The government is giving broadcasters including Channel 4 and ITV an extra £60m to help them make more homegrown children’s TV.
The money will be targeted at commercial channels to help them compete with BBC children’s TV shows.
The investment has been welcomed by creators in the field who have previously stated that programme-makers ‘desperately need more support.’
The £60m pot will be spent over three years and will come from the 2010 licence fee settlement.
Culture Secretary Karen Bradley said it would give the children’s TV sector “the boost it needs to create innovative content for a wider audience that would otherwise not be made.”
The money will be available for programmes shown by commercial public service broadcasters – including ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5 – as well as other ‘free and widely available’ channels and streaming services, and potentially other online platforms.
Anne Wood, who leads the Save Kids’ Content UK campaign, said she was deeply grateful for the move.
“It shows the government’s awareness of the issue and the importance of children’s television culture in this country,” she said.
“We in the children’s production sector have never had such difficult times raising finance. We desperately need more support.”
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport said the fund could be used to pay for up to 50 percent of the production and distribution costs of original TV shows.
Programmes from new and diverse backgrounds and those made in the nations and regions will be a ‘particular focus,’ it said.