Chris Patten, chairmen of the BBC Trust, has confirmed that BBC 4 will not close as part of a cost-cutting exercise that will see the British public broadcaster make 20% spending cuts over the next few years. In an interview with the Observer, Patten called rumours that the arts and culture channel faced the axe “bizarre”, adding that it was possible to run the BBC on £3.5 billion (€4 billion) a year.
The Trust, which oversees spending at the public broadcaster, will reveal proposals on how it will achieve spending cuts next month, which will be followed by a period of consultation. Patten said half of the savings are likely to be made through efficiencies, with the greatest protection offered to drama, children’s and news programming. Cuts in sport and entertainment are likely, he said.