CHCH TV has cancelled tonight's newscast. "The fear is the station is shutting down or being dramatically reduced."

This is awful news for CHCH employees, which includes two-time Toronto Mike'd guest Mark Hebscher, but it's also sad news for those of us who grew up tuning in channel 11.

I have great memories of watching The Hilarious House of Frightenstein on CHCH. Billy Van was awesome on that show. Steve Smith alone gave us Me & Max, Smith & Smith and The Red Green Show.

Then, there was Maple Leaf Wrestling. I'll never forget Billy Red Lyons saying "don't cha dare miss it". I still use that line periodically.


CHCH is a Hamilton station, but in the days when I'd fiddle with a television antenna to bring in a very few stations, it was always there. Sadly, it's losing money, and the future is very uncertain.

Update: The CEO of Channel Zero, Roman Podzyhun, just came on CHCH TV to announce the news will return Monday. He says they're "making significant change" to schedule with "less local programming".

The Globe and Mail is reporting that "roughly half the staff will be laid off". Channel 11 L.P. has filed for bankruptcy, so those being fired won't receive severance. That really sucks.

I'm going to start a list of people who were let go today. 80-100 people 129 full-time employees and close to 30 part-timers got a pink slip without severance.

  • Mark Hebscher
  • Donna Skelly
  • Melissa Raftis
  • Cindy Csordas
  • Elise Copps
  • Matt Hayes
  • Scott Urquhart
  • Lori De Angelis
  • Natalie Marconi
  • Ken Welch
  • Lauran Sabourin
  • Jaclyn Colville

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Comments (42 - click here to join in!)


I watch sportsline all the time. REALLY hope that stays.

Between Keith Olbermann's ESPN show, Bill Simmons leaving ESPN, Gratland getting shut down, and OTR leaving the air, way too many of my favourite sports programs have gone by the wayside lately. Sportsline better not be new addition to that list.

December 11, 2015 @ 4:29 PM

Phillip Blancher

Hebsy just tweeted Sportsline is gone!

December 11, 2015 @ 6:24 PM


Saddening. I really hope Hebsy resurfaces somewhere soon. He's one of the few sportscasters out whose opinion I value and appreciate over the multitude of talking heads out there. Sportsline was a great show.

Thoughts go out to all those affected by these cuts. Between this and the mass Bell layoffs, it hasn't been a good month for the media industry in Canada. Once again, more local Canadian programming being cut to show (what will probably amount to) more American reruns instead.

December 11, 2015 @ 7:08 PM


This is awful news. Between Bell Media's rampage and now this, it seems like a truly awful and terrifying time to be in broadcasting. It's also sad because more than anyone else I can think of, they were making an honest to god effort to provide something resembling local programming and it's a shame that it hasn't been as rewarding as they'd hoped.

I'm like you. I have so many memories of watching CHCH over the years. It was the first place I ever saw pro wrestling, which is something I've been a fan of literally for about as long as I have memories. But it's not just that. Red Green and Smith & Smith as you mentioned, Comedy at Club 54, the various news personalities and fishing shows I saw while waiting for wrestling to come's even the place where I watched ALF, which was a childhood favourite.

Hopefully the station can somehow bounce back from this and still be something worth watching.

December 11, 2015 @ 7:09 PM


Tiny Talent Time & Norm Marshall with sports news & watching Hamilton JR Red Wings games.

December 11, 2015 @ 7:35 PM

Rob J

Channel 11's airings of WWF Saturday Night's Main Events in the 80s and 90s was such a welcome pleasure. Seeing legit matches in the middle of the night was awesome

December 11, 2015 @ 7:51 PM


What did we expect. We are losing all sorts of Canadian traditions. Sportline gone, so more ESPN shows about basketball and NCAA football that no one in the GTA follows but thinks it's cool to say they do, while making fun of any Canadian show or sport

December 11, 2015 @ 9:10 PM


What did we expect. We are losing all sorts of Canadian traditions. Sportline gone, so more ESPN shows about basketball and NCAA football that no one in the GTA follows but thinks it's cool to say they do, while making fun of any Canadian show or sport

December 11, 2015 @ 9:11 PM


2 weeks B4 Christmas??

Who is running this company. A$$h0le$ who have no heart or compassion for those who have worked at CHCH for many years.


