Iconic Sheffield building could house Channel 4 HQ

Park Hill flats could be rebranded with the familiar Channel 4 logo if Sheffield wins the bid to bring the broadcaster to the city.

Tuesday, 1st May 2018, 1:51 pm
Updated Tuesday, 1st May 2018, 3:01 pm
Richard Caborn, chairman of the Channel 4 bid committee

The “streets in the sky” complex is one of three city centre locations which could house the Channel 4 headquarters if Sheffield is chosen. The building is seen as an ideal location as it’s iconic, has plenty of space and is next to the M1 and train station.

The idea was unveiled at the Showroom Cinema where Sheffield’s bid committee met with digital and creative firms. A dozen other cities are also competing and Sheffield has admitted its an “underdog”.

Richard Caborn, chairman of the Channel 4 bid committee

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The broadcaster wants to open a new national HQ and two new smaller creative hubs in the regions, marking the biggest change in its 35 year history. It would move 300 of its 800 staff out of London - currently it only employs about 30 people outside the capital.

The 5,000 word bids need to be submitted by May 11 and a shortlist will be announced at the end of May. Channel 4 executives will spend a couple of days in each shortlisted city in June before the winner is announced in October.

Richard Caborn, chairman of Sheffield’s bid committee, said the city had “distinctly different characteristics” to the other places.

“We are a unique city and we are bidding for a unique organisation. Channel 4 fits the DNA of this city. They try to break boundaries and we believe Sheffield encapsulates that as a city. We are a good fit.

“Channel 4 wants to live outside the box and we can offer that quirkiness. They want to be known as a big innovator and we can be that catalyst.

“Channel 4 would be a big fish in a small pond but they could make a huge difference here. They would have a major impact on the growth of creative and digital industries.”

There is stiff competition from a number of other cities including Birmingham, Leeds, Hull, Liverpool, Bristol and Manchester.