LONDON — Richard Eyre, managing director of Capital Radio, has been named the new chief executive of the ITV Network.

His appointment to the top administrative job at the U.K.’s most watched web is likely to pave the way for Granada exec David Liddiment to become ITV’s new director of programs.

Marcus Plantin, who currently fills both functions as network director, will be stepping down in the fall.

Eyre commented, “This is a unique challenge. There are enormous opportunities for ITV in the period ahead to build on its position as this country’s most popular channel.”

ITV chairman Leslie Hill said, “This appointment is an important step forward for ITV in the strategic management of the network in an increasingly competitive environment. The ITV schedule is supported by the largest program investment of any single channel in Europe. Our objective is to give the best possible service to viewers and advertisers in order to maintain our competitive advantage.”

Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more