16 Apr 2018
Broadcaster and journalist Stuart Cosgrove has been announced as chairman of the board tasked with Glasgow’s bid to host Channel 4’s new national headquarters.
Cosgrove has previously worked with Channel 4 as its first controller of arts and entertainment, and as head of programmes (nations and regions). He has also previously served as chairman of the government’s digital media strategy board, on behalf of Scottish Enterprise.
Glasgow City Council launched the city’s bid last month after Channel 4 announced plans to move its main base out of London as part of a major restructuring plan. The bid is supported by the Scottish Government, which has identified the screen production industry as a key growth sector for the city, which is already home to BBC Scotland and STV. Cosgrove has suggested that the headquarters could create as many as 600 jobs for the city as well as major commissioning powers for new programmes.
Glasgow City Council leader Susan Aitken has welcomed Cosgrove’s appointment to the role, commenting, “Both this city and the channel are clearly close to his heart – and there is nobody who understands better how the two can complement each other.”
Cosgrove himself has also expressed his happiness at being appointed to the role, commenting: “Channel 4 and Glasgow are made for one another; the same values and qualities that typify Glasgow are ingrained in the culture and identity of Channel 4.
“They are bold and provocative, with real heart – and they both attract and celebrate innovative and diverse people.”
Cosgrove has also suggested that Glasgow’s famously irreverent sense of humour would make the city an excellent home for Channel 4, saying, “Channel 4 is a broadcaster for the whole of the UK, but Glasgow curiously meets all of the key values that it represents: innovations, and the idea of having a cheeky attitude, and Glasgow has them in spades.
“You just have to think of that iconic image of the statue outside the Glasgow Museum of Modern Art with the traffic cone on its head – it’s a very irreverent statement, but it chimes with the Channel 4 brand values.”
David Smith, Scottish representative for industry body Pact, said, “Glasgow is part of Channel 4’s DNA. The city has a strong and diverse television culture, it is home to the producers of so many well-loved Channel 4 brands and the channel has had a base here since 1991.
"Moving the channel’s nation HQ to Glasgow would be the clearest possible confirmation that Channel 4 is for all the UK.”