Friday 24 November 2017

BBC 6 Music saved from closure

BBC 6 Music is being saved from closure - with the BBC Trust stating that "a convincing case" hasn't been made for the station to be shut down.

The BBC proposed the station's demise under a strategy rethink, sparking protests from politicians and stars.

The announcement is welcome news for 6 Music's fans, as well as stars like David Bowie, Jarvis Cocker, Lily Allen and Glastonbury organiser Emily Eavis, who have been vocal opponents of plans to axe it. Publicity generated by their campaign helped boost the small station's audience to more than one million listeners a week.

Cocker said: "I'm very happy that 6 Music appears to have been saved. It's great that everyone's finally agreed with all the arguments to keep it on air."

In the Initial Conclusions of its Strategy Review, the Trust wrote: "We endorse the BBC Executive's underlying ambition to do fewer things better and thereby focus the BBC more effectively on its core mission, ensure that it plays its full part in promoting the move from analogue to digital and have due regard for the BBC's competitive impact.

"The Trust does not agree that there is a consistent strategic rationale for closure on grounds either of promoting digital development or market impact."

The BBC Trust said that, if the BBC wanted to put forward a "different proposal" for the overall shape of its music radio stations to "further increase the distinctiveness of the output", it would consider it.

But it "would not expect to see a further proposal to make changes to 6 Music" unless the BBC could meet several conditions, including giving reassurance that there would be "long-term protection for the type of distinctive content currently available uniquely on 6 Music" and providing evidence that "the changes we have already requested to Radio 1 and Radio 2 are under way".

Press Association

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