Dyke outlines plans for up to 80 local TV stations

Former BBC director general Greg Dyke has outlined plans for local TV network and described previous plan as being ‘too cautious’.

Dyke, who is investigating the possibilities of a new local TV network for the Government, laid out a more ambitious plan than those of investment banker Nicholas Shott, who has been handed a similar task.

In a speech delivered at York University, Dyke said that his Local Television Advisory Committee would recommend a network of up to 80 stations, at a cost of over £500,000 a year.

The investigation is being conducted ahead of the expiry of ITV’s license to provide regional news across its network in 2014 and follows the Government scrapping a pilot scheme last year to provide a replacement news service to the ITV network.

Dyke also admitted that should local television be introduced, there was a danger that some cities, such as York, would miss out.

He said: "Instead local television will be concentrated in the dozen or so cities which are already well served by regional television – the likes of Leeds, Birmingham, Newcastle and London rather than those that aren’t well served like Sheffield, Coventry, Sunderland, Exeter and of course York."

This was followed by a call to Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt to be ‘courageous’ in proceeding with the scheme.

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