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Friday, September 10, 1999 Published at 22:29 GMT 23:29 UK

UK: Wales

Controller of BBC Wales to retire

Geraint Talfan Davies said broadcasting in Wales faces great challenges

Geraint Talfan Davies, Controller of BBC Wales, is to retire at the end of the year.

Mr Davies, who is 55, has headed BBC Wales since 1990, having been Director of Programmes at Tyne Tees Television during the late eighties.

He previously spent 12 years in newspapers before joining HTV as Head of News and Current Affairs.

Geraint Talfan Davies: "There are many very important challenges facing broadcasting over the next five years."
He said the last nine years had been "very fulfilling" and that last year in particular had been an exceptional one both for BBC Wales and for Wales.

However, he added: "I have always been clear that I wanted to retire from the BBC while I still have the energy and the appetite to pursue new avenues.

"I shall be very sad to leave such a talented community of people, but I am proud of the fact that our services for Wales are stronger than ever, as is BBC Wales's contribution to the BBC across the UK.

[ image: Geraint Talfan Davies is standing down as BBC Wales controller]
Geraint Talfan Davies is standing down as BBC Wales controller
"It has been a particular honour to be at the helm in Wales when the BBC launched its digital services and to record the setting up of the National Assembly and the BBC's response to the new institution," he added.

Sir John Birt, Director General of the BBC, said: "Geraint Talfan Davies has led BBC Wales with enormous distinction and energy.

"Under his leadership, BBC Wales has been revitalised as a centre for dynamic programme-making and as a cultural patron. A champion of broadcasting in Wales, Geraint has been a true ambassador for the BBC."

Roger Jones, the BBC's National Governor for Wales and chairman of the Broadcasting Council for Wales, praised Mr Davies's "leadership, managerial acumen and editorial flair", which he said had been the driving force for BBC Wales's Welsh and English-language services during "a landmark period in broadcasting history".

Mr Davies is currently chairman of the Institute of Welsh Affairs, which he helped found, and of the Cardiff Bay Arts Trust and the International Film Festival of Wales.

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