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BBC praised for youth output

A new BBC Trust report has praised the Corporation for serving its younger audience – defined as those between 13 and 34 – well. It examined output from BBC3, Radio 1, 1Xtra, BBC Switch and Bitesize.

In radio, the report, Younger Audiences: BBC3, Radio 1 and 1Xtra, admitted that the BBC will face ever increasing challenges in the way that it tackles news and how it presents it to a younger audience, but in real terms, the criticism was minor and the report praised the BBC in its efforts to reach out and engage with a youthful audience.

One criticism was leveled at Radio 1 executives, who were asked to focus on winning younger listeners, something that had already been highlighted as a cause for concern in the trust’s 2007 report.

Of the network, the report said: "We believe it has potential to increase its public value further, given the strength of its market position.”

BBC trustee Alison Hastings, who led the review, said: "Although the BBC is doing well, there are areas where more can be done, for example through more ambitious speech output on Radio 1. We will now look to BBC management to build on the good work they have in place.

"Our review shows that BBC3, Radio 1 and 1Xtra are doing a particularly good job in serving young people. Radio 1's promotion of new UK music and ability to reach a large number of young people with its news bulletins, and 1Xtra's support for music not heard elsewhere are all strong achievements."

Tim Davie, the BBC audio and music director, added: "Supporting new music and promoting new artists in the UK is at the heart of Radio 1's offer and we're pleased the trust has recognised the station's strong contribution to delivering the citizenship purpose to young audiences.”

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