Wednesday, July 21, 2010

BBC Trust blows 3m on new HQ

Chris Gourlay and Steven Swinford & , : {}

THE BBC watchdog obliged for ensuring that looseness fee-payers get worth for income has outlayed �3.2m on new domicile after rejecting space in the corporations buildings.

The BBC Trust sealed a �2.2m, eight-year franchise for the initial construction of a converted Edwardian palace in executive London last month to residence the 60 staff. It outlayed a serve �1m on refurbishment, together with �250,000 on interior designers, plan government and removals, and �400,000 on wise out the building.

The certitude was formerly housed in an additional building, to one side dual BBC departments. When the offices were sold, it insisted that it indispensable earthy subdivision to strengthen the independence.

The certitude has sealed the franchise even though the really life is underneath threat. Ben Bradshaw, the enlightenment secretary, has criticised it for being a cheerleader of the BBC. Earlier this month the Tories affianced to annul it if they won the ubiquitous election.

Related LinksRadio 2 contingency move behind listeners over 65BBC blows millions on Yentob follies

On Tuesday the BBC will face serve annoyance as the National Audit Office (NAO) publishes a rarely vicious inform on the corporations �813m revamp of Broadcasting House in executive London. It is approaching to item how the plan is using dual years late and �20m over budget.

Jeremy Hunt, the shade enlightenment secretary, said: This is a silly incident and one that is costing looseness fee- payers nonetheless some-more money. The BBC Trust is ostensible to safeguard we get worth for money, something that has obviously not happened here.

What with this and reports of large overspending on buildings, the total of the BBC needs to get a grip.

The certitude was formerly housed in Marylebone High Street, with BBC London and BBC Training. The offices were sole last October, and the dual alternative departments changed in to bureau space at Broadcasting House and White City. The certitude argued that it indispensable the own offices to be indeed eccentric of the BBC. It looked at twelve properties in executive London prior to settling on 180 Great Portland Street, a five-minute travel from Broadcasting House.

Land Registry papers exhibit that the certitude is profitable Google, that owns the offices, �346,248 a year in rent. It perceived the initial twenty-one months free. Although the skill was renovated in Aug 2007, the certitude motionless to enter upon on a �1m renovate of the own.

It hired Overbury, an interior pattern company, to emanate a brightly phony look. In the accepting a array of projectors, discreetly built in to the ceiling, perform visitors with a video wall of live BBC channels.

A black-and-white imitation of Broadcasting House covers an complete wall, whilst an additional is flashy in engineer stripes. A loll area is furnished with splendid blue sofas and bookshelf-themed wallpaper.

The designers have additionally since the bureau a retro theme, with very old radios and a gramophone. Sir Michael Lyons, the authority of the trust, has a soundproofed bureau for trusted conversations.

According to a leaflet from Knight Frank, the estate agent, the construction is accomplished to the excellent details.

Gerry Morrissey, ubiquitous cabinet member of Bectu, the media traffic union, Lyons in the new offices last month, before long after the BBC changed in. It was spotless; you could see the offices were all new, he said. Bearing in mind the volume being outlayed on Broadcasting House, could the certitude not have had a construction there?

Why would they need to rent a place in executive London? Theyre ostensible to be about worth for money.

Don Foster, the Liberal Democrat enlightenment spokesman, said: The earthy place of the trusts offices is irrelevant. Choosing a some-more costly choice in an try to show that they are independent, when they are not, is ludicrous. What we need is a indeed eccentric regulator of the BBC.

A mouthpiece for the certitude pronounced the sale of the Marylebone bureau had saved taxpayers money. She added: It has regularly been a enterprise to apart the certitude from alternative tools of the BBC and it was felt that the majority befitting choice would be to be physically apart also.

This weeks NAO inform will review the redevelopment of Broadcasting House and the BBCs new Scottish domicile at Pacific Quay, Glasgow. It will additionally see at the costs of the BBCs Media City in Salford, Manchester.

Broadcasting House not long ago captivated critique when papers expelled underneath leisure of report manners suggested that �3.9m of looseness fee-payers income had been earmarked for an humanities jubilee of the building, together with �25,000 to fly a remotecontrolled helicopter over it for dual minutes, a �1.65m articulate piazza featuring an cast of the world, with built-in waterproof speakers, and �70,000 to sketch builders and architects concerned in the work.


Post a Comment