Newcastle named BBC's city of comedy | String of events planned for the North East

Newcastle named BBC's city of comedy

String of events planned for the North East

The BBC has announced that Newcastle-upon-Tyne will be its first ‘city of comedy’.

It means that the city and surrounding region will host a series of masterclasses and events – including this year’s New Comedy Awards.

A Radio 4 comedy series, yet to be announced, will also be recorded in Newcastle.

When the plans for a city of comedy were first announced in December, the BBC said that the awards would be the centrepiece of a comedy festival that would ‘celebrate the cultural contribution comedy makes to the UK [and] feature a range of showcases, workshops and screenings’.

The news comes as part of a BBC pledge to spend £25million in the North East of England over the next five years, under a deal struck with local authorities in the area.

Other plans include a new daytime show, a technology hub creating 70 jobs, and the next two series of award-winning BBC One documentary series Ambulance to be shot there.

BBC director-general Tim Davie, said: ‘This is a really exciting day for the BBC and I hope for the whole of the North East too.

‘What’s clear is the ambition and determination to make the North East a major centre for the creative industries and we want to play an important part in making that happen. We want to see more BBC content coming from the North East and a BBC that’s much more active and visible in the region.’

• BBC New Comedy Award heats will take place at Patti Pavilion in Swansea on September 30’ the Light House in Wolverhampton on October 4; Verdant Works In Dundee on October 10 and Portrush Town Hall on October 12. Free tickets are available here.

Published: 23 Sep 2021

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