Branding: ITV STV UTV
|Headquarters||London, England, UK|
|Owner||ITV plc and STV Group plc|
|Launched||22 September 1955|
|Website|| itv.com |
ITV is a British free-to-air television network with its headquarters in London. It was launched in 1955 as Independent Television to provide competition to BBC Television, which had been established in 1932.ITV is the oldest commercial network in the UK. Since the passing of the Broadcasting Act 1990, its legal name has been Channel 3, to distinguish it from the other analogue channels at the time, namely BBC 1, BBC 2 and Channel 4.
ITV is a network of television companies that operate regional television services and also share programmes between each other to be shown on the entire network. Each franchise was originally owned by a different company, but after several mergers the fifteen regional franchises are held by two companies, ITV plc and STV Group.
The ITV network is a separate entity from ITV plc, the company that resulted from the merger of Granada plc and Carlton Communications in 2004. ITV plc holds the Channel 3 broadcasting licences for every region except central and northern Scotland, which are held by STV Group. In Northern Ireland ITV plc uses the brand name UTV, the name used by former owner UTV Media (now known as Wireless Group).
The origins of ITV lie in the passing of the Television Act 1954, designed to break the monopoly on television held by the BBC Television Service.The act created the Independent Television Authority (ITA, then IBA after the Sound Broadcasting Act) to heavily regulate the industry and to award franchises. The first six franchises were awarded in 1954 for London, the Midlands and the North of England, with separate franchises for Weekdays and Weekends. The first ITV network to launch was London's Associated-Rediffusion on 22 September 1955, with the Midlands and North services launching in February 1956 and May 1956 respectively. Following these launches, the ITA awarded more franchises until the whole country was covered by fourteen regional stations, all launched by 1962.
The network has been modified several times through franchise reviews that have taken place in 1963, million for a region of the same size and status, owing to heavy competition.1967, 1974, 1980 and 1991, during which broadcast regions have changed and service operators have been replaced. Only one service operator has ever been declared bankrupt, WWN in 1963, with all other operators leaving the network as a result of a franchise review. Separate weekend franchises were removed in 1968 (with the exception of London) and over the years more services were added; these included a national breakfast franchise from 1983 onward—operating between 6:00 am and 9:25 am—and a teletext service. The Broadcasting Act 1990 changed the nature of ITV; the then regulator the IBA was replaced with a light-touch regulator, the ITC; companies became able to purchase other ITV regional companies and franchises were now being awarded based upon a highest-bidder auction, with few safeguards in place. This heavily criticised part of the review saw four operators replaced, and the operators facing different annual payments to the Treasury: Central Television, for example, paid only £2000—despite holding a lucrative and large region—because it was unopposed, while Yorkshire Television paid £37.7
Following the 1993 changes, ITV as a network began to consolidate with several companies doing so to save money by ceasing the duplication of services present when they were all separate companies. By 2004, ITV was owned by five companies, of which two, Carlton and Granada had become major players by owning between them all the franchises in England, Wales, the Scottish borders and the Isle of Man.That same year, the two merged to form ITV plc with the only subsequent acquisitions being the takeover of Channel Television, the Channel Islands franchise, in 2011; and UTV, the franchise for Northern Ireland, in 2015.
The ITV network is not owned or operated by one company, but by a number of licensees, which provide regional services while also broadcasting programmes across the network. Since 2016, the fifteen licences are held by two companies, with the majority held by ITV Broadcasting Limited, part of ITV plc.
The network is regulated by the media regulator Ofcom who is responsible for awarding the broadcast licences. The last major review of the Channel 3 franchises was in 1991, with all operators' licences having been renewed between 1999 and 2002 and again from 2014 without a further contest. While this has been the longest period that the ITV Network has gone without a major review of its licence holders, Ofcom announced (following consultation) that it would split the Wales and West licence from 1 January 2014, creating a national licence for Wales and joining the newly separated West region to Westcountry Television, to form a new licence for the enlarged South West of England region.
All companies holding a licence were part of the non-profit body ITV Network Limited, which commissioned and scheduled network programming, with compliance previously handled by ITV plc and Channel Television. However, due to amalgamation of several of these companies since the creation of ITV Network Limited (and given Channel Television is now owned by ITV plc), it has been replaced by an affiliation system.Approved by Ofcom, this results in ITV plc commissioning and funding the network schedule, with STV and UTV paying a fee to broadcast it. All licensees have the right to opt out of network programming (except for the national news bulletins), however many do not due to pressures from the parent company or because of limited resources. Prior to the affiliate system being introduced, STV would frequently (and sometimes controversially) opt out of several popular network programmes – such as the original run of the first series of Downton Abbey – citing the need to provide more Scottish content to its viewers.
