You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Chris Patten tapped to head BBC Trust

Pubcaster seeks clear route through change

LONDON — Chris Patten, the last British governor of Hong Kong and a former chairman of the U.K’s right-of-center Conservative Party, is expected to be appointed chair of the BBC Trust next week.

The appointment of Patten, who is 66, needs to be approved by the Prime Minister, David Cameron, who is likely to give his consent.

Patten’s name was one of three forwarded to U.K. media minister Jeremy Hunt earlier this week.

The others were the former editor of the Financial Times, Richard Lambert; and Patricia Hodgson, who used to head the Independent Television Commission, a watchdog organization.

But reports in local media suggest that Hunt told Cameron that Patten, regarded as being on the liberal wing of the Conservative Party, was “head and shoulders” above the other candidates.

Patten will succeed Sir Michael Lyons, whose days were numbered when the Conservative-led coalition government came to power in Blighty last May.

Lyons had been appointed by ex-Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

Patten will take over the leadership of the Corp’s sovereign body at a hugely sensitive time for the BBC as it implements big cuts to its U.K. and parts of its overseas activities including the World Service.

While the Trust chairman has no executive responsibilities at the BBC, the job involves shaping the pubcaster’s overall strategy and appointing the BBC director-general who runs the Corp on a day-to-day basis.

He also has to hold management to account in the interests of U.K. license fee payers.

Patten will need to forge a good working relationship with Mark Thompson, the BBC director-general, who has indicated that he wants to stay at the Corp despite the challenge of leading a slimmed-down organization fit for an age of austerity.

More TV

  • TV Ratings: Winter Olympics Slide Week-to-Week

    TV Ratings: Winter Olympics Slide Week-to-Week on Thursday

    LONDON — Chris Patten, the last British governor of Hong Kong and a former chairman of the U.K’s right-of-center Conservative Party, is expected to be appointed chair of the BBC Trust next week. The appointment of Patten, who is 66, needs to be approved by the Prime Minister, David Cameron, who is likely to give […]

  • At NBC Sports, the 'Highlights Factory'

    At NBC Sports, the 'Highlights Factory' Takes Olympics to New Screens

    LONDON — Chris Patten, the last British governor of Hong Kong and a former chairman of the U.K’s right-of-center Conservative Party, is expected to be appointed chair of the BBC Trust next week. The appointment of Patten, who is 66, needs to be approved by the Prime Minister, David Cameron, who is likely to give […]

  • BBC Outlines Plan to Become ‘The

    BBC Outlines Plan to Become ‘The Best Place for Women to Work’

    LONDON — Chris Patten, the last British governor of Hong Kong and a former chairman of the U.K’s right-of-center Conservative Party, is expected to be appointed chair of the BBC Trust next week. The appointment of Patten, who is 66, needs to be approved by the Prime Minister, David Cameron, who is likely to give […]

  • Mary J Blige Walk of Fame

    Mary J. Blige, Common, Sufjan Stevens, More to Perform at Academy Awards

    LONDON — Chris Patten, the last British governor of Hong Kong and a former chairman of the U.K’s right-of-center Conservative Party, is expected to be appointed chair of the BBC Trust next week. The appointment of Patten, who is 66, needs to be approved by the Prime Minister, David Cameron, who is likely to give […]

  • Stephen Fry Reveals He Has Been

    Stephen Fry Reveals Battle With Cancer in Online Video

    LONDON — Chris Patten, the last British governor of Hong Kong and a former chairman of the U.K’s right-of-center Conservative Party, is expected to be appointed chair of the BBC Trust next week. The appointment of Patten, who is 66, needs to be approved by the Prime Minister, David Cameron, who is likely to give […]

  • Ioan Gruffudd On Maturing into ‘Harrow’

    Ioan Gruffudd On Maturing into Crime Series ‘Harrow’ and Directing Ambitions

    LONDON — Chris Patten, the last British governor of Hong Kong and a former chairman of the U.K’s right-of-center Conservative Party, is expected to be appointed chair of the BBC Trust next week. The appointment of Patten, who is 66, needs to be approved by the Prime Minister, David Cameron, who is likely to give […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content