David Dimbleby: BBC needs to return to two channel television service

The BBC needs to slash the number of television channels it broadcasts according to broadcaster David Dimbleby.

The Question Time host said the corporation needed to redefine its remit.

Speaking on the Richard Bacon radio show on BBC Five Live, Dimbleby claimed the BBC may be too powerful for its own good.

He said: "I do think the BBC needs to pull back a bit from some of the things it does, maybe cut back a bit on its number of television channels."

He said programmes on BBC4 were being made "on a shoestring" and the channel should be merged with BBC2.

He said: "Cut out some of the gardening and cookery and all that on BBC2 and turn it back into a quality thing it was meant to be and then you have two big channels, one and two".

His comments echo those of former BBC news chief Roger Mosey who said earlier this month that the corporation should get a smaller slice of the licence fee to promote competition and give the public wider choice.

Writing in The Times, Mosey said that if more bids from commercial organisations were open to funding from the licence fee, it might ''enrich the nation''.

Mosey said the corporation faced widespread competition in network television, but its market share of 70 percent of all news consumption on both TV and radio was something that ''even long-term loyalists find uncomfortable''.

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