The BBC’s Director-General has told an audience at MediaCity the corporation will not be complacent in its commitment to Salford.
Speaking at an event to mark ten years of the BBC at MediaCity, Tim Davie praised local partners, including Salford City Council and Salford University, for helping to “build a brilliant, sustainable site where people want to work and invest; learn and live”.
The BBC boss also used his visit to Salford to commend North West Tonight weather presenter Owain Wyn Evans, who raised more than £3m for Children in Need with his 24-hour drumathon, which had “captured the imagination of the nation”.
BBC Director-General Tim Davie, said:
“What we have achieved in Salford over the past decade – with our partners from across the city and the region – has been remarkable.
“The BBC at MediaCity hasn’t just thrived; it has grown into a major regional and national success story. And it has proved just what the BBC can do to support the creative industries around the country.”
Friday’s Children in Need appeal show will be broadcast from MediaCity and next month the annual Sports Personality of the Year ceremony will come live from the Salford studios.
Ten years on from the opening of the BBC’s three buildings at MediaCity the corporation now has 4,000 staff based on site, double the figure from 2011.
The Director General said the Corporation had delivered on its commitment to “build something special” in Salford.
Earlier this year a KPMG report found the BBC had helped create a “creative and digital cluster”, with employment in the creative sector increasing by 142% and the number of creative businesses increasing by 70% between 2010 and 2019.
Mr Davie said the BBC wanted to do more from Salford and across the North of England as part of the ambitious Across the UK plan, announced earlier this year, which will see at least an extra £700m cumulatively across the UK by 2027/28.
This will include an increased presence for Radio 3 and 50% of 6 Music in Salford, alongside more news teams based in MediaCity. From February next year, business updates on the Today programme will be broadcast live from Quay House.
Salford City Mayor, Paul Dennett, also attended the event and praised the positive economic and creative impact the BBC had brought to the local area over the last ten years.
He thanked the corporation for “fundamentally transforming how Salford is perceived by people and investors”.
Salford City Mayor, Paul Dennett, said:
“The relocation of the BBC to Salford has had a profound and lasting impact on our city and local economy. In the last decade Salford’s population has grown by almost 27,000, growth of 12%, well above GM and national comparators.
“Business growth has been extraordinary, over 68%, which again is well above comparators. We’ve enjoyed significant employment growth of 25,000 additional jobs -plus 20% – again well above GM and national employment growth.
“Economic output in the city, measured by £GVA, has increased substantially by £1.7 billion, an increase of almost one third, plus 30%, in the size of the local economy.
“The BBC has helped to fundamentally transform how Salford is perceived by people and investors.
“We have swapped dock workers for media makers, shipped goods for streamed content, but what drives us remains the same. The vision to make the impossible, possible. And that means we don’t just look back on history. We continue to live it.”