Broadcast magazine claims this morning that the channel – home to quirky comedies aimed at 16-to-34-year-olds, such as Little Britain alongside documentaries including its Bafta-winning, Our War – that plans are being drawn up to move the channel onto iPlayer.
The channel had been widely rumoured to be among the next wave of likely relocations to the BBC’s Media City base in Salford but its future has been thrown into doubt after BBC director general Tony Hall said the corporation needed to save another £100m a year during his speech at the Oxford Media Convention last week.
A BBC spokesman said last night that no decisions had been made but that “nothing is off the table”. An announcement is expected within the month.
It is reported that axing BBC3 would save nearly £90m in programming costs, the lion’s share of the £100m that Hall has to save. The cuts come on top of the £700m of savings the corporation is already making.
While those discussions continue, some of the celebrities who support the channel have been taking to Twitter to campaign.
I really hope reports that the BBC may kill BBC3 are just rumours. There support of new comedy in particular is vital! #saveBBC3
— Jack Whitehall (@jackwhitehall) March 4, 2014
Hearing horrible rumours about the possible closure of BBC3. This would be really bad for new comedy. Like, REALLY bad. #SaveBBC3
— Matty Birthday (@RealMattLucas) March 4, 2014