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Purnell to rejoin BBC; Davie to take over at Worldwide

Former UK Labour government culture secretary James Purnell is to re-join the BBC as director of strategy and digital under new director-general Tony Hall.

Purnell will start his new role on March 20. Acting director-general Tim Davie will become director of Global and chief executive of BBC Worldwide, effective April 2. Director of news Helen Boaden will become director of radio, the role previously taken by Davie.

Purnell, who left politics in 2010, currently works for production company Rare Day and the Boston Consulting group. From 1995-7 he was head of corporate planning at the BBC under former director-general John Birt.

“I am building a senior team that will define the BBC and public service broadcasting for the next decade. It will be a team that is made up of outstanding talent from outside the BBC combined with the best people from within,” said Hall.“There will be more changes over the coming months and there is a lot of hard work ahead but today’s appointments are the first steps in delivering that vision.”