BBC will air rivals’ shows as part of DG’s creative ‘revolution’

BBC boss Tony Hall has promised a “revolution” in the way the corporation is run and pledged to open it up to competition.

The director-general wants an overhaul of programme-making at the corporation which would see it creating shows for rivals and screening more shows made by competitors on its channels.

Lord Hall praised the “entrepreneurial spirit” of the early days of Hollywood and said he wanted to bring that to the BBC.

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He said: “We are going to go further than we ever have done before in opening the BBC to more competition, a revolution in the way we look at competition in the BBC”.

The director-general said the current system, which guarantees half of all BBC TV production to in-house teams, had produced “top quality” shows but needed to change. Speaking at a seminar at City University in central London, he said it was producing an “increasingly distorted market” which was “squeezing out creativity”.

Mr Hall said he wants new rules laid down in the next BBC charter, which is up for renewal in 2016, that creates a level playing field but he said the BBC will always be a programme maker.

He said: “It would be extremely odd to stop the BBC, one of the world’s great programme makers, from making programmes.”

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He suggested he would allow BBC staff to make programmes for other broadcasters as well as open up the corporation more to independent producers. He also said he had “real confidence” in the licence fee and it remained the best way of funding the BBC.

Alternatives to the traditional funding method have been proposed by politicians and former corporation staff in the run-up to the renewal of its charter.

In May, Culture Secretary Sajid Javid said “everything” would be looked at, including licence fees and governance structures, when negotiations get under way.

Senior Tories have previously called the compulsory annual charge made to viewers - currently frozen at £145.50 a year - out of date.