Channel 4 Opens Door To Tees Valley As New Partnership Forged

Business & Invest | Published on: 12th October 2023

Creative talent from across the Tees Valley will get the chance to meet commissioning bosses as part of new partnership forged with Channel 4.

The £11.4million North East Screen Industries Partnership was backed by £4.5million of investment from the Tees Valley Mayor and Combined Authority.

The agreement, delivered by North East Screen, aims to capitalise on wider commitments to help fund TV production and talent development across the region’s creative sectors.

Now Channel 4 have agreed a collaborative plan with the Partnership to forge closer ties with production companies in the North East, boost training and open up career opportunities to a wider range of people. 

An open day will be held in Darlington on Wednesday, 25 October, where freelancers, independent creators and stakeholders will be able to build a relationship with Channel 4 commissioners. 

The open day with North East Screen will see virtual sessions and in person activities from 1pm at the Darlington Hippodrome with opportunities for 1-2-1 chats with Channel 4 Digital, Drama & Comedy commissioners.

Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “We know Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool have always harboured hot beds of creative talent – and it’s wonderful the rest of the country is now sitting up and taking notice of what we have to offer. 

I’m proud we support North East Screen and the new partnership is already reaping rewards and helping to steer more film projects into our region.

“This is another great chance for our vibrant independent creators to perhaps get that make or break meeting they wouldn’t have got in the past.

“We’re transforming our region with good quality, well-paid jobs in the chemical and Net Zero industries of tomorrow but keeping our creative talent close to home is also vitally important – and it’s great to see closer ties with national significant bodies such as Channel 4.” 

The Tees Valley has seen a rise in the number of film and TV projects taking place in recent years with the Northern Film and TV Studios, in Hartlepool, often providing a cutting edge base.

The overall aim of this new Channel 4 partnership with North East Screen is to support the growth of independent production in the wider region.

Sinead Rocks, Managing Director Nations & Regions at Channel 4, said: “As part of 4 All the UK we have regularly focused the different resources and initiatives on specific areas to help grow the production capacity. 

“We know that there is enormous potential for the screen industries in the North East, and this collaboration with NESIP should provide tangible value and have real impact to help realise that potential.” 

Alison Gwynn, Chief Executive of North East Screen, said: “This is an exciting statement of intent from Channel 4 to work closely with us and NESIP to provide more opportunities for our locally based indies, talent and crew. Channel 4 are a great broadcaster doing some really interesting work developing content and engaging audiences across linear and digital platforms.” 

Places for the in-person open day session are limited to independent production companies in the region. For more information on the open day, contact: [email protected] 

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