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Yorkshire drives Channel 5’s regional spend


Channel 5 invested 35.5% of its UK commissioning budget with indies based outside of London in 2019.

The ViacomCBS-owned channel has an out-of-London target quota, set by Ofcom, of 10%. In 2018, it spend 21.6% with regional indies.

According to the figures, 44 companies (or 40% of its suppliers) were based outside of the capital.

Regionally produced content accounted for 20.7% of its programme schedule last year (380 hours). This was a 27% year-on-year increase.

Since 2015, Channel 5 has invested £20m in Yorkshire-based programmes. Daisybeck in Leeds is one of the main beneficiaries, with series including The Yorkshire Vet and Springtime on the Farm. It has also commissioned programmes from Blakeway North and Crackit.

The channel has also aired hit drama, All Creatures Great and Small this year.

“Channel 5 looks beyond the metropolitan London bubble when it comes to programme-making, which in turn helps us to reflect audiences the length and breadth of the country,” said Ben Frow, Director of Programmes, ViacomCBS Networks UK.

“This approach is resonating with viewers, as the channel’s top four regions for share of viewing are all outside the M25, with London fifth. I am proud that we go above and beyond our PSB remit and that we are such strong supporters of the UK creative economy.”

Its pre-school programme, Milkshake! also increased its regional production by 100% year on year, with 45 hours of content which will air in 2020. It works with indies based in Liverpool, Manchester, Glasgow, Cardiff and Belfast.

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