• BBC One's political debate programme, Question Time, is being hosted from Lancaster on Thursday, January 31st.

    David Dimbleby chairs the programme from the North West city which sees the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Minister, Baroness Warsi; former Home Secretary for Labour and MP for West Hull and Hessle, Alan Johnson; Comedian Dom Joly; Guardian columnist Zoe Williams, and James Delingpole from The Daily Telegraph, face questions from the audience.

    Please note that this programme will be repeated on Friday 1st February at 1000 on BBC Two.

    To apply for a seat in the audience you can register your question at www.bbc.co.uk/questiontime

    For further information please contact Louise Plank on 020 8995 3936 or lou@plankpr.com

     

  • Channel 4 has commissioned Mentorn Media to make a documentary on the UK's love of fried chicken shops for its flagship documentary strand, Cutting Edge, it has been announced. Commissioned by Channel 4's Emma Cooper, the 1 x 60 is due to transmit in February on Channel 4.

    Exploring the phenomenal rise in public affection for everything fried chicken through a single shop in South London, Cutting Edge: The Fried Chicken Shop (w/t) will offer an intriguing insight into contemporary London life through the window of a busy chicken shop.

    Using a mini-rig of fixed cameras, retrospective interviews with customers and staff and user-generated content, this 60 minute film will be a playful, surprising and celebratory look at the space fried chicken occupies in the cultural and economic urban landscape of modern Britain.

    Alongside the programme, Mentorn Media ran a multi-platform viral campaign with the Channel 4 online team which captured the spirit of popular and funny chicken-related videos like Red Hot's Junior Spesh, Ed Sheeran and Example's Nandos Skank and Chipmunk's Chicken Shop Challenge.

    Emma Cooper, Commissioning Editor at Channel 4 says, 'The Fried Chicken Shop (w/t) will explore the scale of the nation's obsession and increasing love of fried chicken. Filmed in one of the UK's popular fried chicken shops and serving the diverse community of London, it has produced a surprising yet exciting and genuinely illuminating film and tells us the story of Britain today through our voracious appetite for chicken wings.'

    Executive Producer, Hannah Wyatt, said: "We've seen rigs used in large spaces before so it's really exciting to take it to a new, smaller environment."

    Yonni Usiskin is Producer/Director, Max Gogarty is Assistant Producer and the Editor is Jonathan Braman

    For more information please contact:

    Plank PR on 020 8995 3936 or sally@plankpr.com

     

  • In a discussion on tonight's Question Time, Grant Shapps, the Conservative Party Chairman ruled out sending UK troops into Mali.

    Grant Shapps said, "I think the situation is obviously very serious. 210,000 people have already fled; there's a couple of hundred thousand people who are displaced within Mali. We have a very close cooperation with the French and have undertakings to assist and vice versa and so we quickly offered to help with a couple of transport C17s.

    "I think that's the right action. We are not going to be involved on the ground, but I think that providing humanitarian aid and assistance is absolutely right."

    David Dimbleby questioned at this point whether that's how the majority of these interventions start, when he UK Government says we will not get involved on the ground.

    Mr Shapps replied, "It's often how they finish. We only have to look back a year or two to look what happened in Libya where we enforced a no-fly zone and there was a very successful outcome. So, yes it is but clearly the French are taking the lead and we've provided them I think with the practical sensible assistance."

    Tonight's Question Time came from Lincoln (Thursday, 17th January 2013). The panel, chaired by David Dimbleby included: Conservative Party Chairman Grant Shapps MP; Shadow Energy Secretary Caroline Flint MP; UKIP leader Nigel Farage; Chairman of RLM Finsbury and founding Chairman of Business for New Europe, Roland Rudd; and Dr Mary Beard, Professor of Classics at the University of Cambridge.

    Question Time is on BBC One at 10.35pm and available on BBC iPlayer after transmission.

    For further information please call Louise Plank on 07801 321 965 or lou@plankpr.com

  • BBC One's political debate programme, Question Time, is being hosted from Lincoln on Thursday, January 17th.

    David Dimbleby chairs questions posed to the panel which includes: Conservative Party Chairman Grant Shapps MP; Shadow Energy Secretary Caroline Flint MP; UKIP leader Nigel Farage; Chairman of RLM Finsbury and founding Chairman of Business for New Europe, Roland Rudd; and Dr Mary Beard, Professor of Classics at the University of Cambridge.

    To apply for a seat in the audience you can register your question at www.bbc.co.uk/questiontime

    For further information please contact Louise Plank on 020 8995 3936 or lou@plankpr.com

  • Mentorn Media are making an exciting new documentary about the growing trend of young couples who live with their parents or in laws. Many families are getting used to their grown up children living at home for longer - but how do they cope when their offspring's partner moves in too?

    With sky-high house prices and extortionate childcare costs it's a growing trend for multiple generations to live under one roof.  If that sounds familiar then you're not alone - this year the Office for National Statistics said three million 20 - 34 year olds are living with their parents.

    • 1 in 10 people who move back home are part of a young couple
    • 1 in 10 20-somethings are moving back home
    • Three million 20 - 34 year olds currently live back at home
    • Almost two thirds (59%) say that their relationships are harder because of their living

    This TV show is an opportunity for families to tell their stories - do they love living in close quarters or is it a necessary nightmare?

    Parents…

    • Are your children between the age of 16 and 26?
    • Have you welcomed their partner into your home to live under the same roof?
    • Maybe it is a cultural tradition that you're happy to embrace?
    • Or maybe they don't have anywhere else to go?

