Sunday, 11 September 2011

Remembering 9/11

Fred Bradley blogged his experience of 9/11, including some fascinating audio of what was then News Direct, and it moved me to do the same.

I was visiting Gloucester with Trafficlink's Operations Director, Jag Ensor, to meet with GWR's head of news, Jo Littlehales, who was based at Severn Sound. We were having lunch somewhere in Eastgate Shopping Centre where they were based, when Jo's mobile rang - there was something going on in New York, and she needed to get back to the station. In no tearing hurry, we settled up the bill and went our separate ways. As Jag and I walked back through the shopping centre, wondering what all the fuss was about, we stopped briefly to look at the rolling news channels playing on the TVs in the shop windows, and it became clear. We drove back in silence, listening through the medium wave crackle to Simon Mayo on 5Live, doing his best to articulate what they were seeing on the television screens in the studio, the occasional moment of disbelief clearly audible.

If you're interested in a non-sensational retelling of journalists' stories from the day - including Metro Traffic Control's John Del Giorno - I recommend the book "Covering Catastrophe: Broadcast Journalists Report September 11" by Allison Gilbert. I've also collected some audio from the day and beyond, which I've used in training courses - some initial coverage from George Weber on WABC, and a couple of clips from Radio 1's Newsbeat, including Chris Moyles who was still on afternoons at this stage. It's below, but even the passage of time doesn't make it any easier to listen to...

9/11 audio by will.jackson

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