The BBC's heritage and history since it was founded in 1922
The BBC is the world's leading public service broadcaster. Its mission is to enrich people's lives with programmes that inform, educate and entertain
Established by a Royal Charter, the BBC is a public service broadcaster funded by the licence fee paid by UK households.
We use the income from the licence fee to provide services including 10 national TV channels plus regional programming, 10 national radio stations, 40 local radio stations and an extensive website.
BBC World Service broadcasts to the world on radio, on TV and online, providing news and information in 27 languages and world service English language. It is currently funded by the licence fee.
We also have a commercial arm, BBC Worldwide as well as a number of other commercial ventures. Profits from these activities are returned to the BBC for investment in new programming and services.
BBC services on television, radio and online
Most of the BBC's services in the UK are funded from income from the licence fee:
- 10 national television channels (BBC One, BBC Two, BBC Three, BBC Four, CBBC, CBeebies, BBC News, BBC Parliament, BBC Alba, BBC HD)
- BBC Red Button interactive TV
- 10 national radio stations (Radio 1, 1Xtra, Radio 2, Radio 3, Radio 4, Radio 4 Extra, Radio 5 Live, 5 Live Sports Extra, 6 Music, BBC Asian Network)
- National TV and radio services for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and over 40 local radio stations for England
- BBC Online
- BBC World Service
Around the world, there are separate commercial ventures whose profits help fund BBC public services, including BBC Worldwide, and BBC World News.