Channel 4’s chief creative officer Jay Hunt is to leave the broadcaster and has dropped out of the race to become its new chief executive.
It’s thought her decision has been brought about by the Conservative Party’s pledge to move the broadcaster outside of London.
Hunt has been with Channel 4 since January 2011 and was instrumental in luring The Great British Bake Off to the broadcaster.
Under her leadership, Channel 4 was named The Edinburgh TV Festival Channel of the Year in 2014 and 2016.
In March, it was announced Channel 4’s chief executive David Abraham is to leave after seven years in charge.
Hunt said: “I’ve loved being at Channel 4 and am incredibly proud of how far we have come creatively. From the multiple Channel of the Year awards to the raft of global hits, we’ve had real success. I’ve been lucky to have a superlative boss in David Abraham and to have been supported by the best commissioning team in the business. I also owe a huge thank you to the brilliant producers, directors, writers and on screen talent who’ve made it such a thrilling time to be at the helm.
“I will continue in post till the end of September and am looking forward to Channel 4 delivering not just an exciting summer of sport but the richest autumn schedule we’ve ever had with big shows from the Great British Bake Off to Electric Dreams. It’ll be business as usual till October.
“Channel 4 is a unique and special place. I’ve really enjoyed leading this phase of its creative renewal and I’ll be cheering the new leadership team on from afar.”
Abraham said: “Jay took on one of the biggest challenges in broadcasting back in 2011 and through immense creativity, courage and determination has delivered magnificently. In recent years the delivery of our remit and our creative output has reached new heights and both I, the staff of Channel 4 and the whole industry owe Jay huge thanks for all she has achieved.”
Channel 4 chair Charles Gurassa added: “Jay has made an outstanding and unique contribution to Channel 4. Under her leadership the Channel has re-established itself as a creative powerhouse; innovative, imaginative and risk taking. My colleagues and I are hugely grateful for all she has achieved and wish her every success in her next venture.”