As a public service broadcaster, the ITV network is obliged to broadcast programming of public importance, including news, current affairs, children's and religious programming as well as party election broadcasts on behalf of the major political parties and political events, such as the Budget. The network also needs to produce accessible output containing subtitles, signing and audio description. In exchange for this programming, the ITV network is available on all platforms free to air and can be found at the top of the EPG of all providers.
Since the launch of the platform in 1998, all of the ITV licensees have received gifted capacity on the digital terrestrial television platform. At present, the companies are able to broadcast additional channels and all choose to broadcast the ITV plc owned ITV2, ITV3, ITV4 and CITV in their region. UTV and STV (formerly Scottish Television and Grampian Television) previously broadcast their own services – UTV2 in Northern Ireland and S2 in central and northern Scotland – until 2002, when they adopted the ITV plc channels. The broadcasters all make use of the Digital 3&4 multiplex, shared with Channel 4. ITV Encore launched in June 2014 and ITVBe launched in October 2014. ITV Box Office launched in February 2017.
ITV plc owns thirteen of the fifteen franchises and broadcasts to England, Wales, southern Scotland, the Isle of Man, the Channel Islands and Northern Ireland through its subsidiary companies ITV Broadcasting Limited, and UTV LimitedThe company also owns the breakfast contractor that broadcasts across the network between 6:00 and 9:25am each morning using the Good Morning Britain (previously Daybreak ) and Lorraine names. The company broadcasts a centralised service under the ITV brand. In Northern Ireland, ITV uses the UTV brand name.
The group also owns ITV Studios, the production arm of the company and formed from an amalgamation of all the production departments of the regional licences they own. The company produces a large proportion of ITV's networked programming (around 47%, but previously as high as 66% according to some reports), with the rest coming primarily from independent suppliers (under the Broadcasting Act 1990, at least 25% of ITV's total output must be from independent companies). ITV plc hopes to increase the amount of in-house programming to as close to the 75% limit as possible.
The group cut the number of regional news programmes offered from 17 in 2007 to 9 by 2009, resulting several regions being merged to form one programme, including the Border Television and Tyne Tees Television regions, the Westcountry Television and West regions and the removal of sub regional programming, with some regions only represented by pre-recorded segments.
STV Group plc owns two franchises, covering central and northern Scotland, through subsidiary companies STV Central and STV North, broadcasting a central service under the STV brand.
The company has had several disputes with ITV plc in recent years over network programming. STV aims to broadcast more Scottish programmes at peak times and so removed several key ITV plc programmes from their schedule in July 2009 including The Bill , Midsomer Murders and Lewis . million, as ITV plc felt dropping the shows constituted a breach of network agreements; STV subsequently counter-sued ITV plc for £35 million.Despite STV's explanation of expense, ITV plc were angered by the decision, as a recent schedule change had made The Bill central to their programming, and broadcast the programmes on ITV3 as well to ensure Scottish viewers could see the programmes. On 23 September ITV was reported to be in the process of suing STV for £20
The dispute was ended in 2011 with STV agreeing to pay ITV plc £18 million. The signing of the new affiliation deal has resulted in STV paying a flat fee for all networked programming, and so to drop any programmes is unlikely due to the large costs involved.
There are fourteen regional licences and one national licence for the breakfast service. Other licences exist to provide specific programming services, such as Teletext and national news, but are not listed here. All licences listed here were renewed until the end of 2024. Licences in England and Wales were held by the individual regional ITV plc owned companies prior to November 2008.
