The London Evening Standard has won the bid to run a local TV station for the capital.
Media regulator Ofcom has announced that the ESTV has beaten off competition from four rival bidders, including a consortium of regional press publishers, to be awarded the local TV licence for London.
The move means Standard journalists will be involved in content creation for the new channel called London Live, which aims to go live in September this year.
It is the latest announcement of licence awards by Ofcom for the first 19 areas to start-up local TV stations, as part of the government’s plans to roll it out nationally.
A studio for the TV station will be created in the Standard’s newsroom and the channel aims to broadcast for 18 hours each day, rising to 24 if there is sufficient audience demand.
The TV channel will have access to various resources at the Evening Standard, including content from the 120-strong editorial team, along with advertising sales and finance, legal, HR and IT support, while it will also be promoted in the newspaper.
The application by ESTV states: “London Live, with the financial backing of the Lebedevs and editorial and commercial resources of The London Evening Standard (and the Independent), will have the ability to rapidly develop a news and current affairs-led local London television service, delivering 100pc London content, which will engage and interact with London’s diverse audiences.”
It aims to provide rolling live coverage of news at peak times from its studio with live reporting from across London, and news headlines will be broadcast on the half-hour throughout the day.
A daily listing of the London Live programme schedule will be printed in the Standard’s TV pages and the paper’s 400 drop-points around London will be turned into “interactive hubs” for publicising London Live debates and content.
Video content for the channel will be produced by Standard journalists, along with mobile video journalists who will be recruited and the channel will also run a London Live film school each year for residents in the capital.
Its application says that ESTV is wholly owned by Lebedev Holdings Limited and will operate alongside its sister companies, the Evening Standard Limited and Independent Print Limited.