• Mentorn Media has appointed the multi-award winning film-maker Iain Scollay as Creative Executive.

    Scollay joins Mentorn from the BBC and takes on the brand new role of Creative Executive which will involve him developing new ideas as well as utilising his award-winning expertise to executive produce and make programmes and series, based in Mentorn Scotland’s Glasgow office. 

    Beginning his career at London Weekend Television, he produced ITV's weekly political talk show with Jonathan Dimbleby, Iain subsequently joined RDF where he won BAFTA, RTS and Broadcast awards for Faking It.  Moving back to Glasgow Iain co-founded production company Matchlight. 

    He directed documentaries for strands such as Cutting Edge, One Life and BodyShock.  In addition he won Scottish BAFTAs for Best Factual Series for Mountain With Griff Rhys Jones (BBC1) and Afghanistan: The Great Game with Rory Stewart MP and Best Documentary for Blackwatch: A Soldier's Story (BBC2 Scotland and BBC4).

    Chief Executive of Mentorn Media, John Willis “We are delighted to welcome Iain to Mentorn where his versatility and experience will be a real asset for the team.”

    Creative Director of Mentorn Media Mark Roberts said: “This is a very exciting time for Mentorn and Mentorn Scotland and we are thrilled that Iain has chosen to join us.”

    Iain said: “I’m delighted to be joining the creative team at Mentorn, and look forward to helping them grow production from their office in Scotland.”

    Based in Glasgow, Scollay joins Hayley Valentine the recently announced Director of Current Affairs in the Mentorn Scotland office.

    For further information, pictures or interview request please contact Louise Plank on behalf of Mentorn Scotland on 07801 321 965 or lou@plankpr.com

  • BBC Two has commissioned Mentorn Media to make a prime time observational documentary series following one of the largest water companies in Britain, it has been announced.

    Mentorn has gained unique access to United Utilities, the UK company who supply water to more than seven million people in North West England. The scale of their operation is enormous; the biggest water firm on the FTSE 100, they manage 42,000 kilometres of water pipes and 72,000 kilometres of sewage networks across a vast and varied region with differing environments posing a new set of challenges.

    Everything they do is about keeping the water supply flowing to the public and if there are any problems, the customers are the first to let them know. From sewer men to call centre staff, the series will shine a light on just what it takes to keep water flowing and what happens each time we flush the loo, wash our face or have a drink from the tap.

    Commissioned by Maxine Watson, the 6x60 series Watermen (working title) will follow the 9,000-strong workforce as they ensure that safe, clean water runs to our homes 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

    Commissioning Editor, Documentaries for BBC One and Two, Maxine Watson said, “We rarely think about what it takes to bring clean water to every household in the country. This series will hopefully change that as we follow the dedicated cast of characters who take pride in doing the sometimes dirty and filthy jobs essential to bringing us clean and safe water.”

    Executive producer for Mentorn Media, Hannah Wyatt, added, “Without clean water we couldn’t survive. It’s easy to think it just falls from the sky and someone collects it but in fact it’s a huge and complex operation from customer services to ground breaking engineering projects. The series will go behind-the-scenes of this process and meet the unsung heroes who keep our taps flowing.”

    The programme will be pre-sold by Passion Distribution.

    For more information please contact Sally Kent at Plank PR on 020 8995 3945 or sally@plankpr.com

     

  • Channel 4 Head of Factual Ralph Lee has commissioned Mentorn Media to produce a 1 x 60 live debate around the issues brought to the fore by the observational documentary series Benefits Street. This series, filmed over the course of 12 months, documents the reality of life on a street in Birmingham where the majority of households are dependent on benefits and in an area of Birmingham that has had the highest rate of unemployment in the country for the last eight years. It has attracted a great deal of attention - generating tens of thousands of responses on Twitter, press headlines and questions raised in parliament.

    Lee says: “This is a series which reflects the reality of day-to-day life of some the residents of a single street who, for the most part, rely on benefits to survive. It does not, and never has set out to reflect the experiences  of every person who receives benefits  yet it has triggered a national debate about state welfare at a time in which further welfare reforms are being proposed. We feel it is timely to provide a forum in which these issues can be raised and discussed.”

    The programme will be live and interactive allowing viewers to submit questions; it will be chaired by broadcaster Richard Bacon. The panellists will be confirmed closer to transmission but will represent the views across the political spectrum – and crucially those who claim benefits.

    Mentorn Media's Director of Current Affairs, Hayley Valentine, said: "It is vital that voices on all sides are heard, and we are pleased to be providing a forum for both public figures and viewers to debate the series that has brought a pertinent political issue to life so vividly."

    It will be broadcast at 10pm on Monday 10th February, directly after the final episode of the five-part documentary series airs. The Executive Producer is Hayley Valentine.

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

  • BBC One’s political debate programme, Question Time, is being hosted from Durham on Thursday, January 16th.

    David Dimbleby chairs the programme from North Eastern city which Grant Shapps MP, Conservative Party Chairman; Mary Creagh MP, Shadow Transport Secretary; Tim Farron MP, President of the Liberal Democrats; Archbishop of York John Sentamu; and broadcaster Julia Hartley-Brewer, 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

  • On Sunday 12th January Nicky Campbell presents a special edition of The Big Questions asking just one Big Question: “Should human rights always outweigh religious rights?”

    Recorded at Queen Mary University of London, amongst those taking part are: David Lammy MP; Maajid Nawaz from The Quilliam Foundation; Rev Lynda Rose from Voice for Justice;  the philosopher Dr Stephen Law; Prof Tina Beattie from Roehampton University; Davis Mac-Iyalla from LGBT Christians in Exile; Rev Betty King; Charlie Klendjian from the Lawyers’ Secular Society; Sahar Al-Faifi, a Muslim community organiser; Rev Sharon Ferguson from the Lesbian & Gay Christian Movement; Harmander Singh from Sikhs in England; and Rabbi Neil Janes from the Liberal Jewish Synagogue.

    You too can take part in the debates:

    via Twitter @bbcbigquestions, please use the hashtag #bbctbq and via FaceBook http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Big-Questions/351996461495563

    And there's more about the series on www.bbc.co.uk/religion

    You can apply to be in our audience at future shows by emailing audiencetbq@mentorn.tv

    January 19th    Salford  - for the live show in the morning or the pre-recorded special in the afternoon

    February 2nd   Bishop's Stortford

    February 9th    Leicester

    February 16th  Edinburgh

  • BBC One’s political debate programme, Question Time, is being hosted from London on Thursday, January 9th.

    David Dimbleby chairs the first Question Time of the year from Lewisham in South London which sees Norman Baker, Liberal Democrat MP for Lewes in East Sussex and Minister of State for Crime Prevention; Labour MP for Streatham and Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, Chuka Umunna; Nadine Dorries, Conservative MP for Mid Bedfordshire; MEP and Deputy Leader of UKIP, Paul Nuttall; and Susie Boniface, Mirror columnist and author of the Fleet Street Fox blog, 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