BBC enter controversial Cliff Richard raid for journalism award

Helicopter coverage of police search submitted as ‘Scoop of the Year’

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The BBC has entered its coverage of the police search of Sir Cliff Richard’s home for a prestigious journalism award. It is understood the controversial coverage last August, which included live helicopter images of the singer’s home, will be considered for the category of ‘Scoop of the Year’ at the Royal Television Society’s journalism awards.

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No charges have been brought against Sir Cliff Richard, who has denied historic allegations of sexually abusing a boy under 16. The singer is said to be considering legal action against the corporation, The Independent reports.

The BBC and South Yorkshire Police faced criticism after it emerged journalists had been tipped off about the search, giving them time to scramble a helicopter.

A subsequent report by the Home Affairs Select Committee said the Corporation was “well within its rights” in running the story, but called the police force “totally inept” in their handling. The coverage also vexed rival ITN, who accused the BBC of using their shared helicopter without informing them beforehand, as per their agreement.

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The winner will be announced at a ceremony next month.