Strike action by BBC journalists could affect programmes on local radio stations later this month.

As many as 1,000 reporters are expected to take part in a 24-strike from 11am on March 15 - the same day that the Chancellor is due to deliver his spring budget.

The National Union of Journalists (NUJ) announced its members working for BBC England had voted “overwhelmingly” in favour of strike action as well as agreeing to a policy to refuse to work overtime or outside the terms of their contract.

The walkout is likely to affect coverage of the budget on the BBC’s local radio stations, such as BBC Radio Sussex.

The action comes in response to a proposal that stations share more content and broadcast less programming unique to their areas.

The plans would see local programming restricted before 2pm, with afternoon programmes across England shared between its 39 stations.

The NUJ warned the plans would lead to a loss of posts and journalists having to re-apply for their own jobs.

Paul Siegert, the NUJ’s national broadcasting organiser, said: “This result and the decision to take strike action shows overwhelmingly that the BBC’s proposals do not have the backing of its journalists.

“Local radio is supposed to be local. That is its USP and one of the main reasons why 5.7 million people listen to it every week.

“No one wants to take strike action but the future of local radio is at stake and so our members are left with no option.

“We urge the BBC to get back around the table and start talking to us to try and find a way forward.”

Further strike action is due to be announced, with dates being considered to coincide with the local elections, the coronation of King Charles and the Eurovision Song Contest.

A BBC spokesman said they were “disappointed” by the decision and that it is not yet clear what the impact will be on specific stations, including BBC Radio Sussex.

He said: “Our local plans are about delivering an even better service to communities across England, reflecting how audiences use the BBC, strengthening our online provision and increasing the impact of our journalism.

“We have consulted extensively with the NUJ over recent months and adapted our plans in response to feedback.

“We have assured teams working across our 39 BBC local bases that we will maintain overall investment and staffing levels in local services and we’ll work hard to minimise the risk of compulsory redundancies.”

The plans come as part of cost-saving measures, as the BBC previously said that due to a freeze in the licence fee and inflation it faces a £400 million funding gap by 2026/27 and must make savings.

Some 382 jobs at the service are being lost as part of plans to move to a digital-led offering, it was announced in September.