Steve Hewlett Memorial Fund

Nick Robinson discusses the challenges facing journalism at the Steve Hewlett Memorial Lecture

If traditional broadcasters are to thrive in an era of social media they need to emulate some of the best qualities of Steve Hewlett’s journalism. That was the essence of the first Steve Hewlett Memorial Lecture, given by BBC broadcaster Nick Robinson, a friend and colleague of Hewlett’s.

Robinson outlined the challenges facing BBC News and other traditional news broadcasters in a heartfelt talk delivered to a packed auditorium at London’s University of Westminster.

BBC's Nick Robinson calls for a new style of journalism in Steve Hewlett Lecture

Nick Robinson delivering the inaugural Steve Hewlett Memorial Lecture (Credit: RTS/Paul Hampartsoumian)

The evidence is already clear that millennials largely ignore the news coverage of the traditional UK TV networks, said the Radio 4 Today presenter.

Unless broadcasters raise their game, Robinson said, there was a risk that quality news organisations like the BBC, ITN and Sky News would lose future generations of listeners and viewers.

Robinson, a former BBC and ITN political editor, said that erosion of trust in public institutions and the rise of alternative sources of news meant that traditional broadcasters needed to try harder.

Stewart Purvis takes on the Great North Run for Steve Hewlett Memorial Fund

The former Chief Executive of ITN and Ofcom regulator made the decision to take part in the Great North Run on what would have been Hewlett's 59th birthday.

He said of his decision, “It seemed the perfect moment to confirm I was going to do it. I have shaken off a few injuries, which I picked-up during training and I will definitely get round the half marathon course."