Salford front runner in BBC 'North Project'

The BBC Governors have today given the go ahead for the corporation's
North Project team to treat Salford as the leading bidder in principle.

The proposals would see BBC Sport, Radio Five Live, New Media, Research and Development along with CBBC and Children's Learning relocate from London.

However the BBC have stressed that this move is dependent on
further outstanding issues being resolved.

A BBC spokeswoman told Press Gazette: “We are treating them [Salford] as
the leading bidder, in principle, and are going to conduct further discussion
with them on an exclusive basis with a view to them being confirmed as the
preferred bidder but that is providing that these outstanding issues can be
resolved within the limited period of exclusivity.”

The governors have always said that any decision on a move
will be based on whether it offers value for money for licence fee payers and
the affordability of the project.

The BBC say that the affordability of the project cannot be
determined until they have a licence fee settlement, which is due to be
announced later this year.

The spokeswoman said: “With value for money, the step that
we’ve taken today is not to say that the value for money decision has been
taken, work on that is continuing. What today’s statement is about is looking
at the two sites and coming to a view on a preferred bidder.

There is still work to be done on value for money and we
won’t be able to take a view on affordability until the licence fee settlement
is announced.”

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