Yesterday it was reported that the BBC was considering shutting BBC Three down in order to focus further on BBC Four and make some further savings, however despite this being true, it was not BBC Four that the broadcaster was trying to help by doing so, with the BBC director-general, Tony Hall stating that the channel will be shut down in order to save a total of £50 million a year, with £30 million of that going back to BBC One.
BBC Three will cease broadcasting and will become an iPlayer only channel by 2015, with the extra bandwidth being used to extend CBBC by an hour a night, as well as provide for the new BBC One +1 service.
Hall said in the broadcasters press statement that: “I believe it’s the right thing to do: young audiences – the BBC Three audience – are the most mobile and ready to move to an online world. 25 per cent of viewing by 16-24 year olds is to catch-up or other screens and over the next few years we expect that to reach 40 per cent.”
“I am determined to ensure we embrace the new opportunities technology gives us – and match that with programming of the highest quality that is simply the best in the world.” Hall continued to state.
This marks the first time in history that the BBC has shut down a channel, however it at the moment it is simply a proposal that must go through the BBC Trust before it can officially go ahead, so the whole proposal could be out ruled much like the Trust did with BBC Radio 6 four years ago.