Channel 4’s Director of Programmes, Ian Katz has promoted Alf Lawrie (pictured0 to Head of Factual Entertainment, and Stephen Lyle to Head of Sport.

Alf Lawrie will oversee the Factual Entertainment slate across the Channel 4 portfolio and lead the Factual Entertainment commissioning team – reporting to Deputy Director of Programmes, Kelly Webb-Lamb.

Lawrie is currently Commissioning Editor, Specialist Factual and he has worked on a range of popular factual programming having previously helped launch new formats including The Apprentice, Hunted and The Face. Prior to joining Channel 4 in 2017, he served as Executive Producer on The Island.

At Channel 4 he has been responsible for SAS: Who Dares Wins; Levison Woods’ travelogue, From Russia To Iran: Crossing the Wild Frontier; and The Secret Life Of 5 Year Olds: Suffrage Special; as well as the forthcoming series about South American cartels, Inside The Narcos. He will take up his position in June, staying in Specialist Factual until then to deliver his current projects.

Deputy Director of Programmes, Kelly Webb-Lamb said: “Alf is one of the rare people in telly whose experience spans the breadth of what we do in Channel 4 Fact Ent. From wrangling talent like Naomi Campbell, Alan Sugar, Gerry Robinson and Bear Grylls on huge Fact Ent juggernauts to documentary series about Longleat for BBC1 and triplets for ITV, the breadth of his talent is proven in his track record. He is one of TV’s good guys – a brave creative leader with wit and mischief, and an instinct for the popular which will help take the department on the next turn of the wheel.”

Stephen Lyle steps into the new role of Head of Sport and he will report into Head of Entertainment and Live Events, Ed Havard. As commissioning editor for sport and Head of F1 since 2015, he has commissioned coverage of the Paralympics, Women’s Euros and Formula One. Previously Lyle was Series Editor of BBC Match of the Day 2 and Programme Editor on Match of the Day. He received a Royal Television Society Award for Best Live Sports Programme for the 2013 World Athletics Championships for BBC where he was Programme Editor and a BAFTA in 2009 for Best Live Sports Programme, as Senior Producer. He has also written and produced documentaries including Usain Bolt: The Fastest Man Who Ever Lived, The Last Taboo (Sport and Homophobia) and Botham, The Legend of 81. He will take up his new role with immediate effect.

Ed Havard, Head of Entertainment and Live Events said: “Steve has played a key role in the recent boom of sport on Channel 4, from the Paralympics to Formula One. His promotion to Head of Sport will enable us to build on this success as we look to grow our sport slate even further, including the recent acquisition of the Rugby European Champion’s Cup. He is a hugely talented and creative commissioner and I’m delighted he is taking on this role as our ambition for sport on the Channel continues to grow.”

Staff Reporter

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