YORK could become the new home of Channel 4, if city leaders get their way.

The Government recently asked for views on whether the publicly owned broadcaster should move all or part of its operations out of London. York city council leader Cllr David Carr has confirmed the authority is pushing hard for York Central - the 72 hectare brownfield site behind the station - to be chosen as a new location.

The bid is already backed by both city universities, he said, as well as Make it York and the regional business body the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP).

York Central is an “ideal” location, Cllr Carr said. “It’s sustainable, it’s brownfield, and it’s located right next to the East Coast Mainline - it really fits the bill.”

Next week Conservative Cllr Carr will put forward a motion to all 47 city councillors, asking them to back the city’s bid and agree council staff should work with other enthusiastic partners to bring Channel 4 to Yorkshire.

York is also part of the Leeds City Region LEP, which has joined up with Screen Yorkshire to put it its own bid for Channel 4 to come to the region. Cllr Carr said York council was pushing for York Central to be chosen, but was also backing the wider regional bid.

“We would like it to come to York, but failing that to the Leeds City Region, because we think there would be beneficial spin offs from that.” The consultation responses were submitted within the last two weeks and the authority is now waiting for Government responses.

Roger Marsh, chairman of the Leeds City Region LEP, added:

“Our bid addresses the huge imbalance that’s been allowed to develop, with virtually all investment going into the western side of the UK. This is not a sustainable position and we are confident that working in partnership with Channel 4 our proposals can bring positive impact and benefits to a very wide geographic area, namely the 18.2 million people living on the eastern side of the UK who are currently underrepresented. We are convinced our ambition matches that of Channel 4: we’re both innovative challengers who like to do things differently.” Other cities reportedly bidding for the relocation - including Birmingham, Liverpool and Sheffield.