BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page has been archived and is no longer updated. Find out more about page archiving.

24 September 2014
Press Office
Search the BBC and Web
Search BBC Press Office

BBC Homepage

Contact Us

Jana Bennett

Press Releases

Jana Bennett announces latest senior appointments in BBC Vision

Jana Bennett, Director of the newly created BBC Vision, has announced the latest in a series of senior appointments to the new group.


Glenwyn Benson, currently Controller, Factual Television, BBC, will be Controller, Knowledge, with overall executive responsibility for delivering Knowledge (including Learning), driving the use of the full range of multimedia possibilities.


Emma Swain, currently Commissioning Editor, Science, History and Natural History, will be Head of Multimedia Knowledge Commissioning, and Deputy Controller, Knowledge, reporting to Glenwyn.


Announcing the latest series of appointments, Jana Bennett said: "The appointments of Glenwyn and Emma, who both have outstanding track records in factual programme-making and commissioning, are very significant for the BBC.


"The delivery of programmes and content on Knowledge is one of the most important missions for the BBC as we seek to deliver our vision as set out in Creative Future.


"Glenwyn will be the chief architect of the BBC's Knowledge building mission as we enter the new Charter period, while Emma will ensure that our award-winning slates maintain momentum as we develop 360 degree commissioning.


"Glenwyn and Emma will hugely increase the profile within our output of factual, formal learning and BBC jam, the BBC's new digital curriculum service for children, and drive 360 degree content creation in this new area."


Commissioners will retain responsibility for making commissioning decisions, as now, and Emma will retain responsibility for Science, History and Natural History.


She will be working with the commissioners to ensure the commissioning team develop their new multimedia brief to meet the demand for 360 degree commissioning.


Also announced today are three further senior appointments.


Lesley Swarbrick will be Head of Human Resources and Development for BBC Vision. Lesley is currently Head of HR and Development Manager for BBC Television. She will lead the HR team across BBC Vision to develop its capability in a changing world.


Ian Critchley, currently Head of Human Resources and Development, BBC Drama, Entertainment and Children's, will be Head of Production Talent, BBC Vision.


Ian will join Lesley's team and work closely with Peter Salmon, Chief Creative Officer, BBC Vision. He will ensure a strategic approach to talent management within the group, and will offer insight and ideas on talent issues.


Helen Kellie, currently Head of Brand and Planning, BBC, will be Head of Marketing, Communications and Audiences, BBC Vision.


Helen will be responsible for a team of 108 professional marketing and communications staff responsible for the marketing and promotion of programmes, content and services produced by the group.


Jana Bennett said: "I am delighted to have been able to attract such an impressive list of talent to join the team who will build BBC Vision.


"Lesley, Helen and Ian will play a crucial role as part of our senior team in ensuring we deliver our vision to the audience.


"Lesley is a very experienced HR professional who has an outstanding understanding of our business, built through work in almost all areas of the BBC.


"Ian has built up a deserved strong reputation for talent management at Drama, Entertainment and Children's and I am delighted that he will focus on this vital area for our new group.


"Helen brings strong experience of strategic marketing of the BBC, which will be vital as she helps us develop a new relationship with our audiences in the multimedia world."




Glenwyn Benson has been Controller, Factual Television, since 2003.


She began her broadcasting career at LWT and became Deputy Editor of Weekend World before joining the BBC as Editor of On The Record. She was subsequently Editor of Panorama before taking charge of the BBC's adult education programming.


She became the BBC's Head of Science and in 2000 became Controller, Specialist Factual. In 2001, she was appointed Joint Director, BBC Factual and Learning, and was a member of the BBC's Executive Committee during this period.


Emma Swain became Commissioning Editor, Specialist Factual in 2005. A freelance director for many years, making films for the BBC and Channel 4, her directing credits include the science series Labours of Eve and The Limit as well as films for Comic Relief.


In Specialist Factual, she has executive produced series for BBC ONE on Space, Life Before Birth and The Secrets of Happiness.


She has been deputy commissioner, Science and a Commissioner for Specialist Factual since 2002, commissioning Science, History, Business, Religion and Natural History for BBC ONE, TWO, THREE and FOUR.


Lesley Swarbrick joined the BBC in 1990 as a personnel trainee and has held senior HR positions across the BBC, including Science, Factual, Production, Sport and Factual and Learning.


She was appointed Head of HR and Development for BBC Television in 2005. Before embarking on an HR career, Lesley worked as a freelance journalist and also spent periods in arts, voluntary sector administration and in recruitment.


Ian Critchley joined the BBC from Granada Television (where he was Head of Programme Services) in 1994 as a Personnel Manager in Music and Arts.


He was subsequently Head of Personnel and Programme Services for BBC Entertainment before taking up his present role as Head of Human Resources and Development for BBC Drama, Entertainment and Children's in 2001.


He is a member of the Advisory Committee of the Edinburgh International Television Festival.


Helen Kellie joined the BBC in 2000 as Head of Marketing Strategy in Marketing, Communications and Audiences, where she led the initiation of the formal prioritisation of support for content and services across the BBC, and led on BBC brand and branding.


She also initiated the successful BBC audience planning team, which works with programme makers on the development of programme ideas.


She was previously a marketeer at Reckitt Benckiser in the UK, New York and Paris, latterly as Euro Category Director.


BBC Vision


The creation of BBC Vision under Jana Bennett's leadership was announced on 19 July 2006 as part of Director-General Mark Thompson's plans to deliver the BBC's creative vision as outlined in Creative Future.


The group will comprise more than 5,000 people and brings together three of the BBC's existing divisions - Television; Drama, Entertainment and Children's; and Factual and Learning.


The creation of BBC Vision will help the BBC deliver 360 degree content creation (that is, creating and commissioning content for all the different ways of delivering it to the audience, including via the Internet) and help to prepare to meet the audiences' requirements in an increasingly on-demand world.


The commissioning system is designed to bring the best ideas to the screen, including the best of independent production, backed by the new Window of Creative Competition.


Appointments already announced by Jana Bennett for BBC Vision include Peter Salmon (Chief Creative Officer), who rejoined the BBC this week, and Jane Tranter (Controller, BBC Fiction Multimedia Commissioning). Richard Deverell remains Controller of BBC Children's.


Further key appointments will be announced in the coming weeks.


BBC Press Office





Category: BBC
Date: 04.10.2006
Printable version

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy