries a duvet and pillow and naps for up to six hours.

Counting sheep . . . Perhaps he’s a fan of Countryfile

The whistle-blower said: “In a 12-hour shift I would estimate some staff do around an hour of work.”

“You can look around and there are three or four people in a row with their feet up and soundly asleep.

“I started taking photos as a joke but it’s not funny any more.

“Viewers and licence payers will be shocked by the wastage.”

Horizontal . . . Worker kips with headphones on — maybe he’s listening to BBC Radio Snore

Contracted BBC staff are paid from £40,000 to £75,000 a year.

And freelancers earn up to £450 — three times the annual £147 licence fee — for a 12-hour stint.

That includes an £80 bonus for working the night shift.

MP Peter Bone added: “It’s extraordinary that licence fee payers are effectively paying for people to have a nice kip at work. Someone at the BBC must get to grips with this.

Sparko . . . Snoozing journo didn’t even wait for his Book at Bedtime
Forty winks . . . Flat out with flat cap shielding eyes of Beeb worker on shift
Land of nod . . . Dozy worker may be listening to Radio 4’s Kipping Forecast
Zonked . . . The news never sleeps — but this journo finds the time to

“If it was a private company these people would’ve been sacked.”

The photos were taken between late 2013 and this April in the newsroom in the basement of Broadcasting House, central London.

Around 150 workers are on night duty in the room — seen in the background on BBC News at Six and BBC News at Ten.

At night the studio is turned off but staff should be busy producing hourly radio news bulletins, content for World Service radio and BBC World TV, plus video packages for the Breakfast Show.

The source added: “There are far too many managers so once they have delegated, there isn’t anything for them to do — so they go to sleep or watch Netflix.

“The next management doesn’t get in until 8am. There’s so much dead time. They even say to staff, ‘Watch what you want, as long as it’s not full screen or the ­viewers will see’.

“Someone’s asleep at their desk every night. We get an hour and a half break but some people take the p***.

Resting his eyes . . . No attempt to hide he’s asleep with eye-mask on and feet up

“Some in these ­photos are very qualified and have been there 20 years. It’s so lazy.”

“I’m not for privatisation usually but the BBC needs it. You’d never get away with sleeping at your desk in another newsroom.”

Tory Andrew Rosindell said: “Working through the night can be strenuous but such obvious overstaffing and idle work is exploiting the system.”

In dreamland . . . Whatever this reporter in headphones is listening to, it isn’t waking news

BBC News has a £63million annual budget. But it is facing cuts as the corporation prepares to lose £650million from the abolition of licence fees for the over-75s in 2020.

Earlier this year the Beeb faced a sexism row when it was revealed news anchor Huw Edwards is paid up to £599,999 a year and Fiona Bruce just £299,999.

The BBC said today: “This is a misleading story about people working a long night shift. When they take a break, whether they walk around the block, go for a cup of tea or just simply rest, that’s surely up to them.

“The BBC is hugely grateful to its journalists who work through the night to make sure the country has the best possible news service when it wakes up in the morning.”