George Entwistle Director General

Executive Board

George took up his appointment as Director-General on 17 September 2012. He resigned on 10 November 2012. 

George was Chief Executive and editor-in-chief of the BBC, appointed by the BBC Chairman.

He was Chair of the BBC Executive Board.

He was Chairman of BBC Worldwide.

He was also the champion of the BBC's commitment to Public Service Broadcasting and the responsible and effective use of licence fee revenue.

Salary and total remuneration


The salaries and total remuneration of the Executive Board are published as part of the BBC's Annual Report and Accounts 2011/12.

Salary: £248,000*

Total remuneration: £261,000*

*These represent George's earnings as Director, BBC Vision from 1 May 2011 to 31 March 2012.

George's annual substantive salary as Director-General is £450,000 excluding taxable benefits.

Total remuneration represents annual salary, taxable benefits and other remuneration received.


Last updated November 2012

George Entwistle was appointed Director-General Designate on 4 July 2012 and took up his appointment as Director-General on 17 September 2012.

He is responsible for all the BBC’s services across television, radio and online and a global workforce of 20,000.

George was previously Director of BBC Vision, with responsibility for BBC One, BBC Two, BBC Three, BBC Four, BBC One HD, BBC HD, BBC Films, Vision Production and with editorial oversight for UKTV. Programmes broadcast under George’s tenure include Call The Midwife, Frozen Planet, The Voice UK, Shakespeare Unlocked, The London Season, The Men Who Made Us Fat, Birdsong, Britain in a Day, and Mrs Brown’s Boys.

Before this, George was the BBC's Controller of Knowledge Commissioning and the Controller of Editorial Standards for BBC Vision. He was also the Advisory Chair of the Edinburgh International TV Festival 2011.

As Controller of Knowledge Commissioning, from January 2008, George was responsible for delivering the Knowledge and Learning strategies across the BBC, on TV and on the web, from landmark series to documentaries and online products; and across specialisms including arts, history, natural history, business, science, religion, consumer journalism and contemporary factual.

He led BBC Vision's Knowledge, Learning and Multiplatform commissioning teams, who commission programmes and multiplatform content from Vision Productions and the independent sector – which together produce more than 1,600 hours of TV output a year.

During his time at BBC Knowledge, George championed high profile pan-channel and pan-BBC seasons, including in 2010: World Of Wonder, the BBC's year of science programming which increased Science audience reach by over four million people on the previous year; the Opera season across BBC Two, BBC Four and Radio 3; and the Battle Of Britain season across BBC One, Two and Four in the autumn of 2010. He coordinated the religion and events coverage of the Papal Visit across radio and television in autumn 2010.

George read Philosophy and Politics at Durham University. He began his career as a writer and magazine editor with Haymarket Magazines and went on to join the BBC in 1989 as a Broadcast Journalism trainee. He became an assistant producer on Panorama, where he worked on the programme's coverage of the first Gulf War, the fall of Margaret Thatcher, and an investigation into how the Tiananmen Square protest leaders were spirited out of China.

In January 1993, George became a producer for On The Record and subsequently went on to be a producer, assistant editor and deputy editor on BBC Two's flagship current affairs programme Newsnight between 1994 and 1999.

He became Editor of Newsnight in 2001, starting work in his new post the day before the 9/11 attacks on the Pentagon and Twin Towers in the USA. During his editorship, the show won five RTS Awards, including Best News Programme; as well as picking up a Broadcast Award and a Bafta nomination for Best News Programme.

George's career has embraced a broad range of factual programme-making. In 1999, after 10 years in current affairs, he joined the science department as deputy editor of BBC One's popular science show Tomorrow's World where he remained for nearly two years before returning to Newsnight as Deputy Editor. In 2004 he left Newsnight for BBC Arts to become executive editor of Topical Arts on BBC Two and BBC Four. There he launched The Culture Show for BBC Two and executive-produced arts films for BBC Four. He also spent several months as Chair of the Knowledge Building workgroup on Mark Thompson's Creative Future strategy review.

In late 2005, he was appointed Head and Commissioning Editor of TV Current Affairs and joined BBC Television's factual commissioning team.

With Peter Fincham, then Controller of BBC One, George returned Panorama to a weekday peak-time slot. He also commissioned a wide variety of current affairs documentary series for BBC Two, including The Conspiracy Files, Michael Cockerell's series Blair: The Inside Story, Tropic Of Capricorn with Simon Reeve, Adam Curtis's series The Trap, the Falklands War drama-doc Sea Of Fire, Peter Taylor's four-part Age Of Terror, and Norma Percy's multiple award-winning Iran And The West.

In April 2007, he became Acting Controller of BBC Four and led the channel during a period which saw the first runs of Mad Men and Flight Of The Conchords. George also commissioned the highly successful Golden Age Of Steam season whose standout shows – Julia Bradbury's Railway Walks series and Ian Hislop's documentary on the Beeching closures – remain among the most watched factual programmes in the channel's history.

As Acting Director, BBC Vision, Entwistle was responsible for the move of QI back to BBC Two and triple RTS award-winner Miranda to BBC One for her forthcoming eponymous series expected next year.

George grew up in Yorkshire and his secondary education was at Silcoates School in Wakefield.

Expenses and central bookings

Expenses are costs incurred by BBC staff on behalf of the BBC and claimed through the BBC's expenses system (e-expenses). Central bookings are costs incurred on behalf of the BBC and booked through the BBC's central bookings system. Both expenses and central bookings are published every three months.


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Gifts and Hospitality Register

Gifts and hospitality may only be accepted in line with BBC policy. Information about gifts and hospitality is published every three months.


Declaration of personal interests

Executive Board members must make a declaration of their personal and business interests, including any memberships or directorships of public or industry bodies, and any shareholdings, as well as any interests that their immediate families may also have.

A summary is published where there is something to declare and where there is nothing to declare. Occasionally an individual will have something to declare but due to the personal nature of the declaration we do not publish details as to do so would breach the Data Protection Act.

This information is published annually, although if any amendments are made during the year an updated summary will be published if necessary as soon as it is available.


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