BBC Music Magazine

The Full Score

Station to relocate main base to Salford while maintainin­g London presence


The latest news from around the classical music world

Radio 3 plans to increase its programmes from Salford to over 50 per cent

In one of the most significan­t changes to the station since the Third Programme first aired in 1946, BBC Radio 3 is to shi its main base to Greater Manchester in 2023. At the same time, the BBC Concert Orchestra is to relocate away from London, moving to an as yet unnamed new home.

A recent announceme­nt has set out how Radio 3 is planning to increase the amount of programmes produced in Mediacityu­k in Salford to over 50 per cent. It will, however, by no means be abandoning London, as work continues on a new developmen­t at East Bank, the future home for the BBC Symphony Orchestra & Chorus and BBC Singers that will incorporat­e state-of-the-art studios for broadcasts. The BBC Proms will also still continue at their traditiona­l home of the Royal Albert Hall, but there will be further Proms events outside the capital.

Many other programmes will continue be broadcast from across the UK, a process that has been necessitat­ed and accelerate­d in recent months by lockdown – the Sunday Morning programme, for instance, has of late been presented by Sarah Walker from a studio at the bottom of her garden.

Though the exact location of the BBC Concert Orchestra’s new base has not yet been revealed, the BBC has confirmed that it will be outside the M25 motorway and will be in a town or city that makes the ensemble ideally placed to bring live orchestral music to otherwise underserve­d local audiences. Founded in 1952, the

BBC Concert Orchestra has traditiona­lly focused on lighter repertoire, not least for Radio 2’s Friday Night is Music Night programme and for the annual Proms in the Park in London’s Hyde Park. It does, however, regularly show its mettle in weightier music, such as last month’s

BBC Music Magazine cover CD of Malcolm Arnold Symphonies Nos 2 & 4.

Alan Davey, controller of Radio 3, believes the geographic­al shi will help the station to ‘go further’. ‘By rooting ourselves in the North,’ he says, ‘we can continue to lead and develop music and culture in the whole of the UK, connecting with the vibrant classical music and culture of more cities and towns.’

 ??  ?? Mancunian melodies: Salford’s Mediacityu­k; (right) Radio 3 presenter Sarah Walker
Mancunian melodies: Salford’s Mediacityu­k; (right) Radio 3 presenter Sarah Walker
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