I should read press releases properly before I add them to my links. In the ‘Beyond the M25’ BBC announcement there was in fact some half-decent news for Birmingham. It had been rumoured around these parts for a while that Selly Oak produced daytime drama Doctors was either for the chop or would go to Manchester.
Why do I care about this? Well there’s the general prinicple of Birmingham having a bouyant BBC outpost with plenty of work to be getting on with and therefore jobs for local creatives. Indeed there are many former students from my time as a lecturer that still work on Doctors. Also, local film director type Justin Edgar has worked on it, as has BAFTA winner Natasha Carlish. It’s good bread and butter work that can persuade talented people to stay put in Brum.
But the real reason is that Doctors never strays more than a couple of miles from its base in the grounds of Birmingham University for its location filming. After a leaflet came through our front door 18 months ago looking to use homes to film in, we leapt at the chance. They filmed twice and almost came a third time with a storyline line involving a local lothario with a mistress stashed away in the houses on either side. I think the neighbours said no to that one. Of course they do pay a modest fee, which is what I’m getting at. They’re bound to come back again – another three years of Doctors in Brum will do me nicely.
The other news for BBC Birmingham is linked to my other interest, gardening:
“Birmingham will now take on production of the Chelsea and Hampton Court Flower Shows, thus becoming the centre for horticulture programming, as well as Factual and Drama – recent titles include Coast and Trawler Men, as well as the long-running daytime drama Doctors, which has been re-commissioned for a further three years.”