Steven Knight's This Town celebrates the midlands music scene

The new BBC One drama This Town opens with the streets of Birmingham ablaze with violence during the Handsworth riots of 1981, before the action moves to council estates.

But its creator, Steven Knight, wants to make it clear that his working-class tale is not bleak or tragic, but set in a vibrant world full of energy and promise. He even manages to make tower blocks and Spaghetti Junction look beautiful.

Our Friend in the Midlands: Kully Khaila on the cancellation of Doctors

Kully Khaila poses in a selfie

Like a patient receiving life-changing news when they only went in for a routine check-up, last ­October’s BBC announcement that the long-running daytime drama Doctors was to be axed was a shock. 

For more than two decades, Doctors has been part of the TV audience’s daytime routine across the nation. The final episode will be shown in December 2024, when the surgery closes its doors for ever. It promises to go out with a bang. 

RTS Midlands Student Awards celebrate new talent

students stand with awards in front of banner

The Nottingham Trent University student’s film, Orange Striped Socks, which also won in the Animation category, was chosen by the Dudley-born comic and actor, who praised its “extraordinary craftsmanship”, calling it “very moving and beautifully well done”.

The night’s other principal awards were shared around the region’s universities.

Our Friend in the Midlands: Kully Khaila

The year 1983 was a year rich in history for British television. It was the year Blackadder, Blockbusters and The Bill began… and there were many shows not beginning with B, too. One television start-up that became a stalwart that year was The Television Workshop, an institution from the Midlands that has been responsible for shaping the careers of so many talents on screen today.

Emerging out of Lockdown and Beyond

Three industry professionals from Factual TV discuss their experiences of TV production during  lockdown and explore how the pandemic may shape the TV landscape in the immediate future and beyond. 

Lindsay Bradbury, Commissioning Editor, BBC Daytime and Early Peak, Sarah Eglin, Executive Producer at Optomen TV and Sabrina Ferro, Production Executive, will be chatting with Perjeet Aujla, Series Producer about some of the practical aspects of production in lock down, including safety, budgets and home working. 

Our Friend in the Midlands: Guz Khan on regional representation

Guz Khan

The West Midlands is my home and I bloody love it. So why do I barely see it on the big old telly? Don’t get me wrong, I know everyone from the Spaghetti Junction to Bolivia loves Peaky Blinders – it’s a great show – but it hardly feels like it’s created here.

I enjoy some gangster shizz set in my neck of the woods as much as the next former criminal but, as soon as some of the characters open their mouths, I’m hearing accents that sound like a Welsh guy who has spent considerable time in Berlin, not Small Heath.

Lights, camera, action - the big names in broadcasting head to the Midlands for RTS Careers Fair

(Credit: Pixabay)

Aimed at 16-24 year olds who are interested in working in the broadcasting industry, at places like the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Sky, the fair will feature people who have experience working on some of the country’s biggest shows including Britain’s Got Talent, The X Factor and The Great British Bake Off.  Massive youth brands such as Radio 1 and BBC Three will be in attendance; plus the BBC’s training arm - the Academy and locally made BBC One daytime drama Doctors and BBC WM. More names are being added to the line up every day. 

BBC Television is 80 years young, says Norman Green

Green, the first head of technology at ITV Network and the founder of the RTS London Centre, came armed with a series of fascinating test transmissions and films from the 1930s.

The BBC officially launched its TV service from Alexandra Palace London on 2 November 1936. Its first major outside broadcast was the coronation of George VI in May 1937. This technological breakthrough was captured in a BBC film, Televising the Coronation Procession, which Green showed at the event.