National Film & Television School hub for Leeds

National Film & Television School hub for Leeds
Credit: shutterstock.com/ Avigator Thailand

The National Film and Television School (NFTS) is opening a new hub in Leeds in a move supported by Channel 4, ITV, the BFI, Screen Yorkshire and ScreenSkills.

It follows the successful opening of NFTS Scotland and is part of the NFTS’ ongoing mission to support the growth of film and TV production outside London.

NFTS Leeds, which will operate from several spaces across the city including dedicated space at ITV, will provide specialist training to meet the growing needs of film and TV production in the area.

It is expected to open in January 2020 with 150 students expected to enrol within the first year.

Courses will mirror those offered by NFTS Scotland and will include three-month certificate courses; twelve month full-time and part-time diploma courses; and short courses to provide ‘Continuing Professional Development’ (CPD) in key film, television and games craft disciplines.

Yorkshire-based screen industries are growing faster than anywhere else in the UK according to data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS).

The study revealed that between 2009-2015, employment across the film and TV industries in the region grew 88% against a UK average of 32%.

This trend has continued with regular TV productions such as Emmerdale based in the area as well as TV series including Ackley Bridge (Channel 4), Gentleman Jack (BBC), The Innocents (Netflix), Victoria (ITV) and feature films, Phantom Thread and Darkest Hour.

“It’s fantastic that NFTS is opening a hub in Leeds, the new home of Channel 4’s National HQ,” said Alex Mahon, CEO of Channel 4.

“We’ve seen a significant influx of creative organisations committing to Leeds since we made our announcement and the addition of NFTS will undoubtedly create more opportunities and attract further investment.

“By working closely with the NFTS and other partners such as Leeds City Region, Screen Yorkshire and regional production companies, we can nurture local talent to meet the demands of Leeds as a creative powerhouse.”

Amanda Nevill, CEO of the BFI, said: “Production is booming all over the UK and Yorkshire is a shining example of a region has really capitalised on this, but we still need thousands more skilled people to join the workforce.

“The new NFTS hub is not only great news for Yorkshire, but great news for the creative industries and the wider economy.”