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Communications Act 2003

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

The Gaelic Media Service

208The Gaelic Media Service

(1)The body established for the purposes of section 183 of the 1990 Act (financing of programmes in Gaelic out of the Gaelic Television Fund) is hereby renamed Seirbheis nam Meadhanan Gàidhlig (the Gaelic Media Service).

(2)References in any instrument or other document to Comataidh Craolaidh Gaidhlig or to the Gaelic Broadcasting Committee are to be construed accordingly.

(3)For subsection (4) of that section there shall be substituted—

(3B)The functions of the Service shall be to secure that a wide and diverse range of high quality programmes in Gaelic are broadcast or otherwise transmitted so as to be available to persons in Scotland.

(4)The Service may—

(a)make grants out of the Fund, or

(b)otherwise apply it,

for any of the purposes of carrying out their functions or for any purpose connected with the carrying out of those functions.

(4A)In carrying out their functions, the Service may finance, or engage in, any of the following—

(a)the making of programmes in Gaelic with a view to those programmes being broadcast or otherwise transmitted so as to be available to persons in Scotland;

(b)the provision of training for persons employed, or to be employed, in connection with the making of programmes in Gaelic to be so broadcast or otherwise transmitted;

(c)research into the types of programmes in Gaelic that members of the Gaelic-speaking community would like to be broadcast or otherwise transmitted.

(4B)But the Service are not to be entitled, for the purpose of carrying out their functions, to provide—

(a)a Channel 3 service;

(b)Channel 4;

(c)Channel 5;

(d)a national sound broadcasting service;

(e)a national digital sound programme service; or

(f)a television multiplex service or a radio multiplex service.

(4)For subsection (9) of that section there shall be substituted—

(9)In this section, section 183A and Schedule 19—

  • “Channel 3 service”, “Channel 4” and “Channel 5” each has the same meaning as in Part 1;

  • “national digital sound programme service” has the same meaning as in Part 2 of the Broadcasting Act 1996;

  • “national sound broadcasting service” means a sound broadcasting service within the meaning of Part 3 which, under subsection (4)(a) of section 245 of the Communications Act 2003, is a national service for the purposes of that section;

  • “Gaelic” means the Gaelic language as spoken in Scotland;

  • “programme” includes any item included in a programme service;

  • “radio multiplex service” has the same meaning as in Part 2 of the Broadcasting Act 1996;

  • “the Service” means the body established under subsection (3) and known as Seirbheis nam Meadhanan Gàidhlig (the Gaelic Media Service);

  • “television multiplex service” has the meaning given by section 241(1) of the Communications Act 2003 to a multiplex service within the meaning of Part 1 of the Broadcasting Act 1996;

  • and a reference to being available to persons in Scotland includes a reference to being available both to persons in Scotland and to others.

209Membership of the Service

After section 183 of the 1990 Act there shall be inserted—

183AMembership of the Gaelic Media Service

(1)The Service shall consist of not more than twelve members.

(2)The members of the Service are to be appointed by OFCOM

(3)OFCOM must appoint one of the members to be the chairman of the Service.

(4)The approval of the Secretary of State is required for the appointment of a person as a member of the Service, and for the appointment of a member as their chairman.

(5)The members of the Service must include—

(a)a member nominated by the BBC;

(b)a member nominated by Highlands and Islands Enterprise; and

(c)a member nominated by Bòrd Gàidhlig na h-Alba (the Gaelic Development Agency).

(6)When appointing members of the Service, OFCOM must have regard to—

(a)the desirability of having members of the Service who are proficient in written and spoken Gaelic; and

(b)any guidance issued by the Secretary of State for the purposes of this section.

(7)OFCOM must secure, so far as practicable, that the membership of the Service is such that the interests of each of the following are adequately represented—

(a)the holders of licences to provide regional Channel 3 services for areas wholly in Scotland;

(b)the holders of licences to provide regional Channel 3 services in respect of which determinations under section 184(4)(b) are for the time being in force;

(c)the independent television and radio production industries in Scotland;

(d)other persons and bodies concerned with the promotion and use of the Gaelic language, including those concerned with education in Gaelic and in Gaelic culture.

(8)Schedule 19 to this Act shall have effect with respect to the Service.

(9)In this section—

  • “Bòrd Gàidhlig na h-Alba” means the body of that name formed under section 5 of the National Heritage (Scotland) Act 1985;

  • “regional Channel 3 service” has the same meaning as in Part 1.

(10)The Secretary of State may by order amend the reference in subsection (5) to Bòrd Gàidhlig na h-Alba (the Gaelic Development Agency)—

(a)by substituting a reference to another body formed under section 5 of the National Heritage (Scotland) Act 1985 with functions relating to the promotion of Gaelic; or

(b)for the purpose of giving effect to a change to the name of the body referred to in that subsection.

(11)An order under this section shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

210Supplementary provisions about the Service

(1)Schedule 19 to the 1990 Act (supplementary provisions about the Gaelic Broadcasting Committee) shall be amended as follows.

(2)In paragraph 2 (tenure of office and remuneration)—

(a)in sub-paragraph (1), for “sub-paragraph (2)” there shall be substituted “sub-paragraphs (1A) and (2)”;

(b)after sub-paragraph (1) there shall be inserted—

(1A)A person is not to be appointed as a member of the Service for a term of more than four years (but a person so appointed shall be eligible for re-appointment at the end of his term of office).

(3)In paragraph 7 (employees of the Committee), after sub-paragraph (3) there shall be inserted—

(4)A person who is an employee of the Service is not to be eligible to be appointed as a member of the Service.

(4)After paragraph 8 (financial provision) there shall be inserted—

8A(1)The Service must pay all their receipts to OFCOM.

(2)OFCOM must hold amounts received by them under this paragraph to the credit of the Gaelic Broadcasting Fund (and, accordingly, those amounts are not to be regarded as forming part of OFCOM’s revenues).

(5)In paragraph 12 (annual reports), after sub-paragraph (1) there shall be inserted—

(1A)The report must include a statement of how the Service are proposing to carry out their functions during the next financial year.

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