Mersey universities and colleges back bid to bring Channel 4 to Liverpool

National broadcaster has invited bids from cities across the UK to be the home of its new national headquarters and will move 300 of its London-based staff out of the capital. Tony McDonough reports

Channel 4
Around 300 staff will leave Channel 4’s London headquarters to work at its new regional base

 

Universities and colleges across Merseyside united to give their backing to the bid to persuade Channel 4 to relocate to the Liverpool.

The national broadcaster has invited bids from cities across the UK to be the home of its new national headquarters. Channel 4 will move 300 of its London-based staff out of the capital.

Last month, Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson and Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram came together to launch the bid and now a consortium of education providers have thrown their weight behind it.

They include Liverpool John Moores University; the University of Liverpool; Edge Hill University; Hope University; LIPA; City of Liverpool College; Knowsley Community College; Wirral Metropolitan College; and Hugh Baird College.

In a joint statement, they said: “As the education consortium responsible for the creative industry talent pipeline, we want to make sure that our graduates, the future generation of broadcasting, have a role in the Channel 4 story.

“Relocation to the city that defined the cultural landscape makes perfect sense – just imagine what Channel 4 could achieve in Liverpool.”

Birmingham’s elected Mayor Andy Street has previously said he was confident his city would “get the nod” to be home to the new headquarters.

Salford’s Media City is also expected to be a strong contender but the two Merseyside mayors believe they have put forward a “compelling bid”.

Liverpool has a strong history with Channel 4. When it first went on air in November 1982 one of the first programmes to be broadcast was long-running Scouse soap Brookside, which for several years was one of its top-rated shows. Brookside creator Phil Redmond is one of the biggest advocates for bringing Channel 4 to Liverpool.

Mr Anderson and Mr Rotheram says Channel 4 would “find a soulmate in Liverpool” with a move that would breathe new energy into the public service broadcaster while transforming the city’s creative and digital sector.

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