The BBC Trust may have found its saviour

 

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News that Rona Fairhead is the Government’s preferred candidate as next chair of the BBC Trust has generally been well-received.

The former Sun editor and Brunswick PR David Yelland has described her as an “excellent choice”.

Ms Fairhead would be the first woman in the job and her candidacy has been a well-kept secret after many potential applicants ruled themselves out of a part-time role that proved difficult for the previous incumbents, Lord Patten and Sir Michael Lyons.

A non-executive chair of HSBC and former high-flyer at ICI, she was earlier this month being tipped as the first female chair of Barclays.

It’s said Ms Fairhead left the Financial Times Group, where she was chairman and chief executive, because she didn’t get the top job in 2012.

If successful, she might even save the BBC Trust – previously derided as an unworkable model.

Regulator’s rival sets sights high

As the Independent Press Standards Organisation (Ipso) prepares to start work this month, an upstart rival regulator, Impress, has announced the panel that will select its own board.

My first thoughts were who are these people and who will they regulate? But the Impress founder, Jonathan Heawood, is adamant it will be a serious alternative to Ipso, which has been established by the biggest newspaper and magazine publishers.

In accordance with Lord Justice Leveson’s wishes – and unlike Ipso – Impress will offer an arbitration service.

Its first clients, Mr Heawood said, will be some of the hundreds of hyper-local newspapers and websites that are unaligned to major publishers. But he still hopes some larger news organisations will sign up.

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