2020 media industry report—a look at what’s changed in Leeds

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    • 26th March 2020

    Over the last few years, Leeds’ media landscape has seen some dramatic changes.

    ITV and BBC Look North famously make their home here, but they’ve been joined by a host of other exciting media companies.

    In this article, we’ll be taking a closer look at what Leeds’ media industry has to offer in 2020. 

    Television Growth in Yorkshire 

    One of the most high-profile arrivals in recent years was Channel 4, who moved their headquarters to Leeds in 2019. They’ve been joined by production company ITN, who are setting up a new studio on Aire Street. Since ITN’s clients include BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5, establishing premises here seems like a savvy move. 

    The wider Yorkshire area has also been enjoying a boost in media production. As York Press reports, Yorkshire is now regarded as a great place for production, TV dramas and even big-budget films. Popular shows like Gentleman Jack, Peaky Blinders and Downton Abbey were all produced in and around the Yorkshire area. No other area of the country has enjoyed the same media boost that Yorkshire has. 

    Screen Yorkshire, an investment service founded in 2002, reports its new film office has handled over 360 enquiries in its first year of operation. Highlights include 27 high-end TV productions and 14 feature films, which have generated 1,500 days of work for regional crews. 

    Key media industry outlets in Leeds

    TV Channels 

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    Here are some of the most famous TV channels that have a permanent studio in Leeds:

    Film Production Companies

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    The abundance of TV and film studios has created new opportunities for production companies, both old and new. Highlights of the Leeds scene include: 

    ITN Productions (set to open an office in Aire Street)

    Gaming Companies

    red playstation controller

    Of course, film and TV aren’t the only players in Leeds’ media industry. Video games are phenomenally popular nowadays, and Leeds’ indie gaming industry is thriving as a result.

    What media jobs are most sought after in Leeds?

    The future of Leeds’ media production looks promising in the long run. The city has produced more than 300 hours of television in the last twelve months, with several studios opening in the city centre. Channel 4’s arrival and several new commissions are also highly promising. 

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    To give you a clearer picture of Leeds’ media landscape, we’ve gathered this list of the most sought-after media jobs:

    1. Animator

    Animators create drawings, models or computer images that give the illusion of movement, using briefs from both a storyboard and director. Animators are artists, actors and storytellers; they understand how people show emotion, and they understand—on a technical level—how things move.

    2. Videographer

    In our previous article on the hottest digital marketing jobs in Leeds, we mentioned that videographers were in high demand. Digital marketing agencies count on videographers for social and online content. They’re essential for film production studios, which are clearly on the rise in Leeds.

    Videographers need technical and editorial skills, as well as a good grasp of storytelling and business knowledge. They should also be able to develop creative, unique ideas, and grow the visual aspects of a storyboard.

    3. 3D Visualiser

    These professionals create 3D designs for animations, as well as virtual or augmented reality. While it’s related to conventional animation work, 3D visualisation is more specialised and growing in demand. As a rule, animators focus on characters while 3D visualisers focus on location designs, both interior and exterior.

    4. Digital Producer / Executive Producer

    Professionals in this field have many different responsibilities.

    They have to win contracts for work, put together teams, draw up budgets and deliver projects. There’s a growing demand for digital content specialists in this area.

    5. Technical Artist 

    Technical artists act as a bridge between artists and programmers. They develop games engines that are as intuitive as possible for digital artists to use.

    If an artist wants to create something complex, a technical artist can tell them how feasible it is from a technical standpoint. They can also work out the best way of bringing an artist’s idea to life. 

    Two reasons to choose a media jobs recruitment agency

    While there are plenty of general recruiters to partner with on a job hunt, you might find a media jobs recruitment agency better if you want to work in Leeds’ media industry. 

    cameraman taking a specialist shot outdoors

    1. Creative understanding

    General recruiters can send you several different job roles, but these may not be suitable for your skill set. Specialist creative recruiters like Gloss ensure that your talents aren’t being sold short.

    2. Local media industry insight

    Every city has its own vibe, and that notion applies to individual creative industries as well. As we’ve established, Leeds’ media industry is changing rapidly, with an impressive growth rate. Although we’re in unusual circumstances at the moment, we expect that to pick up at the same rate in the future.

    Photo Finish

    Leeds has plenty to offer media professionals, whether they’re interested in pursuing film, TV shows or video games. Professionals working in adjacent fields—like videography—might also find their skills in high demand. 

    The media landscape in Leeds has never been more diverse and exciting, and it presents some great opportunities for anyone just entering the job market. Although the coronavirus is having a severe impact on the economy, we fully expect the film industry to bounce back in the future, at the same rate as it has before. 

    If you’re thinking of dipping your toe into the media job market, why not send us your CV? You can do so via our Contact Us page; alternatively, you can call us directly on 0870 3219788

    Want to check out some of our past advice? Browse our News section to find tips and tricks for all kinds of creative professionals. Signing up to our newsletter (via the Contact Us page) also sends all our advice, updates and how-tos directly to your inbox.