Ofcom has received 57 applications to run 21 local TV stations across the UK.
In May, organisations were invited to apply for licences in key towns and cities. The application process for these initial licences has now closed.
Bidders for the local TV stations include the Evening Standard (London), STV (Edinburgh and Glasgow), City TV Broadcasting (Birmingham) and Archant (Norwich). Made Television and Canadian Channel Zero have submitted applications for multiple regions.
Commenting on the number of applications, Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt said: "This definitively proves the sceptics wrong—not only is there demand for local TV, there are large numbers of entrepreneurial companies willing to invest in meeting it.
"This first round of licensing will see 19 towns and cities get their own dedicated local station. We can all look forward to a new generation of local TV services coming to our screens next year, strengthening local identity, supporting local business and providing jobs throughout the city."
Ofcom will now start assessing applications.
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