Day One – Scripted

9:35am | In conversation with Piers Wenger

At the end of his first year in post, BBC’s Controller of Drama Piers Wenger, shares his vision across the corporation’s channels and reveals his impressions of the challenges and opportunities. How will he reinvent drama on BBC2, and how can BBC1 respond to the challenge of the emerging digital platforms and spiralling budgets?

Piers Wenger
Controller, Drama


Jane Tranter
Bad Wolf

10:30am | Short and sweet

Short form is emerging as a place for genuine innovation by the major broadcasters. What are Sky, Channel 4 and the BBC seeking in the scripted space, and how should projects be honed to perfectly fi t the medium?

Morwenna Gordon
Commissioning editor, comedy

Nasfim Haque
Short-form commissioner

Rachel Springett
Commissioning editor, comedy
Channel 4

11:30am | What’s in the script for Channel 4

Channel 4 Head of Drama Beth Willis and Head of Comedy Fiona McDermott share the stage to discuss how they intend to fulfil the channel’s remit to innovate and take risks. Hear about plans for scripted projects across the channels and platforms, including highly authored and thrilling drama and a push for talent-led series and comedy from a wider range of social demographics.

Beth Willis
Head of drama
Channel 4

Fiona McDermott
Head of comedy
Channel 4


Boyd Hilton
Entertainment Director
Heat Magazine

12:25pm | How I got my show commissioned – Porters

From development through to pitch and greenlight, how did Porters make make it onto Dave?

Laurence Bowen
Dancing Ledge Productions

Pete Thornton
Senior Commissioning Editor

13:00pm | Lunchtime Masterclass – Three Girls

Exclusive lunch time session. Limited places avalible! Book your delegate pass to register your interest!

Three Girls – meet the team behind this brutally challenging factual drama. A BBC Studios production in association with Studio Lambert.

Susan Hogg
Head of Drama
Studio Lambert

Simon Lewis

Philippa Lowthorpe

Nicole Taylor

Hilary Salmon
Head of Drama London
BBC Studios

Kate Leys
Script Editor

13:45pm | Children’s drama & comedy

CBBC’s Cheryl Taylor explains the strategy behind the looming restructure in BBC Children’s and how it will impact on the corporation’s plans for scripted content for children, from pre-school to younger teens. The Children’s Department has received a major budget boost – how will this impact on content commissioning? Channel 5’s Milkshake! and Nickelodeon discuss current programming needs and how each is looking to work with new talent.

Cheryl Taylor

Nina Hahn
Senior Vice President, International Production and Development

Sarah Muller
Head of Children’s
Channel 5

14:30pm | How I got my show commissioned – Tin Star

From development through to pitch and greenlight, how did  Tin Star get commissioned by Sky Atlantic?

Cameron Roach
Commissioning editor

Alison Jackson
Executive producer

15:10pm |The high end drama revolution

Netflix and Amazon have changed audience expectations and Game of Thrones is pushing budgetary boundaries. How can British broadcasters and producers become big players in the high end revolution?

Faith Penhale
Joint CEO and creative director
Lookout Point

Anne Mensah
Head of drama

Stuart Woodward
Media Finance, Senior Relationship Manger
Bank Leumi (UK) plc

Sara Johnson
Vice President, Scripted Drama
Fox Networks Group, Europe & Africa

16:05pm | Stranger than fiction

Dramas such as Mrs Biggs, The Moorside and Little Boy Blue have won critical acclaim and huge audiences. Hear from Jeff Pope the genius behind these stand-out programmes about how to turn sensitive, real life stories into compelling drama.

Jeff Pope
Writer and executive producer

16:55pm | Amazon – ramping up its originals

Industry commentators predict the online giant is gearing up to accelerate its drive into scripted following The Grand Tour coup. Georgia Brown, Amazon’s newly appointed Director of Original TV for Europe, in her first interview, unveils her strategy to invest in more original UK content made in Europe.

Georgia Brown
Director, European Originals
Amazon Studios

Day Two – Non-scripted

9:35am | Entertainment’s big hitters

Supremos from Channel 4, BBC, UKTV and ITV Sky discuss the escalating scale of entertainment shows, whether gameshows and quizzes will ever make a mainstream comeback, and what lessons have been learned from Love Island’s sexy summer success.

Ed Havard
Head of entertainment TV events and sport
Channel 4

Rachel Ashdown
Commissioning editor entertainment

Phil Edgar Jones
Director of Sky Arts and head of entertainment

Amanda Stavri
Commissioning Editor, Comedy & Entertainment

Hilary Rosen
Deputy director of commissioning

10:40am | BBC Specialist Factual in the spotlight

Tom McDonald and his team lift the lid on their ambitions for stand out programming across science, religion, history and natural history. Which genres are set for a shake up, and how do he and his team plan to innovate in each of the genres.

Tom McDonald
Head of natural history and specialist factual

Fatima Salaria
Commissioning editor religion and ethics

Craig Hunter
Commissioning editor, science and factual scotland

Simon Young
Commissioning editor, history

11:50am | How I got my show commissioned – Bad Habits: Holy Order

From development through to pitch and greenlight, how did Bad Habits:Holy Orders make it onto Channel 5?

Guy Davies
Commissioning Editor, Factual
Channel 5

Elaine Hackett
Creative Director
Crackit Productions

12:15pm | Breathing new life into lifestyle

Cookery, health, property, travel – which broadcasters are best placed to reinvigorate some of TV’s most enduring staples? What’s the appetite for cookery, do property shows need some renovation, and what sort of shape is health programming in?

Gill Wilson
Head of features
Channel 4

Priya Singh
Commissioning Editor, Fact Ent

Emma Westcott
Commissioning editor, factual
Channel 5

Ed Sayer
Head of Original Commissioning
Discovery Networks International

Helen Nightingale
Commissioning editor

13:50pm | How I Got My Show Commissioned: Gifted

From development through to pitch and greenlight, how did Gifted make it onto BBC Two?

Danny Horan
Commissioning Editor

Edmund Coulthard
Founder & Creative Director
Blast Films

14:15pm | David Brindley in Conversation with Hannah Wyatt

In his first major interview since taking the helm as the BBC’s head of popular factual and factual entertainment, David Brindley reveals what’s on his shopping list for new series and formats. Can he find the next big returnable hits?

David Brindley
Head of popular factual & fact ent


Hannah Wyatt
Managing Director

15:20pm | Competition and creativity at Channel 5

Channel 5’s evolution continues under Ben Frow as the Viacom-owned broadcaster grows and diversify its acclaimed original slate to deliver shows that resonate, reward and ultimately rate. With another strong year under its belt, the Channel 5 team talk origination, opportunities and how the channel will shape up in the coming months

Ben Frow
Director of Programmes
Channel 5

Sean Doyle
Commissioning Editor
Channel 5

Lara Akeju
Commissioning executive
Channel 5

Seb Cardwell
Co-Channel Manager & Commissioning Executive
5STAR & Channel 5

16:10pm | How I Got My Show Commissioned – First Impressions

From Development through to pitch and greenlight, how did First Impressions get commissioned by Channel 4

Lucy Leveugle
Commissioning Editor, Factual Entertainment
Channel 4

Lucy Bacon
Head of Factual development
Wall to Wall

16:35pm | The evolution of UKTV

Different slots, more genres, broader target audiences – UKTV is evolving its slate of channels and commissioning five times more originations than five years ago. Director of commissioning Richard Watsham outlines the new strategy and how the production sector can help him execute it.

Richard Watsham
Director of Commissioning