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UKTV agrees Channel 4 programming deal

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Jamie Oliver launches the second season of his Emmy-award winning 'Food Revolution’ series in Los Angeles, California

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UKTV has signed a "landmark deal" to access more than 350 hours of factual and lifestyle programming from Channel 4, including Time Team, Embarrassing Bodies and Jamie's 30-Minute Meals.

UKTV, the pay-TV broadcaster owned by the BBC and US media giant Scripps Networks, has secured the content for its lifestyle and factual channels, including Home, Good Food and Yesterday.

The 350 hours of popular programming acquired by UKTV includes Embarrassing Bodies and One Born Every Minute for Really; A Place in the Sun: Home or Away and Four in a Bed for Home; Jamie's 30-Minute Meals and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's River Cottage for Good Food; and Time Team for Yesterday.

"UKTV and Channel 4 are successfully collaborating in a number of areas and as the category leaders in lifestyle and factual channels, this deal will enable UKTV to pull further away from its competitors," said UKTV's chief executive Darren Childs.

"UKTV's content deals with the BBC, Channel 4, and now with investment in its own award-winning commissions, continues to strengthen its channel brands and ensure they are the most sought-after destinations on the digital broadcasting landscape."

Channel 4 - which is headed by ex-UKTV boss David Abraham - said that the deal shows its ability to maximise the value of UK rights for independent production companies.

The agreement brings together content from 16 of the UK's leading indie producers.

"I'm delighted that Channel 4 has agreed this deal with UKTV, which is a great example of how we are working closely with our independent production partners to maximise the value of their UK secondary rights," said Channel 4's chief operating officer Anne Bulford.

The first programmes secured through the agreement are scheduled to appear on the relevant UKTV channels from the third quarter of 2012.

UKTV also recently announced plans to invest millions of pounds in original content for comedy channel Gold, including a new series of Yes, Prime Minister.

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