BBC Children’s head of content Cheryl Taylor is set to leave the pubcaster by Easter next year. She has opted for voluntary redundancy as part of a BBC restructuring scheme.
Over the next few months, she will help Patricia Hidalgo, who was hired as director of Children’s & Education earlier this year, decide on a succession and handover plan. In an internal email, Hidalgo said details of the plan will be announced in due course.
Taylor is leaving to spend more time with her elderly parents, kids and husband. “I’ve loved seeing more of them all during lockdown, and they mean the world to me,” said Taylor in an email to staff. “So although I’m going to miss you all so much, this feels like the right decision and also a positive decision—albeit at a rather strange moment in time for us all.”
Taylor joined the Beeb’s Children’s & Education department as controller of CBBC in 2012, and has since taken on commissioning responsibilities for both CBBC and CBeebies. In her time as head of content, Taylor has ordered many titles for both channels, including JoJo and GranGran, The Next Step and Malory Towers. She has also built up the teen content offering on iPlayer (Mimi on a Mission, Stacey Dooley) and expanded brands such as Mr. Tumble, Horrible Histories and The Dumping Ground brands. Most recently, Taylor played a big role in commissioning lockdown content—the BBC ordered more than 25 new shows in the spring and summer this year.
News of Taylor’s planned departure follows several big shakeups for the BBC Children’s exec team in the last two years, starting with the exit of Jackie Edwards at the beginning of 2019. Sarah Muller filled Edwards’ role as head of acquisitions and animation in April 2019. And more recently, BBC Children’s director Alice Webb announced she was leaving the pubcaster in spring 2020, with Hidalgo brought in to replace her.