Newly appointed head of the ITV net Marcus Plantin has added another key player to his senior team by naming Vernon Lawrence controller of drama and entertainment.

The appointment combines two of ITV’s most important portfolios under a single controller.

Plantin said he wants to ensure that writer-led programs are “under the control of a very experienced practitioner.”

Lawrence, 52, started his career with BBC Radio in 1959 and moved to BBC TV in 1965. In 1974, he moved to Yorkshire TV as exec producer of Light Entertainment.

Currently controller of entertainment at Yorkshire, Lawrence has been responsible for some of the network’s biggest comedy successes, including “The Darling Buds of May,””A Bit of A Do” and “The New Statesman.” He is a two-time BAFTA nominee and has won an Intl. Emmy.

Lawrence is expected to appoint two deputies to look after drama and entertainment separately.

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