|Regional Channel 3 Licences|
|Licence Service Area||Licence Holder||Licence held since||Parent Company||Service Name||On Air Name|
|North of Scotland||STV North Limited||30 September 1961||STV Group plc||STV North||STV|
|Central Scotland||STV Central Limited||31 August 1957||STV Group plc||STV Central||STV|
|Northern Ireland||UTV Limited||31 October 1959||ITV plc||UTV||UTV|
|Channel Islands||ITV Broadcasting Limited||March 2017||ITV plc||ITV Channel TV||ITV|
|England–Scotland Border||ITV Broadcasting Limited||November 2008||ITV plc||ITV Border||ITV|
|North East England||ITV Broadcasting Limited||November 2008||ITV plc||ITV Tyne Tees||ITV|
|Yorkshire and Lincolnshire||ITV Broadcasting Limited||November 2008||ITV plc||ITV Yorkshire||ITV|
|North West England and Isle of Man||ITV Broadcasting Limited||November 2008||ITV plc||ITV Granada||ITV|
|Wales||ITV Broadcasting Limited||November 2008||ITV plc||ITV Cymru Wales||ITV Cymru Wales|
|East, West and South Midlands||ITV Broadcasting Limited||November 2008||ITV plc||ITV Central||ITV|
|East of England||ITV Broadcasting Limited||December 2006||ITV plc||ITV Anglia||ITV|
|London (weekdays)||ITV Broadcasting Limited||November 2008||ITV plc||ITV London (weekdays)||ITV|
|London (weekends)||ITV Broadcasting Limited||November 2008||ITV plc||ITV London (weekends)||ITV|
|South and South East England||ITV Broadcasting Limited||November 2008||ITV plc||ITV Meridian||ITV|
|South West and West of England||ITV Broadcasting Limited||November 2008||ITV plc||ITV West Country||ITV|
|National Channel 3 Licences|
|Licence Service Area||Licence Holder||Licence held since||Parent Company||Service Name||On Air Name|
|National breakfast time||ITV Breakfast Broadcasting Limited||1993||ITV plc||ITV Breakfast||ITV|
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For over 60 years of ITV, its homegrown programmes have become among the best remembered as well as being extremely successful. Before the 1990s, nearly all of the content for the channel was produced by the fifteen franchise licensees: the regional companies.
However, in the last decade, and following legislation in the Broadcasting Act 1990 imposing a 25% quota for commissioning of independent productions,the number of programmes from independent production companies not connected to the traditional ITV Network, has increased rapidly. Notable examples include Talkback Thames (one half of which, Thames Television, was itself a former ITV franchisee), producers of The Bill and co-producers of The X Factor , and 2waytraffic (previously Celador), producers of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? .
From the late 1990s, ITV's long-standing commitment to strong current affairs and documentary programming began to diminish with the ending of productions such as World in Action (Granada Television), This Week (Rediffusion London/Thames Television), First Tuesday (Yorkshire Television), Network First , Survival (Anglia Television), and Weekend World (LWT) and their replacement with populist shows such as Tonight . News at Ten was also axed in 1999, although it was reinstated in 2001. In December 2009, the final edition of ITV's long-running arts programme, The South Bank Show was broadcast.
ITV's primetime schedules are dominated by its soap operas, such as the flagship Coronation Street and Emmerdale . At the start of the 21st century, Independent Television faced criticism for including a large amount of "reality TV" programmes in the schedule, such as Celebrity Fit Club , Celebrity Wrestling and Love Island. In its defence, ITV does continue to show its major strengths in the fields of sports coverage and drama productions, and it continues to schedule national news in primetime.
ITV's strong daytime line-up helped by programmes such as This Morning , Loose Women , Good Morning Britain , Dickinson's Real Deal and game shows Tipping Point and The Chase are very popular, achieving the highest audience share during the daytime slot.
Since the network started, Independent Television News Limited (ITN) has held the contract to produce news for the ITV Network, with 30-minute national news bulletins broadcast at 1:30 pm, 6:30 pm, and 10:00 pm. These bulletins were broadcast under the ITN brand between 1955 and 1999, when a new network identity reinforced the ITV brand, resulting in the new bulletins being broadcast under the ITV News brand.
ITN has long been respected in the news industry as a source of reliable information and news, and as a result the service has won many awards for their programmes, the latest being in May 2011 when News at Ten was named best news programme by the Royal Television Society and BAFTA.
Between 6 am and 10 am on Monday to Friday, ITV broadcast two breakfast programmes called Good Morning Britain and Lorraine . Good Morning Britain keeps viewers up to date with all the latest news, sports, features and weather, whilst Lorraine predominantly focuses on celebrity interviews, recipes, fashion and showbiz.
The regional ITV companies are required to provide local news as part of their franchise agreement, with the main local bulletin at 6pm and regional bulletins located after each national news programme. In addition to this, traditionally ITV companies would provide other regional programming based on current affairs, entertainment or drama. However, apart from a monthly political programme, most non-news regional programming in the English regions was dropped by ITV plc in 2009, although it continues in Wales and the Channel Islands, as well as on STV and UTV & from 2014 ITV Border Scotland.On 14 January 2013, ITV plc regional news programmes titles were discontinued in favour of more generic branding under the ITV News title with the region listed as the subheading. However some "heritage" brand names were retained including Calendar, Granada Reports and Lookaround. On the 28 June 2014, ITV Cymru Wales News returned to its historic name of Wales at Six.
The ITV National Weather forecast was first broadcast in 1989, using data supplied by the Met Office, and was presented by a number of weather forecasters. The forecasts are sponsored in which the sponsors message, would appear prior to and following the forecast. The forecasts are made immediately after the main national news bulletins.
