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Rival publishers do battle over TV licence bid

Three local press publishers are joining forces to fight Trinity Mirror and NWN Media for the right to run regional TV news in Wales.

Northcliffe, Newsquest and Tindle have launched a consortium with ITN, ITV Wales, Cardiff University’s journalism department and Welsh production company Boomerang for the Independently Funded News Consortia pilot project.

Proposals to launch three pilot TV news projects – covering Wales, Scotland and the North East of England – were outlined in the Digital Britain report in the summer and will take over the provision of regional news on Channel 3 from 2013. Licences are due to be handed out in March.

This latest bid, which is calling itself Taliesin News, is being led by Clive Jones CBE and going head-to-head with press publishers Trinity Mirror, North Wales-based NWN Media, and media producer Tinopolis, all of whom have announced their intention to submit bids.

Clive Jones is a non-executive director of S4C, chairman of GMTV, chair of Skillset and honorary visiting professor at the Cardiff School of Journalism.

He said: “Taliesin News brings together an unrivalled team of partners to create a local news powerhouse for the nation.

“By harnessing this newsgathering and production network, we will ensure Wales has a news service which rivals the best of what is available around the world today.”

Northcliffe Media MD Michael Pelosi said: “As publishers of a number of leading newspaper titles and websites in Wales, we are excited about the prospect of breathing new life into the nation’s news service, delving deeper to provide enriched content for the people of Wales.”

Newsquest regional MD for Wales Gavin Steacy said: “This is a fabulous opportunity to glue together the major newsgathering forces in Wales to produce a powerful information service for the people of Wales.”

Tindle’s group MD Brian Doel added: “With our strong newspaper footprint across Wales, we look forward to working with our partners and using our already excellent newspaper and internet resources to deliver an enhanced news service for Wales.”

  • Northern Irish media group UTV has announced it is bidding for the North-East pilot. The company, which is part of the Wales consortium with NWN Media, is going up against ITV/ITN and a group including Trinity Mirror and the Press Association.
  • Comments

    Gulfman (22/12/2009 10:29:46)
    Hmmm…UTV battles like mad to prevent an IFNC in its own back yard – but now wants to gobble up Wales and the North East. They should instead concentrate on improving their service in Northern Ireland by reinstating lunchtime bulletins and proper weekend news coverage – and doing proper current affairs again.