Sunday, November 16, 2008

News from the West Midlands

An update from the Guild's West Midland's branch:

There had been some anxiety in the West Midlands that the BBC review of TV production and their ambition to move programme making out of London might also have meant out of Birmingham. To be seen to put TV production into Salford and Cardiff, the BBC might have raided what little drama Birmingham had left. West Midlands Writers’ Guild joined forces with other unions to lobby MPs and the BBC to keep the daytime drama Doctors in the region.

We wrote officially as the West Midlands branch of The Writers’ Guild and got members to write individually. Additionally, three separate early day motions were put down in Parliament. We are delighted that this effort appears to have been successful as the BBC has now announced that Doctors has been re-commissioned from Birmingham for a further three years.

The West Midlands Branch of The Writers’ Guild has now been active since the spring. In March there was a lively meeting with Jeremy Howe, the commissioning editor for Radio 4, attended by around 60 local writers and out of that meeting came the idea for forming a regional branch of the guild. About 80 writers attended what we saw as the inaugural branch meeting. The event was titled ‘Scripting The Future’ and held at Birmingham Rep to discuss the withdrawal of Arts Council funding from the regional drama writing development agency, Script, and to consider thoughts on how the needs of writers might be served in the future.

The Writers’ Guild was involved in three events as part of October’s Birmingham Book Festival. Michael Frayn was in discussion with Guild President, David Edgar; members and officers of the Guild were panellists at ‘The Writers’ Toolkit: an industry day’ (with keynote speech from David Edgar) and a Guild meeting ‘Writing in The Digital Age’ was held jointly with the Royal Television Society.

The next West Midlands Writers’ Guild meeting will be in mid December (details to be announced soon).

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.