- Does award winning director David Caffrey think Hastings would be a good base for Channel 4? Here’s his short answer…
BAFTA winner and Hastings resident, director David Caffrey is championing a proposal for his home town to become a creative hub for Channel 4.
The national broadcaster is moving most of its operations out of London and has invited towns and cities across the UK to explain why they deserve to be one of the channel’s three new bases.
David who directed the most recent series of the hit series Peaky Blinders as well as directing Line of Duty reckons Hastings deserves to be one of those winning towns and is putting his weight the Hastings bid which has been put together by Hastings Borough Council and Locate East Sussex.
The town will know by May 30 if it has made the shortlist and if it will be included in the second round of the selection process.
Speaking earlier today at the launch of the bid in Jerwood Gallery David said: “I love the lifestyle here in Hastings. A Channel 4 Hub would help immensely with the local economy and development of film projects in the south and I’m so happy to support the proposal that I hope will bring television to the town I’m proud to call home.”
The bid is called ‘Bringing Television Home’ to highlight Hastings’ status as the birthplace of TV broadcasting: John Logie Baird built what would become the world’s first working television in his workshop at Queen’s Arcade shortly after moving to Hastings in 1923.
One of the bid’s most compelling arguments for Channel 4 to set up in Hastings are the low operating and living costs. Despite inward investment over the last 20 years the town is still one of the most economically deprived in the south east and property prices are 40 per cent lower than in the London. This makes Hastings affordable and the bid showcases the ‘unbeatable lifestyle’ offered by the town to those who want a healthy work-life balance, without compromising culture and connectivity with the rest of the world.
The proposal describes Hastings as a ‘creative hotspot’, strategically located at the epi-centre of the south coast’s cultural stretch between Brighton and Margate. The town is home to many industries and individuals in TV, media and production and attractions such as the Jerwood Gallery are helping to boost arts and culture.
The Jerwood’s director, Liz Gilmore, said: “Hastings is an astonishing and vibrant cultural hub, home to so many talented artists and creative practitioners including Jake and Dinos Chapman and our patron Sir Quentin Blake. Jerwood Gallery has flourished in and been fed by this creative environment.”
Another potential lure for Channel 4, which describes itself as a ‘talent-driven organisation,’ is Hastings’ wealth of young, talented people. The proposal explains that as well as students from Sussex Coast College and University Centre Hastings, University of Brighton and University of Sussex there is an opportunity to discover home-grown talent hidden in the seaside town’s predominantly working-class population, a demographic that is currently under-represented in the media.
Sussex Coast College and University Centre Hastings, University of Brighton and University of Sussex are all fully supporting the proposal.
Peter Chowney, Leader of Hastings Borough Council, said: “Channel 4 establishing a cultural hub here would provide an incredible boost to the local community, creating opportunities, jobs and making a real difference to the town. Hastings may well be the underdog in the selection process, but we have a great track record for welcoming new business and would relish the chance to show what we can do for Channel 4.”
The basic criteria for becoming a creative hub in the brief provided by Channel 4 include:
- Working population of more than 75,000
- Travel time to London of up to four hours
- Proximity to a well-developed independent TV/Digital production community
While this stage of the selection process focuses on the town, Hastings’ bid offers Channel 4 the opportunity to move immediately into a state-of-the-art media centre in the heart of Hastings. The University of Brighton building on Havelock Road is equipped with cutting edge media and broadcast facilities including a TV studio, editing suite, video and photography studio and digital post production facilities.
Hastings has formally submitted its bid to Channel 4 and will be informed by May 30 if it has made the second round of the selection process.
Watch the full video interview here…