BBC governors favour Dyke and Yentob `dream ticket'

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The Independent Online
THE BBC governors are seriously considering asking the Pearson boss Greg Dyke and the BBC television executive Alan Yentob to run the corporation together.

Under the "dream ticket" plan Mr Dyke would become director general, with Mr Yentob as his deputy. Mr Dyke and Mr Yentob are understood to have met to discuss the two-pronged leadership.

Mr Yentob, who has spent his entire career at the BBC, would be the creative force at the top of the hierarchy and be responsible for upholding established BBC values.

Mr Dyke, who made his name at LWT and invented Roland Rat, has never worked at the BBC. He has been the victim of an anti-Dyke campaign supported by the more conservative elements in the BBC establishment.

Mr Yentob is seen by some as gifted but too disorganised to carry the top job alone. However, he is too big a player to report to any of the other internal BBC candidates, such as the television news boss Tony Hall or the production chief Matthew Bannister. The full board of BBC governors met yesterday in the Council Chamber at Broadcasting House and were forced into small private huddles to discuss who should get the top job, a decision due in the next few weeks. Open discussion of the subject was impossible because the first full meeting of the board since the DG selection process began was also attended by the BBC's Executive Committee, which includes half the candidates on the shortlist.

The agenda did not include the question of the director generalship, but inevitably the governors were keen to discuss the subject privately.

"It was an intriguing situation," said a BBC insider, "as the key players in the selection process, both selectors and candidates, were all in the same room for the first time - along with the current director general, John Birt."

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