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How well does the BBC work in the nations and regions?


The House of Lords Communications Committee will this week visit MediaCityUK, Salford to hold four evidence sessions looking into the BBC's fourth public purpose: ‘Representing the UK, its nations, regions and communities'.

In four separate sessions on Thursday 29 October, the Committee will hear from:

At 11am

  • Jenny Baxter, Chief Operating Officer for BBC England
  • Peter Johnston, Director of BBC Northern Ireland

At 12noon

  • Ken MacQuarrie, Director of BBC Scotland
  • Rhys Evans, Head of Digital and Strategy at BBC Wales

At 2pm

  • Richard Williams, Chief Executive of Northern Ireland Screen
  • Caroline Norbury, Chief Executive of Creative England

At 3pm

  • Hywel William, Member of the Media Policy Group at the Institute of Welsh Affairs
  • Natalie Usher, Director of Screen at Creative Scotland

In the first two sessions, the Committee will explore issues including the representation of regional talent both on and off air, the importance of local news provision to local communities,; the issues surrounding local language programming, including the BBC's current understanding of ‘catering for the nations'; and how effectively it is made accountable to the BBC Trust for the fulfilment of the purposes.

In the second two sessions, the Committee will investigate a number of areas including the effect of devolved powers as they affect the broadcasting industry, whether the BBC is fulfilling its public purposes in relation to their regions; what they think of the argument that the BBC hinders commercial operators, and their reaction to the BBC Trust's proposal to change the wording of the public purposes.

The evidence sessions on Thursday 29 October will take place from 11am at BBC, Quay House, MediaCityUK, Salford M50 2QH.

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