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Salford revealed as host of first Sunak v Starmer live TV election debate

MediaCityUK will play host to next Tuesday’s first live TV election debate between sitting PM Rishi Sunak and his would-be usurper, Labour leader Keir Starmer.

ITV announced the timing of the debate, taking place on Tuesday, June 4 at 9pm and screening on ITV1, ITVX, STV and STV Player, this morning, but gave no details as to the location.

ITV Granada political correspondent and BAFTA and RTS Award winner Elaine Willcox has now let Larry the Downing Street Cat out of the bag, however, Tweeting that the show will be hosted “by the ITV team at MediaCity” in a, since deleted, post this morning.

Willcox was back to plugging the debate by teatime, though:

The hour-long show, Sunak v Starmer: The ITV Debate, will be moderated by journalist Julie Etchingham and will take place live in front of a studio audience.

It is the first live TV debate currently confirmed to be taking place between the main party leaders. Sunak’s team are reportedly pushing for six TV showdowns in the run up to July 4, while Starmer’s team is said to prefer two – one on ITV and one on the BBC. Sky News is also attempting to arrange its own debate between the pair in Cleethorpes.

One person who is looking forward to the Greater Manchester leg of the debate trail is comic and author Richard Osman:

Something of a US import, the first UK live election debate did not take place until 2010 when Labour’s Gordon Brown, Conservative David Cameron and the LibDems’ eventual kingmaker Nick Clegg took part in a three-way version of proceedings.

They have since become a staple of the campaign ritual, except for in 2017 when Teresa May declined to take part and promptly lost her small majority at the ballot box, though the two are not necessarily linked.

MultiStory Media, an ITV Studios label, will be production partner on the show, and MediaCity studio dock10 will host.

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