As a Country In It’s Own Right, the Isle of Man should have it’s own TV News Service.

13th February 2022

The only “Local” and Rgional TV viewers on the Isle of Man get are ITV1 Granada Reports and BBC1 North West Tonight: These Regional TV News- services cover North West England, (mainly the southern half of it, mind) and have news coverage that is 70 to 80% about Greater Manchester, Cheshire and the Liverpool and Wirral areas (ITV1 Granada Reports has the higher proportion of coverage of areas along/ south of the M62 Corridor). The Isle of Man is lucky to get just one item of news-coverage on either of the so-called “Local” TV News services, if viewers there get anything!


It is absoluely amazing that there has not been a major out-cry on the Isle of Man about this state of affairs! The Isle of Man is, in fact, a small country in it’s own right in the Irish Sea- from where the nearest part of North West England is a three-hour ferry journey away, the Port of Heysham in North Lancashire is the nearest point- which is over sixty miles from Douglas but further from the rest of the Isle of Man. Most of North West England is near or over 100 miles from Douglas, there is no way that it could be considered “Local”! The Isle of Man has a population of over 85,000 inhabitants, much more than the population of the Faeroe Islands (at just under 49,162 inhabitants in 2022 ( The Faeroe Islands, in the North Atlantic has it’s own national TV News- service in it’s own language (details here- Kringvarp Føroya: Yet the Isle of Man- with almost double the population- has to contend with national news about the UK and “Local” news that is 90 to 95% about North West England!

It is a truly shocking state of affairs: Whilst I do not believe in State intervention in what could be provided by the Private Sector, there is certainly a need for real Government intervention to ensure that a national Manx TV News- service is set up as soon as possible. Ensuring that BBC1 North West Tonight provides an extra news- report about the Isle of Man is not going to cut the mustard: This is about the Isle of Man being a country which is well-off compared to other countries in the World, yet it does not have it’s own TV News- service, and being seemingly unable to find the resources to fund one! The country has a GDP per Capita of just over $94,500 (US dollars), about £70,000 per annum at current exhange rates, according to most recent figures ( Yet Manx viewers of television just pay Britain’s TV License fee of £159.00 per annum- to watch British TV News!

Of course, there are British TV programmes- soaps like ITV1’s Coronation Street -or BBC1 Match of The Day -and it is possible that if Manx viewers stopped paying the British TV License fee that they would lose those services. But Manx viewers are certainly not getting Value-for-Money, and good-quality Regional and Local News is actually a vital Public Service. Folk living on the Isle of Man- a small country in it’s own right- want news about the Isle of Man! They are not really interested in stabbings in Greater Manchester or student protests in Liverpool, because that is not relevant to their day- to- day lives on the Isle of Man.

In no other country in the World do viewers of TV News pay another country to get “Local” TV news about a distant Region in that other country, not their own!! Folk in the Channel Islands do pay the British TV License, but they have their own Regional News service- ITV1 Channel News (here: But that is not the case for folk on the Isle of Man where 95% of the “Local” News is about North West England– mostly Manchester, Merseyside and Cheshire to be fair.

There are ways for the Manx Government to help bring about a proper Manx TV News- service without tax-payer funds: They could make it ultra-easy for local TV broadcasters to set up a TV- service by allowing lotteries to raise funds for it, by allowing local businesses to give money to it, allowing product- placement and sponsoring of such a news- service. Such a vital Manx news- service could be given Charitable Status so that local folk are encouraged to support it, in view of the fact that the venture might not be profitable.

The Manx Government could- and should- get tough with TV Licensing (based in North East England), and get tough with the BBC- to insist that the BBC set up a new BBC1 Region serving just the Isle of Man as a condition of handing over all License fee funds as before: In short, the Manx Government could get some courage to stand up for Manx viewers of “Local News” and make continued payment of BBC License Fee money contingent upon some of the money handed over by Manx citizens being used to provide a bespoke Manx TV News- service. If the BBC threaten to cut BBC TV News-services to the Isle of Man the Manx Government should threaten to decree that that £159 per annum per Manx household is paid to their own Manx TV Licensing Authority instead. Such a new Manx TV Licensing Authority will certainly be able to use some of that money to negotiate continued watching of ITV programmes, Freeview and- indeed some BBC services anyway. Half of the remainder can be put towards a new Manx TV News service!

