BBC and Channel 4 trade blows over Bake Off

The Great British Bake Off move has sparked a public row between the BBC and Channel 4.

James Purnell, the BBC’s director of strategy, told the Royal Television Society conference in London that viewers were “extremely saddened that they’re not going to have something they absolutely love” with the show moving to Channel 4.

“You’re going to have your own take on it, but I think something really, really precious will be lost,” he said, adding that Channel 4 had “given ammunition to the people who want to privatise Channel 4″.

But Jay Hunt, Channel 4′s chief creative officer, hit back, telling him that C4 did not poach Bake Off.

The relationship between the BBC and the show’s creators, Love Productions, is said to have deteriorated over budget rows and accusations that the corporation had used its format for other shows.

“I understand how painful it is to lose franchises, but let’s be utterly clear: this is an independent producer who, after three years of an increasingly dysfunctional relationship, decided they would no longer make the show for you,” the Channel 4 boss said.

“At that point, that franchise was in the market. I appreciate that’s very painful and if I was sitting at the BBC, I would be thinking quite long and hard about how that situation had arisen. But that is what happened.”

The row comes after Mary Berry announced she would be following in the footsteps of Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc and staying at the BBC. Paul Hollywood is moving to Channel 4.

More in this Section

Standing ovation sees Strictly Come Dancing couple surge up leaderboardStanding ovation sees Strictly Come Dancing couple surge up leaderboard

Karim Zeroual ‘off the chart’ on StrictlyKarim Zeroual ‘off the chart’ on Strictly

Jane Fonda returns to civil disobedience over climate changeJane Fonda returns to civil disobedience over climate change

The Circle champion Paddy Smyth: I hope my father was looking down on winThe Circle champion Paddy Smyth: I hope my father was looking down on win


Lifestyle

These are the nail hues to choose this season, says Katie Wright.Perfectly polished: 5 autumn/winter nail trends you’ll actually want to wear

This early 19th-century table is one of a number of Irish lots at Sotheby’s Style, Furniture and Ceramics sale in New York on Thursday (October 24).Irish lots poised to add bite to Big Apple sale

Something for all at Hegarty’s auction in Bandon, says Des O’SullivanSomething for all at Hegarty’s auction in Bandon

Des O’Sullivan gives a preview of the Irish selection on offer at two sales in DublinPreview of the Irish selection on offer at two sales in Dublin

More From The Irish Examiner