Downing Street has revealed plans to televise daily press briefings with Westminster journalists in a major change to its communications strategy.
Lobby correspondents – the political reporters based in the Houses of Parliament – currently have twice daily briefings with the Prime Minister’s spokesman or deputy, who are both civil servants.
The briefings are on the record, meaning they can be quoted and attributed to Number 10, but are not broadcast.
Under the new plans, the afternoon session will be filmed at 9 Downing Street, while the morning briefing will continue to be held behind closed doors.
An experienced broadcaster is reportedly being sought to lead the White House-style briefings on behalf of the Government.
Boris Johnson confirmed the changes in an interview with LBC Radio, suggesting the public had liked having more direct information from ministers during the coronavirus press conferences.
He said: “People have liked a more direct, detailed information from the Government about what is going on – and I think that they’ve actually particularly liked our brilliant scientific and medical advisers, possibly more than the politicians to be frank.
“We do think that people want direct engagement and want stuff from us, and so we’re going to have a go at that.”
Mr Johnson said he would “pop up from time to time” at the briefings.
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