Fast Train makes tracks to MediaCityUK

Thursday 11 October 2012
MediaCityUK’s biggest players, including the University of Salford, are pulling together for Fast Train North, a free training day for media freelancers on Tuesday 20 November.

It’s the first time the BBC Academy and licensed sector skills council Creative Skillset’s training-taster and skills development day will be staged in the north of England and that the event will be multimedia-oriented.

ITV is also taking part for the first time, just as the first wave of ITV staff arrives at MediaCityUK this month. The broadcaster is underpinning its commitment to supporting skills development in the North by sharing its expertise through masterclasses and training sessions.

One plan is to run a continuing drama masterclass – unpicking live anniversary episodes of Emmerdale and Coronation Street with a panel featuring Tony Prescott, who directed live episodes of both soaps. Plus there’s a special how-to workshop, led by Coronation Street’s Kate Oates, on storylining and creating new characters.

The University Of Salford is opening its doors to delegates with sessions in its state-of-the-art facilities at MediaCityUK, supporting connected platforms skills development for broadcast and digital freelancers.

New rounds of craft and technical funding will open to coincide with the event and the Creative Skillset team will be on hand during the day to offer advice on all available funding for training in TV, radio and film.

Said Executive Producer Louise Blythe, from the BBC Academy: “Fast Train North is about organisations pulling together to support freelancers and really invest in talent across the North. We’ll be looking to cover some key skills gaps, specifically those impacting in this region, with a focus on craft skills, live studio skills, radio, sport, gaming development and, of course, connected platforms. There are some brilliant sessions and speakers – it’s going to be a real treat.”

Further details will be on the BBC Academy website –

Fast Train North is produced by the BBC Academy and Creative Skillset, and industry partners also include the University of Salford, ITV, The Farm, Dock10, The Indie Club, Indie Training Fund, The Radio Independents Group, University of York, ScreenHouse, BECTU, IABM, Puma Events and Training, and Sound Women.

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