It is likely that the BBC, threatened with the loss of almost £8 million from Manx TV License payers at a time of British Government- enforced financial constraint upon the BBC will back down, and explore how to set up a BBC Isle of Man TV service providing Manx- only news. But it is certainly time for the Manx Government to realise how shocking this is, Manx viewers have to scrabble about on You Tube to find the only Manx News service that there is which is, namely, Isle of Man TV: Website link here

Certainly, if you live on the Isle of Man and have a computer, with Internet then you should boycott both BBC1 North West Tonight and ITV1 Granada Reports to watch Isle of Man TV. If you do this, be sure to email BBC North West at: and ITV1 Granada at: to explain why you are getting your own Isle of Man News off You Tube! Tell these Regional TV News programmers that you don’t want your “Local News” to be 95% about another country over three hours away by ferry!

Then you must write a letter to the Chief Minister of the Manx Government, The Honorable Alfred Cannan to explain how intolerable you find getting “Local News” about Greater Manchester, Liverpool and Cheshire is when the Isle of Man is a country in its own right. Demand that he stands up to the BBC and the British TV Licensing Authority to demand the BBC set up a special BBC1 Isle of Man News- service or else lose License Fee money from Manx tax-payers. Demand that he then hold firm in the face of the threatened loss of BBC News- services and promise to set up a separate Manx TV Licensing Authority to use money from Manx TV License- payers to pay for a Manx TV News- service catering for Manx viewers’ needs. Write, don’t just send an e-mail (which can be intercepted by secretaries) and mark your letter URGENT, so that the Chief Minister knows how important this is. The Chief Minister’s details are here:

The Honourable Alfred Cannan

Chief Minister of the Isle of Man

Office of the Chief Minister

Third Floor

Government Office

Bucks Road


Isle of Man


Published by northwestisnorthwest

My name is Ian Pennell and I am a freelance Book-keeper: I live near Alston, in the North Pennines in north-east Cumbria. I have friends who live in northern North West England - near Lancaster (which is where I went to University and used to live until 17 years ago) and in other parts of Cumbria. I have two Website Campaigns that seek to promote more localised Regional TV coverage for large rural areas across the North of North West England and North East England. . A big problem is that the Regional Television Bulletins for the North West covers the southern third of the Region about 90% (plus a part of Derbyshire which is NOT the North West of England), covers the middle third of North West England poorly and covers the northern third of North West England not at all! When I was studying at Lancaster University, I used to watch BBC1 North West Tonight because it covered areas up around where I was brought up- in northern Cumbria as well as more immediately locally around Lancaster. Then I came home one day, turned on BBC1 North West Tonight wondering why they were silent on Cumbria and discovered why: Most of Cumbria had been chopped off the weather-map! . People living in the westernmost part of North West England (around St. Bees Head) have local BBC news on their televisions which is 90% about North East England! In rural and northern Northumberland too, Regional TV, as is received by viewers, tends too often to be Tyneside/ Wearside/ Teesside- focussed with little news locally. Communities in North Northumberland have strong links across the Border into south-east Scotland and towards Edinburgh but none of the Regional TV News- services serving Northumberland today ever goes across the Scottish Border for significant happenings of interest to North Northumbrians. I have also done walking in the area, including around the Cheviots in the past- and the Northumberland/ Scottish Borders/ East and Mid Lothian area is vast- but it is largely overlooked by mainstream Regional TV! . North Yorkshire, the largest county in England also falls in the gaps between coverage from BBC Look North (NE/ Cumbria) or ITV1 News Tyne Tees in the north of the county, and the Leeds-based BBC1 and ITV1 Regional TV- services in the south of the county: North Yorkshire is a huge, yet beautiful county, which I have visited and explored in the past, yet is poorly covered in Regional TV. . Based near Alston, near the Cumbria/ Northumberland boundary I am well-placed to discuss Regional TV in all these large rural areas, in which collectively some two million folk live, yet they are poorly covered by the Regional TV News- services set up to serve them. These huge areas are an hour to two hours' drive from where I live: North Lancashire and South/ West Cumbria are to the south-west, Northumberland and the Scottish Borders and Lothian are to the north and north-east, and North Yorkshire is to the south-east of my home near Alston. I am well-placed to draw attention to deficiencies in Regional TV coverage for folk in all these areas. The North Pennines, where I live, is arguably another large area that touches on the other three where Regional TV coverage falls through the gaps completely (and that is despite the North Pennines running north to south down the middle of the BBC1 NE/ Cumbria Region). . In two websites, one for northern North West England and the Isle of Man (a country in it's own right that does not have it's own TV service!), and another Website focussing on Northumberland, North Yorkshire and the North Pennines I make the point that Regional TV that informs viewers of important things in their local area is a Public Service, funding for which should be given a higher priority (and if necessary via statute through the BBC's Charter), than funding for Soaps, Films or Sport- which are for leisure. I also give viewers the tools to fight effectively for better- and more geographic-appropriate Regional TV where they live- and to seek it through alternative (often little-known) local TV services, some of which may only be available on the Internet.

