The Writer’s Friend: A Roscoe Lecture ‘In Conversation’ with Nicola Shindler

Nicola Shindler - Roscoe Lecture Review

Manchester-born Nicola Shindler, an award-winning British television producer and executive, delivered an insightful and inspiring Roscoe Lecture ‘In Conversation’ event at St George’s Hall.

Now one of the most powerful women in TV production, Nicola began her career working for ITV Studios predecessor Granada Television in the 1990s. This was where she produced and script-edited acclaimed dramas such as the BBC’s Our Friends in the North and ITV’s one-off Hillsborough, which Jimmy McGovern wrote about the Sheffield Wednesday stadium disaster of 1989.

Often described as ‘the writer’s friend’, Nicola talked about her career, from the early days at Granada and what she learned from writers like Jimmy McGovern, through to setting up on her own, with the Red Production Company.

She explained why she puts the writer at the centre of everything, telling the audience how there are actually very few stories to tell, and that’s why it’s about the voice, attitude and point of view developed by the writer.

Through her experience, Nicola was also able to offer a comprehensive view on the industry, including the lack of working class writers, actors and producers and how TV drama is missing out because of this.  She emphasised a need for investment in training and a multi-regional presence. But she was also keen to state how ‘money doesn’t make a good story.’

Good Citizenship Award Winner

Group shot

Group photo: Television producer Nicola Shindler and Good Citizenship Award Winner Ben Hodge with Professor Nigel Weatherill, Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive and Sir Jon Murphy, Chair of Roscoe Lectures.

Ben Hodge, a former student of Rainhill High School received the Good Citizenship Award Winner at the event.  Ben has been nominated for the award by his former Head Teacher, John Pout.  As Head Boy at Rainhill High, impact of Ben’s passionate, principled politics has enthused, mobilised and educated a generation of students. He has raised awareness and expectations beyond the school, into the town, regionally and internationally.  Ben’s work has had a permanent impact at the school.


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