BBC launches new Creative Development Unit in Bristol focused on podcasts

This is an exciting time for all of us in audio production. Everyday new audiences are discovering the joy of podcasts and their appetite for new voices and formats is growing.Clare McGinn
Date: 26.06.2020     Last updated: 26.06.2020 at 10.01
BBC Radio’s in-house production division - previously called BBC Radio & Music Production - will relaunch on Monday as BBC Audio with a new development unit focused on podcasts.

The Creative Development Unit (CDU), based in Bristol, will turbocharge the production division’s podcast ambitions. The CDU team will draw upon the creative and production expertise across BBC Audio’s four production bases to develop landmark podcasts as well as partnerships and co-produced audio projects for the BBC. They will also work with teams and individuals - new to podcasting - on pitching and development.

The new unit, with a core team of four, is led by Clare McGinn who previously ran BBC Audio’s production department in Bristol. It builds on the success of recent BBC Audio podcasts including James Acaster’s Perfect Sounds and The Missing Cryptoqueen for BBC Sounds, Forest 404 and Evil Genius for Radio 4, 13 Minutes To The Moon and Fall Of The Shah for the World Service, and the BBC Earth podcasts for BBC Studios.

Graham Ellis, Controller of BBC Audio, says: "The new unit supplements rather than supplants the development work which goes on every day in our departments and allows us to bring our world class staff together around specific ideas in a way which isn’t limited by structures or genres. Producing brilliant content for the BBC’s radio stations remains at the heart of what we do, but with on-demand content playing an increasingly important part in people’s lives and in our portfolio, we want BBC Audio to be able to maximise all opportunities."

Clare McGinn, Head of Creative Development Unit, BBC Audio, says: "This is an exciting time for all of us in audio production. Everyday new audiences are discovering the joy of podcasts and their appetite for new voices and formats is growing. Through our stories, music, journalism and entertainment BBC Audio teams across the country are perfectly placed to meet that demand. It feels like the right time for us to find new ways of working and new partners to deliver great BBC podcasts to listeners."

BBC Audio produces speech, music and events programming for BBC Radio, The World Service and BBC Sounds. The BBC Audio site showcases new and existing podcasts as well as the full breadth of output and services from music and speech radio to entertainment formats and live events.

BBC Radio commissions content from a huge range of production companies across the UK, including from BBC Audio.

LZ