BBC to pump extra £34m into next 3 years of kids programmes and services

Last week the BBC announced it will be pushing an additional £34m over the next three years into children’s programmes, content and related services.

The Corporation is hailing it as the biggest investment in children’s TV in a generation.

While the majority of the budget will continue to be spent on the two flagship TV channels – CBBC and CBeebies – the extra money will also be used to develop the BBC Children’s online offerings.

The BBC is mandated to continue to provide free-to-air television channels for children, which is why CBBC and CBeebies will remain on Freeview and similar digital platforms.

The budget will be spent on:

  • Outstanding content
  • Multi-platform availability
  • Interactive content

The BBC states it will focus on a smaller number of ‘stand-out titles’ when commissioning new TV programmes and recommissioning existing ones.

This suggest a fewer number of programmes but with much more year-round content associated with them.

Content will be delivered not just via TV, but increasingly online and through mobile apps, including iPlayer Kids and the channel tablet/phone apps.

Hand-in-hand with this comes interactivity which will allow kids to create, connect and share content.

Alice Webb, director of Children’s, said, “Our audience is rapidly changing and now more than ever we need to keep up. We’re home to the most popular kids TV channels in the UK, but as our audience increasingly move online it’s our job to stay relevant, inspiring and engaging them on whichever platform they choose. Today’s announcement means that whilst we’ll continue to make exceptional, distinctive public service UK children’s content across all of our platforms, we’ll also be able to develop a more personal online service that meets the evolving needs of our audience.”

There’s a lot of generic corporate speak going on in this announcement, but hopefully we’ll get to see what comes of it over the coming months.