5 Minutes with….. The Space Project

1. Can you tell us a bit about The Space Project and what you do?

The Space Project is home to award-winning TV shows such as ‘Cold Feet’, ‘Dragons Den’ and ‘The A Word’. It is Manchester’s purpose built production facility, offering high end content production space for TV, film and advertising. Our client list includes major broadcasters such as BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Sky alongside key agency and production companies.

In addition to our extremely busy current schedule, we’re looking forward to the opening of our 90, 000 sq ft site expansion, including a new 30,000 sq ft stage in the autumn.

Located just five minutes from Manchester city centre, The Space Project currently features five stages totalling 55,000 sq.ft alongside wardrobe, make up, production and workshop space, all designed to provide the very best experience for our clients.
We want to put Manchester and the North West very much at the centre of content production in the UK and by developing the site, expanding our client base and collaborating across the region, we will achieve that ambition.

2. What made you sign up as an exhibitor at Prolific North Live?

With the ongoing expansion of The Space Project we want to meet production teams across TV, film and advertising not just from Manchester but further afield and Prolific North Live gives us a great opportunity to do this.

We will be sharing a stand with our sister site, The Sharp Project, so we have the opportunity to meet a wide range of potential clients as well as catch up with existing ones.

It’s a great opportunity for our team to shout about what makes making television in Manchester such a positive experience, why are clients keep returning.

3. What are you looking forward to bringing to the event?

We are looking forward to showcasing the huge range of facilities we can offer productions on-site – not just stages but unit base parking, office and event space.

It will be a showcase for some of the content produced onsite since the last Prolific North Live.

4. What excites you most about the North’s media and creative sectors?

The North West is now considered a key UK location for TV, film and advertising production.

We are passionate about making the region even more successful and with such a diverse and exciting range of production companies, facilities and talent alongside what we can uniquely offer, we are confident of this ambition being achieved.

5. Why is the North such an exciting place to be right now for creative and digital businesses?

The television and film industry is booming, not just at places like The Space Project and MediaCityUK but right across the region. The more that is made in the North, the more it puts us on the map as a serious player in the sector. The spin-off benefits to a diverse range of creative and digital businesses are immeasurable and the creative and digital economy is growing at a fantastic rate.

6. If The Space Project could have a dinner party with three people, dead or alive, who would they be?

We’d like to think first about where we’d host this dinner and as our SPACE 02 has just being used as a giant green screen for a commercial shoot, we’d set it there. We’d ask our full time tenants to rig and light the set before filming it and sending it round the world.

We’d limit the guestlist to people currently on site so the Cold Feet cast would be invited as they’d no doubt be good company. It wouldn’t harm to get a bit of friendly business advice from a Dragon so we’d probably have Peter Jones at the table and lastly John Logie Baird so we can show him what he started.

We know that’s more than three but we’ve easily got the space…..

markettiers – “Broadcast – Prolific North Live and Rajar results”

One of the absolute fundamentals that came out of the broadcasting session at Prolific North Live last week is that there is still a place for traditional broadcast in the melee of content and knowledge that the future is indeed digital.
Jenny Baxter, the Chief Operating Officer of BBC England expressed that linear TV must not be written off just yet however. What works digitally, is not a million miles away from what works on (traditional) TV. Peter Kay’s ‘Car Share’ premiered on BBC iPlayer before it even touched BBC 1 where it had already racked up 2.8 million views.
I think Jenny summed up the absolute core element of the debate in one quote – “Digital is changing the way we get content but not broadly what we want to consume.”
The absolute principles of solid, engaging, informative and entertaining content apply just as much as they did when terrestrial and analogue was all we had. There is a recognition and a need of course at the BBC particularly that viewers and listeners do want diversity in how and when they consume their content  – if the behaviour of licence fee payers is changing, the BBC appreciates that it needs to adapt to that and enable their audience to find content and use it at their convenience.
In the panel session that followed the presentations there was a lot of conversation around news content specifically. There was a consensus from the panel that for a broadcast brand to maintain and retain its credibility, its news ‘brand’ and positioning is core – whenever and wherever people consume it.
Howard Kosky, CEO of markettiers4dc Group highlighted that our consumption of news is constant throughout the day accessed via radio and social media particularly, but for him, and he was referring to others like him when stating this point, the BBC 10 o’ clock news is still his appointment to view in the evening – to get a solid BBC take on the events of the day. And now that the BBC has committed to an extension of their flagship news programme to a 45minute programme, we can expect to see a greater analysis of the day’s news which will satisfy the 55+ demographic that consume more TV news than any other generation as Lucy West, Head of News for Granada Reports underlined during her presentation.
Regionally speaking, Lucy West also highlighted the need and ability of journalists to stay nimble – to break and cover news via a mobile phone if needed from the field – without having to wait/go back to studio for standard crew and all the resource that goes with it.
What is interesting is that social positioning and the consumption of content online is dictating what the newsroom covers and spends more time on… quirky (cats and dogs) and emotive (Hillsborough) has secured  the hits for ITV socially and therefore plays a part in decision making on what gets covered and loaded on to social channels for future stories. For ITV Granada today, their regional news is 24/7 online and via social channels – with a curated 30 minutes of TV a day at teatime.
Stuart Morgan, Founder of Audio Always, shone a significant light on the power of radio – the most trusted media platform according to Ofcom – and the role it continues to play in the media mix and indeed the role that radio principles play in informing engaging content across platforms – Stuart’s team no longer just produce for the radio set – their content is produced to sit across social and online channels as well, whether in the form of podcasts or shorter segments to complement posts on Twitter.
Radio is still playing a major part in our general media consumption. 48.2 million adults are spending more than 21 hours listening to live radio each week according to the latest Rajar results released yesterday. BBC Radio 6 Music had a particularly good quarter and is now the most listened-to digital-only station in the UK having commanded the highest listening figure for a digital-only station since Rajar began in 1992.
Broadcast reach in the UK is significant and following the session at Prolific North Live, it’s good to know that the people behind the cameras and mics have got our backs when it comes to making sure we can access their content when, where and how we want it.

Seminars and sessions at ProlificNorthLive

If you’ve been keeping an eye on all things #PNLive you’ll have noticed we’ve been announcing our Keynote Theatre speakers over the past two weeks. We have digital and marketing speakers from brands like, Travelex, 02, Microsoft, IceLolly.com, Adobe, Smart Insights, ao.com, Autotrader and Iceland Foods, and we’re yet to go live with the speakers we’ve lined up for our Content and Broadcasting themes. It’s a great line up.

What some of you may not know yet is that as well as our Keynote Theatre seminars ProlificNorthLive also has a number of other rooms hosting sessions and workshops at the expo.

In early December we’ll be announcing details on our Venture Funding sessions and asking interested parties to apply to take part. We’ll also be announcing details on our mobile cinema sessions which currently have companies like Realtime UK, Epiphany, Jaywing, Screen Yorkshire and The Space Project all hosting sessions.

In December we’ll also announce the full speaker line up for our Library Suite Talks. These seminars will focus on current industry trends, best practise, interesting case studies, new tech and will feature some of the North’s best businesses and agencies.

If your company is interested in getting involved in hosting sessions, seminars or workshops at the event and presenting alongside some of the great companies we’ve already got signed up to ProlificNorthLive then contact Exhibition Director, Dunstan Carter at dunstan@prolificnorth.co.uk