BBC to cut 300 jobs in its production arm

Emma Haslett
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The BBC said it needs to make further cuts (Source: Getty)

The BBC will cut 300 jobs in its production arm as part of a wide-ranging restructuring, it said today.

The broadcaster said the number of staff at BBC Studios will be slashed as it continues to cut costs - with most of the job cuts taking place in England.

As part of the BBC's cost-cutting drive, it has already removed its guarantee half of its programmes are made by BBC Studios.

Yesterday it said the studios will move towards a "flexible model", bringing in staff for fixed periods and retaining others for year-round programming.

The BBC said it had saved £1.6bn in its new charter, mostly through productivity, but "more savings need to be found". Staffing, which accounts for a quarter of its costs, "has to play a part in that", it added.

"These plans - including today's changes for BBC Studios - are all focused on enhancing what we can deliver for the public, and ensuring there is a strong, world class BBC for audiences for the future."

Mark Linsey, director of BBC Studios, said:

A strong, creative and competitive BBC Studios is crucial to maintaining the BBC’s role as one of the world’s great programme makers – and we are committed to delivering the best content in all our genres. These plans will ensure we can compete successfully in the future.

The BBC has been criticised over its lack of diversity by communications watchdog Ofcom. Sharon White, the regulator's chief executive, said the corporation will not receive "special treatment" when Ofcom begins overseeing it next year.

“We have done an awful lot of research, talking to people in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and they do not feel the stories being told sufficiently reflect their stories,” she told the Financial Times.

There may be further savings it can make - a freedom of information request by City A.M. earlier this week showed it has spent £60m on hotels in the past seven years, and 2016 is on track to be the highest on record.

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