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Ofcom STV Fiona Hyslop

Scottish cabinet secretary for culture Fiona Hyslop criticises Ofcom appointment of Local TV licences in Edinburgh and Glasgow

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By Stephen Lepitak, -

January 11, 2013 | 2 min read

Fiona Hyslop, the Scottish Cabinet secretary for Culture and External Affairs has criticised the appointment of local TV licences within Glasgow and Edinburgh, stating her belief that southern Scotland was in greater need of investment.

Hyslop, who congratulated STV on winning both licences, which will see the broadcaster work alongside Glasgow Caledonian University and Edinburgh Napier University, said that servicing Scotland's central belt, which already receives coverage from BBC Scotland and STV, should not have been the priority.

“The priority should be delivering for viewers in the South of Scotland - who are arguably most in need of local television as they currently receive local news on Channel 3 which is broadcast from Gateshead - and addressing the need for choice in public service broadcasting across Scotland, such as through a publicly-funded Scottish Digital Network," Hyslop said in a statement.

“The television licence fee has been frozen and top sliced by the UK Government to pay for local television and the Welsh channel S4C, at the expense of audiences across Scotland. This damaging settlement has led to job cuts at BBC Scotland, with up to 120 posts going by 2017 – and these cuts are beginning to bite.

“I am committed to protecting public service broadcasting. Under independence, Scotland would have full responsibility for broadcasting, which provides opportunities to better meet the needs of audiences here while reflecting Scottish life, culture and interests.”

The licences will run for up to 12 years each with Ofcom having now awarded 13 licenses across the UK of the 21 available, with some potentially ready to go live before the end of the year.

Ofcom STV Fiona Hyslop

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