New BBC director-general appointed
Tony Hall, chief executive of the Royal Opera House, is to be appointed director-general of the BBC, the corporation reported today.
The former chief executive of BBC news will replace George Entwistle, who resigned earlier this month after failing to get to grips with a child sex abuse scandal that has thrown the 90-year-old state-funded broadcaster into turmoil.
He quit on earlier on November 10th after a Newsnight report mistakenly implicated Lord McAlpine in a child sex abuse scandal.
An official report on the programme concluded that the BBC’s botched Newsnight programme failed to complete “basic journalistic checks” and the programme’s editorial management structure had been “seriously weakened” as a result programme editor Peter Rippon having to step aside over the Jimmy Savile scandal, and the departure of the deputy editor.
Lord Hall is also deputy chairman of Channel 4 and is due to stand down from the Royal Opera House next year. Tim Davie will remain as the acting director-general until he is able to take up his appointment next year.
Lord Hall said today: “I believe passionately in the BBC and that’s why I have accepted Lord Patten’s invitation to become director general.”
He was appointed following a direct approach from the BBC Trust, which did not contact any other candidates. He was not an applicant when the position was vacated by Mark Thompson earlier this year.
Lord Hall took up his position at the opera house in 2001 and was credited with bringing financial stability to the institution, according to the opera house website.
Before that as chief executive of BBC News, he launched Radio 5 Live BBC News 24, BBC News Online and BBC Parliament. He is the author of King Coal (1981), a history of the National Union of Mineworkers, and Nuclear Power (1984).
In 2010 he was made a a life peer with the title Baron Hall of Birkenhead.