Archant's Mustard and Made In win local TV franchises

Archant’s joint venture Mustard has been awarded a licence by Ofcom to run a new local TV channel based in Norwich.

Ofcom also announced today that Made In Bristol and Made in Cardiff have won the franchise for local TV stations in those cities.

Made In Bristol's station manager Martin Winter is a director of South West News Service and ex-assistant news editor of the Daily Mail.

Made In Television has also applied for local TV licences in Belfast, Birmingham, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Mancester and Newcastle and is chaired by former Sky executive and Top-up TV co-founder Ian West.

Last week it was announced that The Latest had won the local TV franchise in Brighton and Lincolnshire Living was to run the station in Grimsby.

Some 57 applications have been made for the first tranche of 20 local TV sations around the UK.

Mustard said its news bulletins will “devote roughly five times as much airtime to Norwich focused news each weekday than the existing coverage provided by BBC East and ITV Anglia”.

Its flagship magazine programme, The Mustard Show, will add over three hours per week of Norwich-related programming to the Freeview schedule, it added.

Mustard will also air original factual, entertainment and documentary programming, as well as events, arts and sports coverage.

It is expected to begin broadcasting in autumn 2013 on channel 8 and will be on air from 6am to midnight seven days a week

Mustard Digital, the online web TV platform will launch in January 2013.

Johnny Hustler

Mustard chairman and Archant Anglia managing director Jonny Hustler said: “We are delighted to have been given this opportunity to extend the valuable service we have been providing to the people of Norwich and Norfolk for the past 160 years through our printed and digital publications such as the EDP and Evening News.

“We look forward to producing a station which will highlight a wide range of local issues, stimulate well-informed debate and motivate local people to engage.”

Archant is one of only a handful of regional newspaper groups to express interest in the local TV scheme.

Publishers Archant and Tindle have also teamed up in a bid to secure a local TV licence in London, with a third regional publisher, Trinity Mirror, signed up as a partner.

The Lebedev family, which publishes The Independent newspapers and Evening Standards newspapers, are behind London Live.

It proposes to draw on the resources of the Standard to launch a station providing Londoners with news, current affairs, comment, what's on and community-focused programming.

Fiona Ryder

Commenting on today’s announcement, Mustard managing director Fiona Ryder commented: “Our vision is for Mustard to be seen as a community asset: a local broadcast service that reflects life and champions community concerns and gives viewers a new voice. We will partner with academic institutions, local businesses and production companies to ensure that Mustard is an authentic local service made by and for the people of Norwich.

“As part of Archant, one of the UK’s largest independently owned regional media groups, with its group head office in Norwich, Mustard is uniquely positioned to sustain a local commercial television service for the city and the surrounding area.

“It will draw on its long-established media resources, especially in the delivery of high-quality journalism across a range of media channels, commercial sales, sponsorship and back office support.”

Made in Bristol, meanwhile, will broadcast to 330,000 households on Freeview channel 8 and will be on air by next summer.

Made in Bristol is a collaboration between Made Television Ltd – which is applying for 11 licences across the country – and the Bristol-based news agency South West News Service (SWNS).

The station will broadcast 24 hours a day and will feature local news, entertainment, information and lifestyle programming.

Director Martin Winter said: “Local TV will allow all aspects of life in Bristol to be showcased and provide a massive commercial boost to local businesses looking to engage with the local community.

"Local businesses deserve to have local TV as their chance to advertise and compete with national brands.

"We want to be as inclusive as possible and strengthen the local media in Bristol. It is our intention to embrace and co-operate wherever we can."

The station will feature hourly news bulletins, a 30-minute evening news programme and a daily magazine show with local features and debates.

 

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