Prior to the creation of the national forecast, regional forecast provided by each regional companies were shown in each region only. The regional forecasts today are incorporated into the main regional news bulletins, and in the summer months, includes a Pollen Count.
ITV covers many popular sports. The channel emphasises coverage of football, with the channel previously holding the UK terrestrial rights to the UEFA Champions League and with the channel sharing coverage of international football events such as the World Cup with the BBC. On 30 March 2007, The Football Association announced that it had agreed a new four-year £425m television deal for ITV and Setanta Sports to show FA Cup and England international matches (the Scottish regional broadcaster STV blacks out those games and replaces them with regular programming). The deal with the FA represented a 42% increase on the existing deal with BBC Sport and BSkyB.
In May 2009, ITV acquired the rights to broadcast live cricket from the Indian Premier League. The network also covers motorsport, rugby, wrestling, and other sports.
The network broadcasts children's programming under the CITV (Children's ITV) strand. Children's programming was originally provided during weekday afternoons and weekend mornings, however following the launch of the CITV Channel in 2006, all children's programming, with the exception of the weekend ITV Breakfast slot, were relocated from the ITV line-up to the CITV channel in 2007, a move which was challenged by Ofcom in April 2007.
The Public Teletext Licenceallows the holder to broadcast a text-based information service around the clock on Channel 3 (as well as Channel 4 and S4C) frequencies. Teletext on ITV was provided by ORACLE from 1974 until 1993 and from 1993 to 2010 by Teletext Ltd., whose news, sport and TV listings pages rivalled the BBC's offering, Ceefax on terrestrial and BBC Red Button on digital. Teletext Ltd. also provided digital teletext for the Channel 3 services, as well as the text output for both Channel 4 and S4C under the same licence and Channel 5. However, the licence was revoked by Ofcom on 29 January 2010 for failing to provide news and local non-news information on ITV and there is currently no teletext licence holder for ITV.
Schools programming on the network began in 1957 in some regions and expanded as more regions began broadcasting. It is a contractual obligation for the ITV company to broadcast schools programming, and this was initially broadcast as part of the normal scheduling. The programmes were moved into a segment for broadcast during the day in the 1960s, under the banner Independent Television for Schools and Colleges and from 1987 were broadcast on Channel 4 in the ITV Schools on Channel 4 segment. In 1993, this segment became Channel 4 Schools and later in 2000 4Learning. These strands of programming consisted of schools programming from all the ITV companies or from independent sources. The schools strand itself is now defunct, with no particular branding segment used.
ITV (as UTV) is widely available in Ireland, where it is received directly in areas bordering Northern Ireland, or in coastal areas from Wales (as ITV Cymru Wales). Until 2015, it was also carried on cable, when it was replaced by UTV Ireland, which was itself replaced by be3, now Virgin Media Three. It is also available on cable and IPTV in Switzerland and Liechtenstein. Since 27 March 2013, it has been offered by the British Forces Broadcasting Service (BFBS) to members of HM Forces and their families around the world, replacing the BFBS3 TV channel, which already carried a selection of ITV programmes.
Since the launch of ITV, there have been concerns from politicians and the press that ITV faced a conflict concerning programme audiences and advertisers. As advertisers are reluctant to buy advertising space around low viewing programmes, there is a pressure on ITV to broadcast more popular programmes in peak times. This has become more profound in recent years following a relaxation in regulation and significantly more competition in the advertising market following the huge increase in commercial channels. In recent years, programmes have started to dominate from the reality television genre including the celebrity and talent show subgenres. This has led to accusations of ITV 'dumbing down' their programmes and appealing to the 'lowest common denominator', accusations that are at odds with the network's status as a public service broadcaster.ITV was/is also heavily criticised for scaling back its regional programmes, including regional news, also ITV has been criticised (since 2010) for showing Emmerdale and Coronation Street at the 8:30 weekday slot (except Tuesdays).
|2017||Diversity in Media Awards||Broadcaster of the Year||ITV||Nominated|
ITV Channel Television, previously Channel Television, is a British television station which has served as the ITV contractor for the Channel Islands since 1962. It is based in Jersey and broadcasts regional programme for insertion into the network ITV schedule. Until November 2011, Channel Television was one of four ITV companies independent from ITV plc alongside the two STV regions in Scotland and UTV in Northern Ireland. The station has been owned by ITV plc since 2012 and the licence was transferred to ITV Broadcasting Limited in March 2017.
