Chief executive of Royal Opera House appointed director general of BBC

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Tony Hall to take over top job

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Tony HallPhoto: Johann Persson/Royal Opera House

The chief executive of the Royal Opera House, Tony Hall, will take up the post of BBC director general in March 2013.

Hall, whose full title is Lord Hall of Birkenhead, will take over from acting director general, Tim Davie, who has been filling the post since the resignation of George Entwistle, who resigned after just 54 days in the job.

Chairman of the BBC Trust, Lord Patten, said: 'Tony Hall has been an insider and is currently an outsider. As an ex-BBC man he understands how the corporation's culture and behaviour make it, at its best, the greatest broadcaster in the world.

'And from his vantage point outside the BBC, he understands the sometimes justified criticisms of the corporation – that it can be inward-looking and on occasions too institutional.' 

Before becoming chief executive at the Royal Opera House in 2001, Lord Hall was chief executive of BBC News. While at the BBC he oversaw the launch of Radio 5 Live, BBC News 24 and BBC Parliament.

While in the top job at the Opera House, Lord Hall introduced a department devoted to new work and acquired the DVD production and distribution company, Opus Arte.

Culture secretary, Maria Miller praised Lord Hall for his 'very strong track record in successfully leading iconic organisations.'

Lord Hall was made chair of the board for the Cultural Olympiad in 2009 and was made a cross-bench peer in 2010.