BBC's Mark Byford to step down in spring

Deputy director general latest casualty of spending cuts

LONDON -- The BBC's deputy director general Mark Byford has become the latest casualty of spending cuts at the £3.8 billion ($6 billion) a year public broadcaster.

The 52-year old executive will step down next spring, after more than 30 years at the BBC, and will not be replaced.

Byford, who has retained a low-profile as deputy DG, has headed the BBC's journalism school and temporarily took the helm as acting director general in 2002 when the then director general Greg Dyke and BBC chairman Gavyn Davies resigned after a row with the Government.

The cut backs come as part of a pledge to cut senior jobs, made by BBC director general Mark Thompson.

But Byford's departure will not be without consolation: he is in line for a pension thought to be worth £1 million ($1.6 million) -- an astonishing amount for a British public employee.
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