BBC Names Eight to Complete Twelve-Strong Ruling Trust

13 October 2006

LONDON: The BBC Trust, newly formed under a tradeoff with the Blair administration to replace the BBC's former Board of Governors, has announced the appointment of another eight members to complete its twelve-strong complement.

Already in situ are BBC chairman Michael Grade; house-builder and property developer Dermot Gleeson; economist Jeremy Peat; and Richard Tait, former editor-in-chief of ITN News.

Joining this convocation of the great and the good are . . .

  • Chitra Bharucha (vice-chairman), former consultant haematologist and chair of the General Medical Council;

  • Diane Coyle, an economist, member of the Competition Commission and former economics editor of The Independent;

  • Alison Hastings (trustee for England), former regional newspaper editor;

  • Patricia Hodgson, the former chief executive of the Independent Television Commission;

  • Rotha Johnston (trustee for Northern Ireland), independent businesswoman;

  • Janet Lewis-Jones (trustee for Wales), for 13 years director of the BBC Children in Need Appeal;

  • David Liddiment, the former director of programmes at ITV;

  • Mehmuda Mian Pritchard, a solicitor and Independent Police Complaints commissioner.
The three national trustees will be paid £40,000 ($74,232; €59,210) annually, the other members £35,000 - sums which, while not princely, will be seen by ordinary Britons as a handsome return for a commitment of just two days a week.

The trust, which replaces the present BBC board of governors on 1 January 2007, is charged with ensuring that the publicly funded media giant does not compete unfairly with its commercial rivals.

Says chairman Grade: "[It] has a very different role from that of the Board of Governors it replaces. The new Charter requires that the trust is independent of BBC management, representing the interests of licence fee payers.

"We must consult the public to ensure our decisions are properly informed by those who pay for the BBC. The trust will recognise that every licence fee payer also has an interest in the wider choice offered across the industry."

Data sourced from BrandRepublic (UK); additional content by WARC staff