True North

Our Friend in Leeds: Andrew Sheldon on the rise of TV production in the North

When George Osborne first uttered the phrase “Northern Powerhouse” back in 2014, it’s fair to say that the TV industry wasn’t at the front of his mind. But, six years on, is it time to start thinking of it as such?

Back then, the mood in the TV industry across the North of England was very different. Both Leeds and Manchester were still struggling with the impact of ITV’s retrenchment to London, while the BBC’s project as the anchor tenant of MediaCity UK was barely into its stride.

True North's Jess Fowle's TV Diary

An auspicious start to the week. The news breaks that Sky has taken a majority stake in True North. Our baby, born 16 years ago, is all grown-up. What started with three people, one desk and one computer regularly employs more than 150 talented programme-makers across bases in Leeds and Manchester and has 11 series in production.

The deal with Sky has been a long time in the making and it’s both exciting and a relief to finally tell our team. We’re all fiercely proud of our independent Northern roots and massively invigorated by what the future holds.