    Young couples…

    • Are you under 27 and living with your in-laws whilst saving to buy a home?
    • Do live-in grandparents help with sky high childcare costs?
    • Or maybe you just love your mum's cooking too much to leave!?!

    If you're interested in taking part in the programme then please contact: couples@mentorn.tv or 0207 258 6805.

    For press enquiries please contact Plank PR on sally@plankpr.com or 020 8995 3936

  • BBC One's political debate programme, Question Time, is being hosted from London on Thursday, January 10th.

    David Dimbleby chairs the first Question Time of the year from Lewisham in South London which sees Ed Davey, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change; former Deputy Prime Minister, Lord Prescott; Nadine Dorries, MP for Mid Bedfordshire; John Bird, founder of the Big Issue; and Times columnist, Camilla Cavendish, face questions from the audience.

    To apply for a seat in the audience you can register your question at www.bbc.co.uk/questiontime

    For further information please contact Louise Plank on 020 8995 3936 or lou@plankpr.com

  • BBC Three and BBC Learning have commissioned a new series of Free Speech, the monthly live current affairs debate programme, it has been announced.

    Produced by Mentorn Media, the makers of Question Time, the new presenter of Free Speech will be Rick Edwards. He takes over from Jake Humphrey when the next programme is broadcast on February 13, 2013.

    Broadcaster Rick Edwards, who counts presenting the C4 Paralympics coverage and being a columnist for the Observer Magazine amongst his many and varied credits, said: "It's hugely exciting to be joining the Free Speech team - it's clearly a very important show, and unique in the way that it engages with an often under-represented younger audience. I'm looking forward to hearing their take on the issues that matter to them, and occasionally sticking my oar in. As for stepping into Jake's lovely shoes, I'm lucky; we're both a size 11."

    Free Speech launched in March 2012. Commissioned by Executive Producer Fiona Campbell, of BBC Current Affairs, and Head of Commissioning, BBC Learning, Abigail Appleton, it is fully interactive, with viewers on Twitter using the "Power Bar" to show whether they agree or disagree with opinions voiced by the four panellists on each show.

    Subjects covered in the nine programmes aired in 2012 included Immigration, Education, London 2012 and Body Image, as well as exclusive polls by ComRes.

    Panellists so far have included Government ministers, Opposition MPs, BAFTA-winning actor Adam Deacon, comedian Shappi Korshandi and Internet entrepreneur Jamal Edwards. The programme travels the country with locations so far including Edinburgh, Manchester, Newcastle, London and Bristol.

    BBC Three Controller, Zai Bennett, said: "Free Speech challenges and engages the BBC Three audience and gives them a valuable opportunity to have their voice heard. I'm very pleased to be continuing the channel's dedication to bringing current affairs to the attention of young people in the UK. We're really excited to have Rick on board; he's a great presenter and will be an excellent addition to the programme."

    Via a production partnership between Mentorn Media and social TV production company, Telegraph Hill, a new cross-platform strategy including exclusive online video and social media management has been delivered to Free Speech.

    Through the Free Speech website, Facebook page and Twitter feed, viewers can debate the big stories every week day, and tell producers what subjects they want thrashed out on the next TV show: @BBCFreeSpeech, bbc.co.uk/FreeSpeech and facebook.com/BBCFreeSpeech

    Free Speech also offers the audience the chance to make part of the show.  The Lab at BBC Learning works with groups of young people in advance of each programme, giving them the skills to make two films about the issues being debated that month: one for transmission during Free Speech and one for the web.

    Executive Producer for Free Speech, Steve Anderson said: "Free Speech has made an instant connection with BBC Three viewers who clearly enjoy a space where the stories that matter to them get a good airing.

    "Student fees, the shortage of jobs and housing and media portrayal of young people have all got people going in the first episodes. We are delighted to be asked to carry on and are looking forward to working with Rick, who is a great talent."

    Free Speech is a co-commission from BBC Three, BBC Learning and BBC News and Current Affairs.

    The Series Producer is Susan Crook. The Executive Producer is Steve Anderson for Mentorn Media; Andrew Tomlinson for BBC Learning and Fiona Campbell for BBC News and Current Affairs.

    Notes to Editors

    Free Speech first transmitted on BBC Three in March 2012 and was presented by Jake Humphrey, with Social Media Jockeys including Michelle de Swarte, Tinea Taylor, Sam Naz and Tina Daheley.

    Free Speech is the evolved format which was formerly Young Voters' Question Time. Mentorn Media produced Young Voters' Question Time for BBC Three, the Riots edition of which was the channel's highest rating pre-watershed programme ever. Commissioned and transmitted in the space of just three days it was watched by a combined total of 1.7 million viewers.

    Mentorn Media made Dermot Meets... for BBC three which saw Dermot O'Leary take on the party leaders during the 2010 General Election campaign.  They also made two editions of First Time Voters' Question Time, presented by O'Leary. This was succeeded by Young Voters Question Time, hosted by Richard Bacon.

    Mentorn produces Question Time and The Big Question for BBC One as well as having produced the award-winning Tulisa: My Mum and Me and the hard-hitting documentaries Reggie Yates: Teen Gangs, The Batman Shootings and Dying for Clear Skin for BBC Three.

    Mentorn Media can be followed on twitter: @MentornMedia

    For further information please contact Plank PR on 020 8995 3936 or email sally@plankpr.com