Good news for the U.K.’s animation industry: the BBC has pledged to triple what it spends on animation for the 7–12 age group. The policy was announced by Patricia Hidalgo, director of BBC Children’s and Education, at the Manchester Animation Festival (which is running onsite and online until November 30).
The pubcaster will aim to broadcast three original British animated shows for this demographic per year; it currently airs only one. That number will start growing in around 18 months, and the BBC is now looking to acquire and pre-buy new content. Commissioning for preschool animation will stay at the same level.
Hidalgo didn’t give specific budget figures. Last year, the content budget for the channel CBBC, which targets kids aged 6–17, was £58 million (USD$78M). CBeebies, which is aimed at younger children children, got £25M ($33.8M).