December 11, 2015 @ 11:20 PM


Why did no one get severance? Aren't they entitled to something?

December 12, 2015 @ 12:25 PM


@andrew 21:11
Happy Hanukkah (Dec 6 - 14). Hopefully not like firing Streek right near Blue Monday anniversary.

December 12, 2015 @ 3:26 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


Apparently, the filing for bankruptcy by Channel 11 L.P. has made this legal.

December 12, 2015 @ 3:31 PM


Terrible. I've always admired CHCH. (Aside from the E! years.) It was a great source of entertainment when I was a kid.

But if you think this is bad, just wait for à la carte cable. That's gonna be a bloodbath.

December 12, 2015 @ 7:47 PM


Steve & Justin: Newcap also recently let go of 20 people across the country (1 week after the Bell mass cuts). The broadcast landscape in Canada undergoing a significant change right now, and it's not over yet.

December 12, 2015 @ 8:33 PM


I hope whomever decided that the "no severance" path was the way to go is in need of a visit from three ghosts.

I know it's legal but it doesn't make it right.

December 13, 2015 @ 10:07 AM


Sorry Hebsy, but Liz is better looking.

Too bad for Hebsy & Bubba, these 2 guys had the best sports recap show, better than those clowns on ESPN. Bubba is a real character.

Media almagamation is king now. The little guys are being forced out, unless they retool & go the internet way which is the way to view programming on your TV ie Gica Android

December 13, 2015 @ 1:33 PM


sorry to see anyone go to bad this could not have been this the end for the station?

December 13, 2015 @ 6:35 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


The station will continue, but with less news and less original programming. They just buy cheap US programming and air that.

December 13, 2015 @ 7:10 PM


Sorry to hear this… I would stop by often when passing by the channel over the years.. especially if Hebsy was on… now no need to even slow down as zoom by.

All the best to Mark & the others… thanks for the memories… they not only made their show.. they made their show better… a poor play on Hebsy's tag line :-(

December 13, 2015 @ 7:22 PM


i just put the news on and it wasn't there and now I've just read what happened. I am shocked and so so sad. CHCH is a great station and all the people are lovely, so respectful and nice to each other and doing a great job. What will we do without Matt Hayes? And Lori Deangelis- I like her so much. This is so auful. You are all like family and my heart goes out to you to be let go with nothing after everything you've done for all of us. I am so sorry.very very sad. Thankyou to all of you for everything. You did a brilliant job and will be missed terribly.

December 13, 2015 @ 11:59 PM


Surprised by some of the names listed and some of the names not listed. I read elsewhere that the entire weather team was gone. Matt, Brian Wood, Steve and Shelley. I guess we will know over the next few days who was hired back and whether they agreed to return for, no doubt, less money.

December 14, 2015 @ 6:35 AM


Can relate to your employer running out of money before Christmas. Last year was very very rough.

December 14, 2015 @ 8:59 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

Some have been fired, but offered jobs in the "new CHCH" that they've accepted. This is essentially union busting, but legal, apparently.

Kate Carnegie, Bob Cowan and Annette Hamm are three who have done this.

December 14, 2015 @ 9:15 AM


Notice that the younger ones are coming back. Nick Dixon, Brittany Gogo, Kate Carnegie ( as a reporter", Bob Cowan, Annette Hamm, Taz Boga. The older war horses have either not been hired back or they have not announced it. Ken Welch, Matt Hayes, Donna Skelly, Scott Urquart, Lauren Saborin. It reminds me of the time when people like Connie Smith and Dan McLean were let go for a bunch of Ken and Barbies

December 14, 2015 @ 10:53 AM


Sorry to see the staff go. We have always watched the channel here in Niagara and liked it because it was local for us and the reporting, weather and local programming was excellent with great people. If the company thinks this will help them and save money, good luck, Because we will NEVER watch CHCH again and we are not the only ones who feel this way. We will just have to get local news and weather from the internet. See how that helps your rating CHCH. We have no words ( that can be printed ) to express the contempt we feel for such a company. We understand (having owned a company) that it is not always easy in business but you do not throw your long term dedicated employees to the curb you use a fair method for down sizing. Remember two things CHCH 1) employees are the backbone of a company and you have not engendered dedication in remaining employees and 2) what goes around comes around. Hopefully all
viewers will boycott the station and remaining employees will run fast, very fast away from this company because they will be the next victims.

