British Museum Launches On-Demand TV Channel via U.K. Telecom Giant

bt vision - H 2012

BT's pay TV service BT Vision will carry the network, which will offer documentaries, lectures and short films tied to exhibitions.


LONDON - The British Museum is pushing into the TV space. The famous cultural institution based here on Tuesday unveiled a carriage deal with U.K. telecom giant BT for an on-demand channel dedicated to the museum.

Terms, such as the length, of the deal for the network, which will be carried on the telecom firm's pay TV service BT Vision, weren't disclosed. The channel, which will offer documentaries, lectures and short films tied to current exhibitions, will be available to all BT Vision subscribers for free starting immediately.

The partners said that the British Museum is the U.K.’s leading visitor attraction. They didn't mention if the channel would be branded or get a name down the line.

Topics of documentaries planned for the channel will include "Journeys of Faith," "Great Leaders," "Stories of the World," "Contemporary Artists" and "Shakespeare."

The museum already offers video content through its web site, a dedicated YouTube channel and social media, but the BT arrangement marks its first push to offer an on-demand TV channel. It is also the first time BT Vision has offered its customers this type of channel.

Said Marc Watson, CEO of BT Vision: “Our customers can visit the museum without leaving their armchairs and see captivating stories of humanity, from civilizations, which disappeared thousands of years ago, to the world we live in today.”

Joanna Mackle, director of public engagement at the British Museum, said: “BT Vision is a wonderful way to widen access to some fascinating documentaries from the British Museum. We are keen to share our content freely and as widely to allow as many people as possible access to the collections and the wonderful stories it tells.”

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