Television in the United Kingdom started in 1936 as a public service which was free of advertising. Currently, the United Kingdom has a collection of free-to-air, free-to-view and subscription services over a variety of distribution media, through which there are over 480 channels for consumers as well as on-demand content. There are six main channel owners who are responsible for most material viewed. There are 27,000 hours of domestic content produced a year at a cost of £2.6 billion. Since 24 October 2012, all television broadcasts in the United Kingdom have been in a digital format, following the end of analogue transmissions in Northern Ireland. Digital content is delivered via terrestrial, satellite and cable, as well as over IP. As of 2003, 53.2% of households watch through terrestrial, 31.3% through satellite, and 15.6% through cable.
ITV is a British free-to-air television channel. Previously a network of separate uniquely identifiable regional television channels, ITV currently operates in England, Wales, Scotland, the Isle of Man, and the Channel Islands.
ITV plc is a British media company that holds 13 of the 15 regional television licences that make up the ITV network, the oldest and largest commercial terrestrial television network in the United Kingdom. The network, which is branded ITV by ITV plc, has vied with BBC One for the status of the UK's most watched channel since the 1950s.
ITV Meridian is the holder of the ITV franchise for the South and South East of England. The station was launched at 12:00 am on 1 January 1993, replacing previous broadcaster Television South, and is owned and operated by ITV plc, under the licensee of ITV Broadcasting Limited. Meridian Broadcasting Ltd was one of several ITV plc-owned regional companies to have its legal name changed on 29 December 2006, when it became ITV Meridian Ltd. This company is, along with most other regional companies owned by ITV plc, listed with Companies House as a "Dormant company".
Television in Scotland mostly consists of UK-wide broadcasts, with regional variations at different times which are specific to Scotland. The BBC and ITV networks both formally began broadcasting in the country during the 1950s. There were further expansions in the early 1960s with the arrival of Grampian, Borders and BBC2 television.
The history of ITV, the United Kingdom "Independent Television" commercial network, goes back to 1955.
ITV West Country is the British television service provided by ITV Broadcasting Limited for the South West England franchise area on the ITV network. Previously, between 2009 and 2013, the area was a non-franchise region, branded with the same name, incorporating the former ITV Westcountry franchise area and the ITV West sub-region of the ITV Wales & West franchise. Each company that makes up the new region still legally exists. ITV Wales & West Ltd, ITV Wales & West Group Ltd and Westcountry Television Ltd are each, along with most other regional companies owned by ITV plc, listed on www.companieshouse.gov.uk as a "dormant company".
ITV Thames Valley was a non-franchise ITV news region covering the Thames Valley area of the United Kingdom from 4 December 2006 until 8 February 2009. It served the south/south-eastern area of the legal Central franchise and the north/north-western area of the legal Meridian franchise. In its first year, its flagship news programme Thames Valley Tonight won the Royal Television Society's Southern Centre Award for News Magazine Programme of the Year for its coverage of the 2007 summer floods.
STV is a Scottish free-to-air television channel serving Scotland. It operates the two ITV network licences in northern and central Scotland, formerly known as Grampian Television and Scottish Television. The brand was adopted on Tuesday 30 May 2006 replacing both franchises' identities. STV celebrated its 60th birthday in 2017, with special programmes broadcast on STV and the now defunct STV2.
Analogue terrestrial television in the United Kingdom was originally the method by which the significant majority of viewers in the UK, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man received television. Analogue terrestrial television broadcasts have ceased everywhere in the UK with Northern Ireland being the last region to have ceased broadcasting analogue terrestrial television broadcasts. Northern Ireland switched off the last analogue television signals, making all of the United Kingdom only capable of receiving digital television, in the early hours of 24 October 2012. It has been completely replaced by digital terrestrial television and other non-terrestrial means as of the end of 2012.
ITV Tyne Tees & Border is the producer of regional programming for the ITV Tyne Tees and ITV Border franchises.
Lookaround is the evening news programme produced by ITV Tyne Tees & Border and broadcasting to Cumbria, Dumfries & Galloway and the Scottish Borders. It broadcasts for thirty minutes each Monday to Friday from 18:00, covering regional news stories, features, sport and weather. It is presented by Ian Payne or Pam Royle. Shorter bulletins air at other times.
STV Group plc is a media company based in Glasgow, Scotland. Beginning as a television broadcaster in 1957, the company expanded into newspapers, advertising and radio; after completing a restructuring in 2010, STV Group is active in broadcast television, video-on-demand and television production. The company is a constituent of the FTSE SmallCap Index.
This is a timeline of the history of ITV.
This is a timeline of the history of Westcountry Television.
This is a timeline of the history of ITV Cymru Wales.
This is a timeline of the history of HTV West.
This is a timeline of the history of Scottish Television.
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