December 14, 2015 @ 2:15 PM


Is that list of names you posted of CHCH employees that were just fired inside info or just speculation?

December 14, 2015 @ 3:38 PM


Alfonzse, not sure who you're asking but my list comes front various articles I have read. Sorry, no inside information

December 14, 2015 @ 4:34 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


It's a combination of people who have gone public on Twitter about getting fired, and names from articles in the MSM.

December 14, 2015 @ 4:36 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

If you're interested in an inside perspective, I will soon interview Mark Hebscher on my podcast about what exactly happened. Stay tuned here:

December 14, 2015 @ 4:38 PM


I was shocked and felt profound sadness that CHCH would choose such nasty and cold behavior so close to the holiday season. I also once had a long standing career that came to an end without being prepared for. The devastating effects of being " downsized" has affected my career path since I was rudely escorted out so as not to slow down a day's work at the office. I was fortunate enough to receive a severance package, but I have never been able to find the same kind of position that paid what I had grown to rely upon to raise my family. I ended up in a terrible retail job having to stand on my feet for long hours, working weekends, holidays and evenings. I feel very sad for the employees affected and can completely understand and identify with the shock and fear they must be facing. I just want to know why the station couldn't wait to kick them to the curb in the new year and at least give these dedicated employees a break! It is a reminder of how cold the world of business is. Best wishes to all affected, and shame on the big guys in charge, man talk about the grinch stealing Christmas!

December 14, 2015 @ 7:00 PM

Art Milburn

I turned on my TV to find sports line not on man I loved watching Mark and Bubba going at it.Great Show.
And also Square Off.And I don't live in your area .I'm east of Kingston in Brockville.
What a let down.
Good luck to the staff hope something turns up.

December 14, 2015 @ 8:23 PM



December 14, 2015 @ 9:17 PM

Cassie Cloutier

What a tragic effect this has on the people who worked there and us loyal viewers. No word about
Tim. I HOPE TO SEE all of you get great jobs. Now I have no great channel to watch. Guess the TV
will be turned off. ALL THE BEST TO OUR FRIENDS.

December 14, 2015 @ 10:17 PM

Len Carter

Both myself and my wife (now in our 50's) have grown-up watching CHCH. We cut cable over a year ago but remained loyal CHCH watchers via streaming every morning and evening. We were both shocked and dismayed to hear about the bankruptcy and especially the termination of so many staff. CHCH was/is an institution in the Hamilton region (and beyond) and it truly is a sad day to see what has happened and how it went down. Local programming should be the backbone of commercial broadcasting, but tragically is has been kicked to the curbside while our tax dollars continue to support the CBC so that people in Nunavit can stay apprised about what is happening in BC.

December 15, 2015 @ 10:23 AM

Dave C

I started my day with Tim Bolen and Jaclyn Colville on Morning Live First Edition @ 4:30am. Best coverage of news, weather, sports, entertainment, humorous antidotes-like watching a brother and sister. Tim remains but Jaclyn is gone. What a shame!!!

December 15, 2015 @ 11:23 AM


Bubba O'Neil is still at CHCH, he did the 6 o'clock sports yesterday.

December 15, 2015 @ 12:28 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

Here's Mark Hebscher spilling the details as to how it all went down on Friday.

December 15, 2015 @ 3:50 PM


Len Carter cuts cable, continues to watch by streaming but is dismayed at resulting consequences.

December 15, 2015 @ 5:09 PM


Fourteen, this is an excellent comment.

December 16, 2015 @ 11:41 AM

Alison in Ottawa

CTV/Bell Media Ottawa (CJOH) was recently decimated with layoffs and changes. Many long term employees lost their jobs and the community here was very disappointed, it seems that true local news coverage is becoming a thing of the past....

December 16, 2015 @ 3:45 PM


I'll miss Lori De Angelis on CHCH.

That is all.

January 4, 2016 @ 10:44 AM

Jody Thornton

Some news here on Nick Dixon's forthcoming departure from CHCH!Nick-Dixon-leaving-CHCH/toe84/5744aaf70cf2123d26b3e27e

May 25, 2016 @ 6:16 AM

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