Lord Patten to fight to protect BBC World Service

Lord Patten, the new BBC Trust chairman, has told the Sunday Telegraph he will fight to protect the BBC World Service.

The corporation has taken on funding responsibilities for the World Service has part of its licence fee settlement with the coalition government last year. The corporation, as part of the same agreement, took over funding for BBC Monitoring and also the Welsh language channel S4C. With the licence fee freeze and new funding responsibilities the BBC is seeking cuts across its services but Lord Patten have vowed to protect funding for the World Service. He told the Sunday Telegraph it was a “priority” of his to protect it especially the “core” Arabic, Somali and Hindi services.

“If you want to know how good the BBC is, just spend time somewhere else…..If you took anyone from any other country who comes here or listens to the World Service or looks at some of the BBC services, they think it’s a fantastic organisation.” – Lord Pattern speaking to the Sunday Telegraph

The BBC is seeking ways across its output to cut costs with a wide range of suggestions being put forward by the corporation. Some of the proposals include cutting children’s programming for BBC One – meaning they would solely air on the CBeebies or CBBC – or axing BBC Two’s daytime output and simulcasting with the News Channel. The Sunday Telegraph claims – opening up an age old debate – that BBC Three or BBC Four could be axed. It is not the first time and won’t be the last that the media have suggested the future of the digital channels are in doubt.