UK children’s TV in £60m boost to ease concerns over imports

Published on: 2nd January 2018

Culture secretary announces three-year fund starting in 2019 to help cover production and distribution costs of British-made shows.

The government has launched a £60m fund to help make children’s television programmes in Britain, as concern grows that young people are growing up on a diet of foreign imports on Netflix and YouTube.

Karen Bradley, the culture secretary, said the money would help to fund up to half of the production and distribution costs of original children’s content made in Britain.

The money will come from unallocated funds from the 2010 licence fee settlement and will be distributed from 2019 for three years. The fund will focus on programmes from “new and diverse backgrounds” and those “made in the nations and regions.”

Spending on children’s television by the main UK broadcasters has broadly halved over the past decade, although the BBC announced this year that it would spend an extra £34m on children’s television over the next three years, pushing its annual budget to £124.4m. Alice Webb, the head of children’s TV at the BBC, told the Guardian that broadcasters had a responsibility to make programmes especially for children in the UK and it was an “absolutely core principle” for the broadcaster.


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