FINALLY, our great organisations seem to be waking up to the fact that there is intelligent life outside London.

In an extremely welcome move, the Government is sprinkling civil service jobs all over the country, including, of course, bringing about 1,000 Treasury jobs to Darlington.

Now the BBC is joining in, moving jobs out of the capital and even creating a bespoke BBC1 for the north.

The tone of the BBC has changed since parts of it decamped to Salford, although it is still extremely galling to be told that Look North local news is not yet available on BBC1 High Definition and we in the provinces have to switch channels or watch an orange screen for 10 minutes while a kettledrum band plays. Curiously, BBC London is available on local hi-def, which perhaps shows where priorities lie.

The BBC, like the Government, does need to reflect the whole country. Whether dropping a handful of digital reporters into the regions and giving the BBC1 continuity announcements in a northern accent will do the job remains to be seen.

And The Northern Echo is part of a network of local and regional newsgatherers which already exists across the country. Newspapers and websites – with soaring hits – and commercial radio and TV stations are so deeply embedded within their communities that they are part of their fabric, and, like the Echo, have been covering, and championing, them for years – more than a century-and-a-half, in our case.

It would not be right if the BBC, subsidised by an enormous and compulsory tax, came along and created a superficial local service which harmed the in-depth work which has been going on for generations.