High-end TV programmes for crew and talent

The High-end TV Skills Fund supports a range of programmes addressing areas of skills shortages in the UK high-end TV industry. You can download a full PDF booklet of current schemes by clicking here

Skills training and support are delivered by ScreenSkills and third parties, providing training and investment needed to progress the careers of crew and talent already working in the sector. The fund is investing in skills that have been identified as a priority by the high-end TV industry through our research and by senior employers on the High-end TV Skills Council.

Informer © Neal Street Productions / BBC

ScreenSkills schemes for High-end TV crew and talent:

Skills Passport

An online resource for production freelancers that identifies short courses and shows how they can benefit career development. To find out more and browse courses visit the Skills Passport directory.

Make a Move

Funding for on-the-job training for individuals identified by productions as ready to move into a more senior role with a little support. For more information or to apply to the scheme please click here.

Schemes currently supported by the ScreenSkills High-end TV Skills Fund:

Return to work in post & VFX

A return to work scheme from Film London for parents and carers in the post and VFX sector in high-end TV. This scheme is part of the Equal Access Network, which was established to help new entrants, mid-level professionals and returners enter, stay in and return to the film and TV industries. Application closed.

Producer Development Programme

Applications closed. A new initiative, delivered by BECTU Vision, designed to support the development of the future producers of television drama in Scotland. For more information click here

High-end TV Link

This brand-new programme, delivered by www.thecallsheet.co.uk is aimed at heads of department and experienced mid-level crew working in TV production in the English regions to help boost the pool of talent who can work on high-end productions shooting in the regions. Applications are currently closed.

Leadership and management training for HoDs

This is a free leadership and management course for heads of department on productions that pay into the High-end TV Skills Fund.  The  programme was developed by Addie Orfila Training and is administered by DV Talent. To learn more or book a session please click here.

There is a special one-off workshop on 11 January for freelancers in high-end TV drama. Follow the link above to book.

Post-production courses, from Image Eyes

Two courses delivered by Image Eyes covering post-production processes in high-end TV. For upcoming dates and locations of these courses please click here.

High-end Drama Directors Development Programme

A returning programme delivered by Directors UK to raise standards among up-and-coming directors and to develop and diversify the directing talent in high-end TV drama. Five directors are embedded on high-end TV drama productions for up to 12 weeks, with the opportunity to direct second unit. Following a successful 2016/17 programme, where directors were placed on some of the UK’s most popular high-quality drama productions such as JamestownSilent WitnessPressThe Tunnel: Vengeance and Call The Midwife, the programme was re-commissioned for 2018/19 with five directors now embedded on productions. Applications are currently closed.

New writers mentoring, from Dancing Ledge

Commissioned by the High-end TV drama writers working group, this programme provides bursaries and introductions to help eight up-and-coming writers further their careers in high-end TV drama. Dancing Ledge Productions will work side by side with established writers, such as Jimmy McGovern, Paul Abbott, Kay Mellor, Jed Mercurio and Sally Wainwright, as they support the bursary winners to take writing projects from idea and concept through to delivering second draft scripts. 

Stepping-up with Northern Ireland Screen

This programme from Northern Ireland Screen is aimed at crew with at least two years experience in their current role who have been identified as ready to move up to the next grade on productions. Trainee's on ITV Encore's drama The Frankenstein Chronicles were among the first to benefit from the programme.

Director stepping-up for TV drama, with NFTS

This is a free-to-join programme from the National Film and Television School (NFTS) which has been designed to develop the next generation of directing talent for high-end TV drama. Successful applicants chosen in the first half of 2018 are undergoing an intense 10-month programme of individual training, coaching and mentoring, nurturing their potential and building their directing skills. 

Hartswood West Writer's Award

Hartswood West (Hartswood Film's creative base in Wales) joined forces with BBC Writersroom Wales and ScreenSkills to find, develop and financially support two exciting, up-and-coming TV writers with a strong connection to Wales. Welsh writers Russell T. Davies and Cath Tregenna are backing the initiative. The award opened to Welsh writers, those living and working in Wales and those who can authentically depict Welsh stories and Welsh characters and reflect the culture of Wales in their writing.

High-end TV Drama New Producer Programme

Support for senior heads of department grades to help them step up into the role of TV drama producer. 

Past schemes supported by the ScreenSkills High-end TV Skills Fund:

Client relationship and negotiating skills for post/VFX

A one-day course for junior and line producers working in VFX and facilities companies that service high-end TV. Delivered by EverySense in London, Bristol, Manchester and Glasgow.

Return to Work for TV Freelancers with Media Parents

Media Parents, who champion flexible working, are providing free return-to-work training for production freelancers in high-end TV drama and children’s TV. Two cohorts from around the regions, including Wales, Bristol and the South-west have already passed through the scheme. The final cohort were recruited from the North West, read about their progress by visiting the Media Parents blog here.

HETV Connect, with thecallsheet.co.uk

In this programme from thecallsheet.co.uk, up to 50 up-and-coming TV production professionals selected from around the UK were chosen to meet and network regularly with the UK's leading TV drama production companies to develop new business relationships and opportunities. The ambition is to tackle the barriers created by producers and directors working only with the crew and talent they already know.

Line producer training, from Indie Training Fund

This programme from Indie Training Fund was for aspiring line producers (eg first assistant directors, production managers, production co-ordinators) and working line producers in high-end TV or children's TV drama. The free skills-based five-day programme included workshops, masterclasses, networking opportunities and mentoring sessions. It was delivered in London and Manchester in June 2018.

Support for social enterprise organisations

Five social enterprise organisations were selected to receive specific project funding to support and inspire young people in filmmaking and production skills. 

Mastering for broadcast and online, from the Digital Production Partnership

This sold-out one-day training and awareness day delivered by DPP in March 2018 helped heads of production and post-production professionals understand the impact of broadcasters' requirements for commissioning and programme deliverables. The day included live demonstrations of mastering tools and the opportunity to meet some of the companies developing them. 

RED camera workshops, from the Guild of British Camera Technicians

This one-day course from the Guild of British Camera Technicians introduced participants to the RED WEAPON 8K S35 (which has the new HELIUM sensor). It offered a series of demonstrations, discussions and practical shooting exercises.

Production accounting training, from the Production Guild

The Production Guild ran an intensive five-day course in Salford and at Pinewood Studios to help those working as assistant production accountants move up to the position of production accountant.

Line producer training, with TRC Media

TRC Media delivered this course for production managers, first assistant directors and production accountants with a minimum of three years’ experience in drama or feature film production and based in the nations and regions of the UK. It offered the essential training required to become a line producer as well as the opportunity to experience the role first-hand on a drama production.

Advanced writing for TV drama, with MediaXchange

Designed to build the professional writing skills and collaborative principles necessary for writers to succeed at the highest level in the competitive genre of primetime TV  drama.

The TCN Incubator, with Triforce Creative Network

Over 12 months, participants in the Triforce Creative Network Writers Incubator engaged in a hands-on writer’s initiative to hone their talents and develop their professional practice. It aimed to change the usual routes of access and mitigate industry's perceptions of the risk attached to using new talent. 

Shadow Writers Scheme, with Big Light Productions

This programme from Big Light Productions enabled intermediate TV writers to gain more experience in writing for long-running TV series and to develop the art of collaborating with other writers. 

Coming soon:

ScreenSkills has several programmes for crew and talent that are still in development and will be coming later this year. These include:

  • Bursaries to support writing single episodes of a returning series
  • Production accountants training
  • Introduction to location and unit management
  • Grips training for diverse candidates
  • Script supervisor shadow placements
  • Stepping up Wales
  • Stepping up Scotland

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