3 thoughts on “As a Country In It’s Own Right, the Isle of Man should have it’s own TV News Service.

  1. Yes one days we all work today we Isle of Man have own bbc

    I be protest online to manx public and to all 30 of Tynwald and to all public elected MHk = members of hosue of keys and MLC = members of Legislative Council on bbc

    Lot say same on Island bad what bbc up to not right lot on manx government now let see what there do last government let bbc tell them lies on them make a bbc Isle of Man to tynwald then never happened

    even Big journalists of north west Kown about me about it lol then there hid / covering up lack service on Isle of Man

    1 bbc reported for hole island and lol can not even covered big story’s of day live / record

    like last week tynwald had manx budget speech and debate now was live on bbc online no was not Porten things like that shuld be on bbc live

    And last 3 days be big storm in Isle of Man have bbc be covered story with full updates on roads and travel and wather updates nop not even have full 24h map on Jsut Isle of Man as wather one part Island not same as north or south or west some days be 4 different weather different parts of island

    I lol bbc say check Local bbc radio for updates mmm not in isle of man as not a bbc radio for Isle of Man

    Not even manx government trust them with TT live yes Isle of Man TT be live online first time in 100 yaers history that news not even post on bbc tv news

    Good job that 5 yaer public broadcast service Committee report on it way
    That report take in all public and independent bordcast

    Last time bbc say to tynwald go make a bbc tv output for Isle of Man 5 yaers later nothing happen so Guess this time the broadcast service Committee will be on to bbc hope something happened think time make own bbc call it something like MBC or IOMBC or have own bbc Isle of Man

    Think time that we all joint up take on bbc both sides of the Irish sea in Isle of Man and UK

    1. I totally agree. This Website will back 110% any campaign on the Isle of Man for Manx viewers to get their own Manx TV News service. Manx viewers do need to write to the Manx Government to demand something is done about it, whilst boycotting both BBC1 North West Tonight and ITV1 Granada Reports!

  2. Yes thanks Sporting campaigns some where like Isle of Man get a pbs tv

    Thanks I man in Isle of Man that Sharing and try get more and more people fight on this

    There is bunch Manx people the Manx viewers not happy and are write / chat mm to the Manx Government lot demand something be done about it by MHk

    but MHk go to bbc bunch times and then there say go do something but nothing happeneds then back start

    what lol is was manx man some from Isle of Man that help start bbc 100 yaers ago

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