Channel 4 has revealed that it is in advanced negotiations with the owners of the historic Majestic building in Leeds city centre over plans to use the site as its National HQ.
If the talks with Rushbond Group are successful, the broadcaster will lease over 25,000 square feet of space on the third, fourth and fifth floors of the building, which will be home to Channel 4 roles from across the organisation as well as a major hub for Channel 4 News.
The Majestic building, a former cinema and nightclub which overlooks the City Square and Leeds railway station, is being turned into high quality office space five years on from a fire which badly damaged the building in 2014.
It has long been considered as a possible site for the Channel 4 HQ, along with the city's South Bank, after the broadcaster chose the Leeds City Region ahead of rival bids from Greater Manchester and Birmingham.
Construction work begins on £40m redevelopment of Leeds city centre landmark
Officials hope to move into the building in the second half of 2020, but between now and then Channel 4 hopes to lease space in the West Gate development on Grace Street in Leeds City Centre. Staff will begin to move there from September.
According to Channel 4 executives, the new National HQ in the Majestic will accommodate staff from a range of different departments, including the Managing Director, Nations & Regions, programme commissioners and the new Digital Creative Unit, which produces and commissions content to reach audiences on digital and social platforms.
Channel 4 News will also base their news hub in the building and will regularly co-anchor the programme from a new studio which will be built within the space.
Jonathan Allan, Channel 4’s Chief Commercial Officer said: “Leeds offered a wealth of potential locations for our National HQ but the Majestic really stood out as an iconic building which will put Channel 4 at the heart of the city centre.
"It’s an incredibly impressive redevelopment and offers the right mix of location, connectivity and space for our organisation and great facilities for our staff and our partners in the industry.”
Councillor Judith Blake, leader of Leeds City Council said: “The Majestic building is an iconic Leeds landmark, and will be a fantastic location for Channel 4 when they make their move to the city. This is another exciting step forward in the partnership with Channel 4.
"We are already seeing hugely positive effects since the announcement of their headquarters, as companies within the sector see Leeds in a new light and look to put down their own roots. We look forward to welcoming Channel 4 staff to the city later in the year, and continuing to see growth in this already flourishing sector and beyond.”
Roger Marsh, who chairs the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership, which promotes economic growth in West Yorkshire, said: “What a great landmark location for Channel 4’s new National HQ. The prominence of Majestic makes a major statement and provides a resounding vote of confidence in Leeds and of the wider City Region.
"Channel 4 couldn’t be better placed for attracting staff from across the region and making use of the transport links out to our diverse communities, towns and cities.”