ScreenSkills wins government funding for new apprentice programme

Forty apprentices in roles desperately needed by UK’s booming film and television industry are to be recruited by ScreenSkills with major industry partners thanks to Department for Education funding announced today.

ScreenSkills, the skills body for the UK’s screen industries, is among national employers awarded a grant to run a flexi-job apprenticeship project, building on lessons learned from its pioneering apprenticeship pilot still underway with Netflix and WarnerMedia.

Lead partner Prime Video, alongside Banijay UK, Lime Pictures and Sky with APX Content Ventures (a global practice within Publicis Media) are taking part in the new programme which intends to recruit apprentices as production assistants, assistant production accountants, production coordinators and production managers – all skills shortage areas in the current production boom. Prime Video are responsible for funding half the total places.

Recruitment will start this month with the ambition of having the first apprentices in place by May, with a second cohort starting in September. The industry partners are funding additional costs involved in enabling the programme to go ahead.                                                                             

The aim of both the new and existing project is to develop and test an apprenticeship agency model to “unlock” apprenticeships for physical production in film and TV, as traditional apprenticeships do not work for many production roles which are typically freelance and involve shorter contracts. The new pilot will bring in a broader range of partners and enable more apprentices to take part across a wider range of roles.

The apprentices are officially employees of ScreenSkills who will recruit the apprentices, manage their induction and initial training, provide pastoral care and coordinate a series of placements with short further blocks of training through the duration of their apprenticeship schemes. These will last between 13 and 20 months depending on the role.

Announcing the new programme during National Apprenticeship Week, Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi said: “This country has a rich history of being a creative leader on the world stage, exporting talent and high-quality programming across the globe – and it is right that apprentices should lead the charge in delivering the skills needed to support our fantastic film and television industry.

“I am delighted to see the range of roles being made available to apprentices across the country and the new flexible apprenticeship will help sector leaders like ScreenSkills get the skilled workforce they need to continue to deliver excellence onto our screens, while giving learners the chance to work across a range of exciting projects and productions."

Seetha Kumar, CEO ScreenSkills, said: “We are delighted to be working with major industry partners Prime Video, Sky with APX Content Ventures, Banijay UK and Lime Pictures to create opportunities for people who have found it difficult to get into the exciting world of film and television production. Our apprenticeships will address serious skills shortages – benefiting the UK’s booming screen industries while opening up pathways, providing training and support and helping people earn as they learn on high-profile shows,”

ScreenSkills is already conducting an apprenticeship pilot, supported by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) with match funding from partners WarnerMedia and Netflix, which is the model for the new flexi-job apprenticeships announced by the Treasury last year.

Twenty apprentices – 10 broadcast production assistants and a further 10 assistant production accountants - were recruited and have been working since induction last summer.

Other work on apprenticeships includes a new junior animator apprenticeship, coordinated by ScreenSkills with support from the BFI awarding National Lottery funds. The first apprentices are due to start work on it this month.  More than 1,400 people have taken up screen-related apprenticeships in the last year, the highest number of starts in the screen sector since the introduction of the new apprenticeship standards policy in 2014.

For press inquiries, please contact Louise Jury, director of communications and marketing, at ScreenSkills on or 020 7713 9883/07841 496646

Notes to editors:

About flexi-job apprenticeships

A total of 15 organisations were approved by the government today to establish Flexi-Job Apprenticeship Agencies. The agencies will recruit and employ apprentices and place them with host businesses to work on a range of exciting projects, so they gain the skills and experience in previously untapped industries including film and television, healthcare, construction, and engineering. Almost £5 million has been awarded by the government to support employers, including the BBC and the NHS alongside ScreenSkills, to offer the flexi- job apprenticeship scheme and support recruitment of apprentices.

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak said: “Apprenticeships are a cornerstone of our Plan for Jobs, providing people with an excellent route into some of the best careers and contributing to a high-skill, high-productivity economy.

“I'm thrilled to see such exciting new opportunities being created in a wide range of industries thanks to our flexi-job apprenticeships - supporting more people to find the apprenticeship that is right for them.”

About ScreenSkills

ScreenSkills is the industry-led skills body for the screen industries - film, television (including children's, unscripted and high-end), VFX, animation and games.  

We are supporting continued growth and future innovation across the whole of the UK by investing in the skilled and inclusive workforce who are critical to the global success of the screen sector. 

We are supported by industry contributions to our Skills Funds as well as the BFI, awarding National Lottery funds as part of its Future Film Skills strategy, and Arts Council England to help people get into the industry and progress within it. 

About Prime Video

Prime Video offers customers a vast collection of TV shows, movies, sport and more — all available to watch on practically any device:

  • Included with Prime: Watch thousands of popular movies and TV shows, award-winning Amazon Originals and other exclusives, sports, and more. Think UK-produced Amazon Originals such as Good Omens, The Grand Tour and All or Nothing: Tottenham Hotspur, US hits like The Boys, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan; as well as exclusive TV shows like Star Trek: Picard, Nine Perfect Strangers and Little Fires Everywhere; movies like Coming 2 America and the Golden Globe-winning Borat Subsequent Moviefilm; as well as live sport including ATP and WTA Tour and US Open Tennis, the Rugby Union Autumn Nations Cup and Premier League football. All available at no additional cost as part of Prime Video, which is available in more than 240 countries and territories worldwide (offers and titles vary based on location).
  • Watch More with Prime Video Channels: Prime members can add 70+ channels like Discovery, ITV Hub+, Eurosport Player, hayu, STARZPLAY and more — no extra apps to download; no long term contract required. Only pay for the ones you want, and cancel anytime. View the full list of channels available at

  • Rent or Buy: Enjoy new-release movies to rent or buy, entire seasons of current TV shows available to buy, with special deals just for Prime members.

