Wednesday, 17 October 2007

Crossrail fare rises: A stitch-up?

Last night the BBC London News led with a story bluntly stating that fares in London would have to go up to pay for Crossrail. The thing is, this story seems to be built entirely around catching the mayor out saying these words:

Fares are going up to pay for the cost of the borrowing to do the construction
Not much arguing with that. Now watch the video. Not only does it start awkwardly, apparently mid-sentence, but he says immediately afterwards that they aren't going to go up, and put out a press release this morning denying the story.

I've emailed both parties for clarification. The Mayor's office say the quote is taken from a hypothetical discussion of what might happen as a last resort if interest rates go out of control, which would mean the BBC cut off a rather important part of the clip. BBC London News haven't replied.

I realise the naivety of expecting even basic journalistic standards from local news, but unless I've got the wrong end of the stick, this is a just a little bit brazen, isn't it?