Pearson TV to back BBC head of documentaries and history's plans for new production venture
BBC head of documentaries and history Paul Hamann is to finalise a deal with Pearson TV in the next few weeks, setting up a new indie as a first step towards chief executive Richard Eyre's vision of an 'indie village', writesGeorgina Lipscomb

Hamann is close to winning backing from Pearson TV, part of the RTL Group, to set up a production outfit in a move expected since last year. An RTL spokesman said: 'Talks are continuing but nothing has been concluded yet.' No further details of the new production

outfit have been confirmed.

Pearson TV announced plans to forge alliances with a number of indies in April last year in a bid to create a 'production village'.

Hamann's future at the BBC has been in doubt since director general Greg Dyke's restructure in April last year.

According to sources, he will remain on the BBC payroll until March but it is unclear what work, if any, he is still carrying out for the corporation. He is also thought to be attempting to poach BBC staff to take with him.

A BBC spokeswoman said: 'Hamann is working out his notice. He's still in talks with a number of people and won't be announcing anything until next week.'

Hamann is also understood to have talked to Carlton Productions director of programmes Steve Hewlett about backing a venture.