Bbc licence fee may not last but shake-up should have gone further, say critics _ daily mail online

Batting off ‘hysterical speculation’, Culture Secretary John Whittingdale launched a White Paper that secured the corporation’s future for the next 11 years.

Marking a step towards subscription funding, viewers will now have to pay for some content and there will be a trial of new ‘top-up’ services to existing programmes.

David Elstein, a former Channel 5 and BSkyB executive who is now chairman of Open Democracy, said the White Paper felt like a ‘big victory’ for the BBC because it largely maintained the status quo.

Lord Grade, the former ITV and BBC chairman, said there would be ‘disappointment’ in the private sector that the BBC hadn’t been ‘reduced in scope and size’.

The Culture Secretary also came under fire from BBC bosses and stars over plans for ministers to appoint six out of 14 members of a new governing board to replace the discredited BBC Trust.


Baked chicken fingers with panko BBC director general Lord Hall said the balance of appointments could threaten the corporation’s independence. Baked chicken strips healthy The moves outlined yesterday include:

At the heart of the proposals is a demand that the BBC becomes more distinctive and produce ‘innovative, ambitious, inspirational and bold’ shows.

TV bosses come under fire for continuing to broadcast long-running daytime shows such as Homes Under the Hammer, now in its 20th series, and Bargain Hunt, now in its 43rd.

The creation of subscription content marks a watershed moment for the BBC. Shake n bake chicken tenders It is likely to involve, initially, paid-for access to the BBC’s vast archive.

Although a first, tentative step towards subscription funding, the document explicitly states that subscription marks a move towards a ‘more sustainable funding model in the longer term’.

It adds: ‘Changes in the viewing habits of audiences and the proliferation of devices, platforms and services mean that it is increasingly difficult for the licence fee to remain fit-for-purpose in the modern media age.’

The BBC board, and regulation by Ofcom, will replace the BBC Trust which was savaged over its handling of payoffs to managers and a series of scandals.

But Lord Hall said it was ‘vital’ to preserve the BBC’s independence and called for the chairman and deputy chairman to be selected via an independent public appointments process.

Asked on the BBC’s Six O’Clock News last night if the corporation had escaped tougher measures in the reforms, Lord Hall denied the BBC had ‘got away with it’.

Ofcom will have wide powers to investigate ‘any aspect of BBC services’, and will deal with any complaints not resolved by the BBC itself. Spicy baked chicken tenders It will also monitor accuracy and impartiality and will be able to issue fines or stop the BBC making changes it opposes.

Jonathan Isaby, of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said: ‘It is regrettable that the Government has ducked the opportunity for substantial reform of the regressive and arcane TV licence fee.’

He called the charge a ‘throwback’ , saying the time had come for a ‘fairer funding model fit for the 21st century’. How to make chicken fingers batter Great British Bake Off host Sue Perkins accused ministers of trying to turn the BBC into its ‘own private megaphone’.

They also want the BBC to start selling access to iPlayer to foreign viewers overseas, amid concerns that tens of millions of people are simply using straightforward hacks to access the service for free.

The ‘loophole’ which means anyone in the UK can watch catch-up TV on iPlayer without paying the licence fee is also going to close, making anyone accessing the programmes online subject to the same rules as traditional television viewers.

The warning comes after Radio 1 was found to have played one song, Cake By the Ocean by American band DNCE, 100 times over 30 days. The White Paper said that much of the ‘talk time’ on Radio 1 during peak hours was ‘similar to that found on commercial stations’, and called for more ‘ambition to enrich the market and maximise the public value’ offered.

A survey found that more than 40 per cent of Radio 1 listeners under 25 said output was ‘quite similar’ to pop stations like Capital and Absolute, with nearly one in three saying the same about Radio 2. How to make chicken strips crispy The report also said that public service requirements are being ‘pushed to the margins of the schedule’, with Radio 1 documentaries often aired late in the evening.

She wrote on Twitter: ‘I’d happily hog-tie and paddle Mr Whittingdale for what he has done – only I suspect he’d rather enjoy it.’ Former BBC Trust boss Michael Lyons even claimed the BBC had ‘lost impartiality’ as a result of the review and journalists had carried out some ‘quite extraordinary attacks’ on Jeremy Corbyn in the run-up to Charter review.

But Thick of It writer Armando Iannucci praised the proposals: ‘No cuts to BBC budget, no interference in schedules, and majority on Board not appointed by government. Cane’s chicken fingers calories This is good to hear.’

BBC sources rejected the suggestion shows lacked distinctiveness and pointed out making original programming was difficult with constrained budgets.

One of the highest earners: Newsreader Fiona Bruce (pictured left). Chris Evans (right) admitted that he and his fellow stars earn ‘too much money’

And when asked about the issue of taxpayer-funded salaries yesterday morning, Evans said: ‘People who do what I do for a living compared to people in the real world get paid too much money.’

Yesterday Mr Whittingdale announced that the BBC must publish the salaries of all its talent paid over £450,000 – the salary of Director-General Lord Hall.

It is thought that nine stars, including 34-year-old Evans, are currently paid more than this figure, with Eurovision host Graham Norton, Match of the Day presenter Gary Lineker and news anchor Fiona Bruce all thought to qualify.