PBS UK launching in November
A PBS-branded channel will debut in the UK on November 1 via the Sky Digital platform, with the regional television premiere of Ken Burns and Lynn Novick’s three-part doc Prohibition (pictured) as part of the launch schedule.
The channel will be called PBS and will initially be available in 10 million homes via Sky Digital, where it will be housed within the entertainment section of Sky’s electronic program guide, or EPG. Negotiations with Virgin Media for carriage are continuing.
Other programming to be featured on the UK PBS channel includes the ‘NOVA,’ ‘Frontline’ and ‘American Experience’ strands.
The channel is a joint venture between Canadian-born entrepreneur and venture capitalist David Lyons of Quadra Group and PBS Distribution.
“It is a tremendous honor to be tasked with introducing one of America’s most trusted brands to the British public,” said PBS UK general manager Richard Kingsbury. “Many will have watched PBS shows acquired by other channels without realizing it, but with the vast majority of PBS’s back catalog still to premiere in the UK, there is a tremendous wealth of epic true stories available to craft a highly valued channel here.”
Kingsbury joined PBS UK from UKTV where he was channel head of its Yesterday and Good Food channels. He is also bringing over at least two other UKTV staffers – Katie Gold as head of programming and Rebecca Edwards as head of PR and marketing.