This week was a big week for UTV. Popular weather presenter Frank Mitchell and distinguished political editor Ken Reid both left the station.
Both can genuinely be described as institutions. Pres fans will also know that Frank was originally an in-vision announcer before moving on to other presenting roles.
This week is also the anniversary of the demise of UTV continuity.
But the loss of two high-profile members of the team together is a much more significant moment. It all reminds you what a brand really is.
It is about the values of the product and the organisation encapsulated in the name and the logo – not the logo in isolation.
For a regional TV station, the local personalities were inevitably a large part of that brand. But all through the years, the faces have changed.
In UTV’s case, some came and went: some like Gloria Hunniford and Eamonn Holmes went on to greater heights and some stayed in their roles for a very long time.
Longevity in a job can be both a good and bad thing. It can build familiarity with the audience and build trust and respect. There is no doubt that in Ken’s case his incredible subject knowledge came from decades of experience.
But in other roles in any organisation, it’s possible to be in the same role too long – even if staff just need to move around occasionally.
In TV terms, viewers can get tired of the same faces – or trust them because they have been around so long.
UTV as a brand now plays second fiddle to ITV but new weather presenter Louise Small will inevitably find that she is something of a brand ambassador.
But will the brand she encapsulates the values of be UTV or ITV?
With UTV now firmly part of the ITV family, it’s interesting to wonder if one little change to the weather service may come soon.
UTV, uniquely, still has some out-of-vision forecasts – notably at the weekends. Would rectifying this really be too hard?
Some other ITV regions take weekend forecasts from central hubs. Might UTV follow? Or could new talent be developed at the weekends?
PICTURED: Frank Mitchell and Ken Reid. COPYRIGHT: ITV plc.