Bradshaw defends regional news plan

Proposals to use part of the television licence fee to fund a replacement ITV regional news service are expected to be defended today by Culture Secretary Ben Bradshaw.



Mr Bradshaw's first major speech on broadcasting since taking the role comes as his department released research suggesting the plans have public backing.

The former BBC journalist will deliver the keynote speech at the Royal Television Society's Cambridge Convention.

The study, released yesterday, assesses public opinion on plans to use a portion of licence fee money to help sustain public service programmes.

The Government's Digital Britain report published earlier this year suggested using 3.5 per cent of the fee - about £130 million a year - to fund ITV local news and other important, but less profitable, shows on non-BBC channels.

The Department of Culture, Media and Sport poll of 2,024 UK adults found 65 per cent felt that after 2013 a small part of the licence fee should be used to support regional news on other channels, with most of the fee still going to the BBC.

It also found 24 per cent felt the fee should be used only for the BBC.

The survey said 73 per cent of people thought it was important to have a choice of TV channels providing regional news.

According to the poll, 48 per cent of respondents favoured part of the licence fee being used for certain types of programmes on other channels, such as news, children's shows and dramas, while 35 per cent said it should be reserved for the BBC.

A row over the licence fee between BBC chairman Sir Michael Lyons and Mr Bradshaw followed the publication of the Government's plans.

Sir Michael hit back at claims by Mr Bradshaw, who blamed the BBC for creating "almost a feeling of despair" among staff by opposing plans to "top slice" the licence fee.

He said it was "surprising that a secretary of state who has just started a public consultation exercise should give the impression that he has already made his mind up so firmly".

Government sources said Mr Bradshaw is expected to reiterate his support for the BBC but also issue some challenges to the corporation.

Shadow culture secretary Jeremy Hunt said of the poll: "The Government is clearly getting desperate when it starts using polling like this to justify its position.

"They have immediately assumed that licence fee payers want their money to be spent on something when every other piece of research shows that if there is spare money at the BBC viewers want it back.

"Despite recent rhetoric the Government is still clinging to the idea that they have to spend taxpayers' money to solve a problem."

Veteran programme-maker Phil Redmond will also address the broadcasting convention, dubbed Riding Out The Storm, today.

Redmond, whose credits include Grange Hill, Brookside, and Hollyoaks, is expected to give a hard-hitting lecture, arguing that British broadcasters are not catering for the 11- to 15-year-old market.

"They are just playing it safe. It is all about a disconnect with viewers," he told this week's Observer newspaper.

Redmond will deliver the Huw Wheldon Memorial Lecture, which has previously been given by Sir David Attenborough, scriptwriter Paul Abbott and historian Simon Schama.

He told the newspaper: "The broadcasters are concentrating on making shows for children who are under 11.

"They stick with what is safe and easy and, in the case of the BBC, it fits with their family-viewing policy.

"Anything shown before 10pm has to be suitable for everyone, so you get children watching Top Gear instead of programmes made for them."

The convention has been planned by BBC director general Mark Thompson and will explore how British media can adapt to falling advertising revenues and an explosion of digital channels.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Life and Style
Phillips Idowu, Stella McCartney and Jessica Ennis
fashionMcCartney to continue designing Team GB Olympics kit until 2016
Sport
Shinji Kagawa and Reece James celebrate after the latter scores in Manchester United's 7-0 victory over LA Galaxy
football
Voices
voicesGood for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, writes Grace Dent
Sport
Farah returns to the track with something to prove
Commonwealth games
Life and Style
fashion Designs are part of feminist art project by a British student
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Campaign Manager

competitive: Progressive Recruitment: A leading marketing agency is currently ...

BI Analyst

competitive: Progressive Recruitment: A leading marketing agency in Central Lo...

DBA

£40000 - £55000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: DBA, London,...

Web / Digital Analyst - SiteCatalyst or Google Analytics

competitive: Progressive Recruitment: My client who are a leading publisher in...

Day In a Page

Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform
Climate change threatens to make the antarctic fur seal extinct

Take a good look while you can

How climate change could wipe out this seal
Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier for the terminally ill?

Farewell, my lovely

Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier?
Man Booker Prize 2014 longlist: Crowdfunded novel nominated for first time

Crowdfunded novel nominated for Booker Prize

Paul Kingsnorth's 'The Wake' is in contention for the prestigious award
Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned

Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster

John Walsh salutes those brave souls who have, throughout history, put their knives on the line
Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

A $25m thriller starring Sam Worthington to be made in God's Own Country
Will The Minerva Project - the first 'elite' American university to be launched in a century - change the face of higher learning?

Will The Minerva Project change the face of higher learning?

The university has no lecture halls, no debating societies, no sports teams and no fraternities. Instead, the 33 students who have made the cut at Minerva, will travel the world and change the face of higher learning
The 10 best pedicure products

Feet treat: 10 best pedicure products

Bags packed and all prepped for holidays, but feet in a state? Get them flip-flop-ready with our pick of the items for a DIY treatment
Commonwealth Games 2014: Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games

Commonwealth Games 2014

Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games
Jack Pitt-Brooke: Manchester City and Patrick Vieira make the right stand on racism

Jack Pitt-Brooke

Manchester City and Patrick Vieira make the right stand on racism
How Terry Newton tragedy made iron men seek help to tackle their psychological demons

How Newton tragedy made iron men seek help to tackle their psychological demons

Over a hundred rugby league players have contacted clinic to deal with mental challenges of game