National Film and Television School Leeds hub - all you need to know

The National Film and Television School (NFTS) announced earlier this month that it would open a Leeds hub to complement the growth in screen industries across the region.

NFTS students on set. Credit: NFTS

What is it?

It is an industry-leading organisation and the new hub, NFTS Leeds, will specifically work to address gaps in film and television production in the area by delivering courses other providers are not currently offering such as production accounting, script editing, craft skills, location management and factual development.

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NFTS students on set. Credit: NFTS

What courses will it offer?

Courses will mirror those offered by NFTS Scotland and will include three-month certificate courses, 12 month full-time and part-time diploma courses, and short courses toprovide ‘Continuing Professional Development’ (CPD) in key film, television and games craft disciplines.

Where will it be based?

It will operate from a number of spaces across the city including a dedicated spot at ITV in Kirkstall Road.

When is it happening?

The hub is expected to open in January 2020, with 150 students anticipated to sign up within the first year.

Who are its most famous alumni?

Graduates from the school's original sites include Oscar-winning cinematographer Roger Deakins, Oscar-winning animator Nick Park (the creator of Wallace & Gromit), acclaimed directors Lynne Ramsay (You Were Never Really Here, We Need to Talk About Kevin) and David Yates (the Harry Potter series, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them) and renowned documentary makers Kim Longinotto (Pink Saris, Gaea Girls) and Nick Broomfield (Whitney: Can I Be Me, Kurt and Courtney).

Why now?

Yorkshire-based screen industries are growing faster than anywhere else in the UK according to data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS), with a study revealing that between 2009 and 2015, employment across the film and TV industries in the region grew 88 per cent against a UK average of 32 per cent.

Experts have spoken about how the county's diverse landscapes, ease-of-access and "no nonsense" approach have impressed producers from around the world.

What else do experts say?

Managing director of ITV Studios, Julian Bellamy said: "Whilst increasing its global presence, ITV Studios is proud of its UK heritage and have long held a production base in Leeds.

"We look forward to continuing our work with the NFTS and other partners to support the growth of talent and meet the increasing demand for a broad range of behind-the-camera skills."

Patrick McKenna, NFTS chairman, said: “The school plans to make its courses increasingly accessible to students throughout the nations and regions of the UK. This exciting new initiative in Leeds marks the second phase of an ambitious programme of development following the successful opening of NFTS Scotland.”

Gareth Ellis-Unwin, head of film and animation at ScreenSkills, added: “The NFTS is an important partner for us across the UK and specifically in the delivery of our own plans in Yorkshire.

"It is fantastic to see the collaboration between all partners on the ground to develop skills and talent in this way.”

Jon Wardle, NFTS director, said: “Since inception, the NFTS has had a remit as the UK’s National Film and Television School to serve the whole of the UK and we have shown with the successful opening of our hub in Glasgow, that there is the demand for opening hubs outside of our main base in Beaconsfield and that graduates go on to achieve great things in the local area.

"We look forward to working with our partners locally in Leeds and the surrounding area to make an even greater contribution to the local economy through our unparalleled reputation for delivering high-calibre, job ready graduates.”

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

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