Government Minister talks about Local TV

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Culture and the Digital Economy Minister, Ed Vaizey, speaking to Bay TV

2 October 2015

Ed Vaizey says Local TV “fills a gap” and that the Government will “see what else they can do to help” the local TV sector.

Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy, Ed Vaizey, has spoken about the progress of local TV when he was asked interviewed by Nathan Griffiths of Bay TV Liverpool.

Mr Vaizey said: “I think they are very pioneering stations… I think they fill a gap. People are hungry for local news – the kind of attention to stories that wouldn’t necessarily get covered on the regional news which spreads its net too widely perhaps.”

He went on to say that the Government will look at how the sector can be further supported: “I continue to talk to the leaders of local television about what else we can do to support them as they grow. This is initially the first couple of years. Once we’ve got a lot of stations established we can look again and see what else we can do to help.”

Local TV Network Chair, Chris Johnson said: “It’s encouraging to hear Ed Vaizey speaking positively about Local TV and the way that it has had filled a gap in the market.

“As the Minister observes, Local TV is ‘pioneering’ and still in its early stages. But it’s gratifying to hear Ed Vaizey recognise that local stations are already a hit with viewers and performing a vital service in covering stories and events that would often otherwise go unreported.

“The Local TV Network held a meeting with Mr Vaizey recently and we are looking forward to working closely with him – as he suggests in this interview – to see what more can be done to further develop and enhance local television in the UK.”

See video here.

Meanwhile, local television in the UK is about to celebrate an important milestone.

The second anniversary the first station being launched – Estuary TV in North Lincolnshire – will be celebrated in November 2015.

To date a total of 20 stations have gone on air, broadcasting on Freeview Channel 8 in England and N. Ireland and Channel 23 in Scotland and Wales. Some stations are also available via Virgin Media Channel 157 and Sky Channel 117.