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Is Lord Coe the ‘suitable candidate’ for the BBC Trust?

Applications to become Chairman of the BBC Trust close on Friday. Plenty of noise was made early on the race about the need for a totally committed successor, after Chris Patten stood accused of not giving the £110,000 a year job his full attention.

The official job specification published by the Cabinet Office stated:

The time commitment for the Trust Chairman has been 3-4 days per week (or 12-16 days per month).

Late in the day though, a source familiar with the selection process points out that an additional sentence has been added to the advert:

However, suitable candidates able to offer a lesser time commitment will also be considered.

That wasn’t there when the job first went up. Intriguingly, BBC insiders refer to it as the ‘Seb line’.

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Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from Westminster and beyond. Email tips to or message @MrSteerpike

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