BSkyB Names Antonia Hurford-Jones Permanent Director of Sky Living Channel
LONDON - Antonia Hurford-Jones has been named the permanent director of BSkyB's Sky Living channel, with the company now also starting to look for a new head of its Sky 1 network.
Stuart Murphy, director of entertainment channels at Sky, made the announcement in a staff email on Friday. He has been in charge of Sky 1. But since his promotion earlier this year, he has been overseeing all of the pay TV giant's entertainment networks - Sky 1, Sky Living, Sky Atlantic, Sky Arts, Sky 2, Challenge and Pick TV.
"Today we will be advertising for a new director of Sky 1, who will report into me," Murphy said in a staff memo. "We are looking for a big hitter."
The focus of his memo, however, was on Sky Living where Hurford-Jones has been tapped as the channel's full-time leader. After the departure of previous channel head Jane Johnson this summer, she has been running Sky Living as acting director. Murphy said Friday that she has now accepted the position as permanent director. She previously worked as commissioning editor, entertainment for BSkyB.
Sky Living previously focused on female viewers, but it has recently expanded its offers to reach a broader audience.
"Antonia has been at Sky just over a year and in that time has been crucial to our collective success," said Murphy. "She’s been in her current role since the end of July, and despite a tough competitive environment, has shown she has what it takes to make Sky Living a real destination brand for our customers."
He added: "Shows such as Elementary - the channel’s highest rating drama - Chicago Fire, Sing Date, Love Machine and the NBC co-commissioned Dracula give an early sense of how she is combining big, broad, stylish brands with cheeky, mischievous entertainment, and this is just the start. Her U.K. commissions in scripted and factual are coming down the line and promise to be absolutely fantastic."