Beth Rigby to chair Sky News Leaders Special

Tuesday 11 June 2024

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer live in Grimsby

Both will face a 20-minute in-depth interview and 25-minute audience Q&A

The Battle for Number 10 - Sky News

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer will take part in The Battle for Number 10 - a Sky News Leaders Special Event at 7.30pm, Wednesday 12th June, live from Grimsby.

Sky’s award-winning Political Editor Beth Rigby will scrutinise both on their commitments to the country during 20-minute in-depth interviews, revealing more about the leaders vying to be the next PM. 

Lead UK Presenter Sarah-Jane Mee will be amongst the live representative audience drawn from the local area and nationally, as they put their questions to Sunak and Starmer in 25-minutes slots. There will be a coin toss to decide who goes first.

The complex composition of the new Grimsby and Cleethorpes constituency means it’s shaping up to be a key battleground, and both leaders will have the opportunity to speak directly to local people.

Labour will need an 11.7 point swing to win this newly-merged constituency back from the Conservatives and the bellwether town is expected to reveal wider national voting trends.

The Battle for Number 10 is available to watch for free on Sky News, and to stream on the Sky News website and App on YouTube. It will also be simulcast on Sky Showcase and Sky Mix.

Wraparound coverage across the day starts with Kay Burley at breakfast, before Jayne Secker picks up through the day meeting the locals of Grimsby ahead of the evening event. Lead Politics Presenter Sophy Ridge will front a special programme 5pm-7.30pm, before coming back on air with the wash-up at 9pm from the spin room. Gillian Joseph will present a special edition of Press Preview live from Grimsby as she is joined by a panel to look at tomorrow’s headlines tonight

The Battle for Number 10 special event, Wednesday 12th June 7pm-10pm (leader’s event 7.30pm-9pm) on Sky News – free wherever you get your news.

Freeview channel 233, Sky 501, Virgin 603, BT 313 and streaming on the Sky News website, App and across social channels. It is also available to watch on Sky Showcase.


Grimsby & Cleethorpes

Sky News has been regularly reporting on the issues facing local residents in this must-win marginal constituency of Grimsby and Cleethorpes.

Target Town, a multiplatform series has followed the constituency ahead of the election hearing from locals to understand the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead, and to discuss with constituents how the future could look depending on which political party is elected.

Grimsby turned Conservative for the first time since the end of the Second World War in 2019, with many people at the time feeling a cultural rift with the Labour Party.

The constituency has now been combined with Cleethorpes, where the Tories have been in power since 2010, but support for them is fading.

Since its formation in 1997, Cleethorpes has been a bellweather seat, backing the largest party in Westminster

It contains a rural conservative base as well as urban voters who in more recent years backed the promises of levelling up and Brexit offered by the Conservatives

The complex composition of this new constituency means it’s shaping up to be a key battleground

The Battle for Number 10 format

‘The Battle for Number 10’ format has been successfully used by Sky News for leadership contests and elections in 2015, 2016, 2017 and most recently for the Conservative leadership race between Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak in 2022.

Sky News spearheaded the campaign for election debates to be introduced in 2010 and hosted the first televised UK leaders’ debate that year alongside the BBC and ITV. The first of its kind debate saw Labour Leader Gordon Brown, Liberal Democrat Leader Nick Clegg and Conservative Leader David Cameron, go head-to-head.