Regional Development Agency Advantage West Midlands has agreed to pay £50,000 to bring the BBC Sports Personality of the Year programme to Birmingham.

The subsidy will bridge a funding gap and enable recording to take place at the National Exhibition Centre in December, the first time the programme will have moved from London in its 53-year history.

The event is understood to be one of several high-profile television programmes targeted by the NEC, with backing from Advantage West Midlands and Marketing Birmingham.

The NEC beat off competition from venues across the country to win the right to hold the BBC's annual commemoration of sporting excellence, which is seen by millions of viewers across the world.

An AWM spokesman said the return for Birmingham and the West Midlands in terms of positive national and international publicity from the programme would be far in excess of £50,000.

He said the BBC would devote an entire weekend to filming a programme publicising Birmingham as a go-ahead city.

The spokesman added: "We were asked about six months ago if we could assist the NEC Group and we were pleased to earmark £50,000 from our regional marketing budget for that purpose.

"The BBC Sports Personality of the Year programme will provide a terrific opportunity to showcase the wide range of attractions that Birmingham has to offer and we are more than happy to help the NEC secure such a prestigious event."

For the first time the event will be open to the public. At least 3,000 tickets will go on sale later this month for the show.