Tom McDonald, Director of Factual at BBC Studios Productions, today announced an expansion of The Documentary Unit and the arrival of new senior hires across Documentary & Digital.

Factual Salford, with its expertise in consumer, topical, access & live is to be merged with The Documentary Unit meaning that Factual will now be comprised of three distinct genre areas: The Documentary Unit, The Natural History Unit & The Science Unit. Amy Flanagan will continue to work as Head of The Documentary Unit.

McDonald and Flanagan are appointing a number of creatives into The Documentary Unit:

Cate Hall, who joined BBC Studios Productions earlier this year, will take on the role of Creative Director, Development. Alan Holland, currently Creative Director for Factual Salford, will take on an expanded role as Creative Director, Scotland and Salford, driving new business and overseeing the Glasgow, Aberdeen and Salford hubs. Kirsty Cunningham has been appointed as Head of Programmes, London and Cardiff, overseeing programming from those creative bases. Cunningham joins from 72 Films, will be based in London and will take up her post in January.

Between Hall, Holland and Cunningham, their recent Executive Producer credits include a raft of successful factual programmes such as Rise of The Nazis, Rise of the Murdochs, Ambulance, Our Cops in The North, Horizon: What’s the Matter with Tony Slattery? and Health Check UK Live.

In addition, there are three further people joining The Documentary Unit. Joe Mather, Executive Producer, and Juliet Piper, Producer, will both join Factual from BBC Studios Factual Entertainment where they will build on their roster of crime programming from Cardiff. Carl Doran will also be joining The Documentary Unit on attachment from BBC Public Service as Executive Producer, Sport starting in January 2021.

Outside of The Documentary Unit, McDonald has bolstered Factual’s Digital Team. Working to creative lead Georgia Moseley, Molly Milton has been hired as Executive Producer OnScreen Talent and Arif Zaman – based in San Francisco – will join as Executive Producer – Originals, Partnerships and Talent. Both bring with them years of experience of working with emerging talent and with digital platforms.

Tom McDonald, Director of Factual, BBC Studios Production says: “Both the Documentary Unit & the Digital Team have had significant success this year despite the challenges of a global pandemic, so this is the perfect moment to strengthen the creative leadership in both teams.  As well as ensuring there will be senior editorial and production staff in each of our bases, evolving into three factual units also presents us with a clearer face to market. I’m thrilled that these new senior hires will be bringing their ideas, energy and creativity to BBC Studios Factual.”


Jon Creamer

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