  • Instant Access: Watch at home or on the go with your choice of hundreds of compatible devices. Stream from the web or using the Prime Video app on your smartphone, tablet, set-top box including Sky, Virgin, TalkTalk and BT, game console, or select smart TVs. For a list of all compatible devices,

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Prime Video is just one of many benefits included with a Prime membership, along with unlimited fast free delivery options on millions of items as well as exclusive deals and discounts at, exclusive content with Prime Gaming, access to ad-free music, Kindle ebooks, and unlimited photo storage. To sign-up or start a free trial of Prime visit:

About Sky

Sky is Europe’s leading media and entertainment company and is proud to be part of Comcast Corporation, a global media and technology company that connects people to moments that matter. Across six countries, Sky connects 23 million customers to the best entertainment, sports, news, arts and to our own award-winning original content. 

Following the launch of Sky Glass, we now offer customers our strongest ever line-up of products and services. As well as the new streaming TV with Sky inside and everything integrated, customers can enjoy the award-winning Sky Q with all your favourite channels and apps in one place, and with Sky Go you can now access an even better experience on your devices. Sky TV has new channels, new shows and new deals with Peacock, Paramount+ and more. Sky Mobile was voted Best Pay Monthly and Best Value Pay Monthly network by Uswitch, and with Sky Broadband we’re offering our fastest speeds yet.

Building on the success of Sky Originals like Chernobyl, Gangs of London and Brassic, we are doubling our investment in original content by 2024 through Sky Studios. Our new TV and movie studio, Sky Studios Elstree, is expected to create over 2,000 new jobs and generate an additional £3 billion of production investment in the UK over the first five years alone. Sky News provides impartial and trustworthy journalism for free, Sky Arts is the UK’s only dedicated free-to-air arts channel making the arts accessible for everyone and Sky Sports, our leading sports broadcasting service, brings customers some of the biggest and best global sporting events from the Premier League to Formula 1 and everything in-between. Sky Cinema is the home of Sky Original films with brand new films launching every month alongside an unrivalled range of the latest cinema releases and on demand library.

We believe that we can be a force for good in the communities in which we operate. We’re committed to being Europe’s first net zero carbon entertainment company by 2030 and we’re proud to be a Principal Partner and Media Partner of COP26 – the UN Climate Change Conference. We take pride in our approach to diversity and inclusion: we’ve been recognised by The Times and Stonewall for our commitment to diversity, and we’ve set ambitious 2025 targets to continue to increase diversity and representation.  We’re also committed to investing £30million across our markets over the next three years to improve our approach to diversity and inclusion, and to tackle racial injustice.

About APX Content Ventures

APX Content Ventures is a global unit dedicated to investing in quality, and mission-driven programming. Part of Publicis Media, its purpose is to find, fund and elevate partners and properties that amplify diverse voices, empower women and build community, connection and trust. Live in the UK, US, Germany and Italy, it has generated over 200 hours of content, including 150 episodes in partnership with 40 producers and across 15 networks.

About Banijay UK

Banijay UK is a collective of leading independent producers from around the UK united in an ambition to create incredible television for the UK and beyond.

Banijay UK makes a range of award-winning drama, comedy, entertainment, quiz, documentary, factual entertainment and more. Non scripted shows include Ambulance, Interior Design Masters, Your Home Made Perfect, MasterChef, The Wall, Pointless, Location Location, Location, Would I Lie to You? and The Ranganation, while current scripted hits include Grantchester, The Good Karma Hospital, Peaky Blinders, Hitmen, Code 404 and Man Like Mobeen.

Banijay UK is part of the Banijay Group.  The world’s largest independent producer spanning 22 territories and 120 companies and a multi-genre catalogue boasting over 88,000 hours of original standout programming. Banijay Group acquired Endemol Shine in July 2020

About Lime Pictures

Lime Pictures, with bases in Liverpool, London and Los Angeles, produces world-class, cutting-edge programming, covering a wide range of genres from reality drama, through to children’s scripted to Channel 4’s multi-award-winning daily soap, Hollyoaks.  With more than 30 years’ experience in producing content for global audiences, it produces for all platforms, both linear and VOD, and has played a pioneering role in the launch of new formats as well as in using television as a way of on-screen storytelling, and as an off-screen platform, to communicate with a younger audience.  

Lime Pictures’ extensive catalogue of programming includes the worldwide Netflix hits Zero Chill and double Emmy award-winning Free Rein, MTV’s highest rated series outside of North America Geordie ShoreGeordie OGs, the multi award-winning Hollyoaks for Channel 4 and the BAFTA award-winning reality series The Only Way Is Essex for ITV.  It also produces E4’s highly successful Celebs Go Dating and Celebs Go Dating: The Mansion as well as ITV’s Gemma Collins: Diva Forever

Previous credits include Stand Up and Deliver for Channel 4, and Educating Joey Essex for ITV, the Emmy award-winning Singles Project and Relative Success with Tabatha Coffey for Bravo, Disney’s Evermoor and Nickelodeon’s House of Anubis.

Lime Pictures is an All3Media company.


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