PACEY contacted Rollem Productions directly regarding the portrayal of a childminder in the BBC One series 'In The Club'.
Those that tuned in, would have seen there were a whole host of inaccuracies in the last two episodes, and while ‘Diane’ the childminder was inevitably suspended, the storyline did not show that registered childminders are professionals, in fact they were depicted in quite a negative light.
PACEY watched the show, and also received a number of complaints from our members about the serious errors made. Yesterday we requested a statement from the production team which we could publish on our social media channels. We have asked them to provide an overview of the research that was undertaken and how they intend to act on complaints made
We have just receieved the following response from Rollem Productions, a company set up by Kay Mellor:
Thank you very much for getting in touch and we do welcome your feedback.
Whilst we do consult relevant professionals at all stages of the writing process the drama is purely fictional - and as with any drama we have to take dramatic license sometimes to make the story work. It is not Kay’s intention to cause distress but to look at a variety of situations - some of which involve human and professional errors to make the drama as compelling as possible (increasing conflict and therefore making it dramatic). Kay is fully aware that Diane should not have acted in the way she did but this was all part of the dramatic effect. Diane also acknowledges she has done wrong.
Diane’s character is certainly not meant to be representative of all childminders.
Not wishing to give the plot away and remembering the drama is purely fiction Diane does not return to work as a childminder.
Liz Bayram, PACEY's Chief Executive, said “Whilst PACEY was happy to receive such a prompt response from Rollem Productions, we did not think it went far enough in reassuring us this sort of issue will not happen again in the future. We recognise that dramatic licence is part of fictional programme making, but it should not give programme makers permission to include factual inaccuracies.
“Despite receiving a letter from Rollem Productions (as did many other organisations and individuals who complained), PACEY decided to be more proactive on this. Given such a high level of concern amongst our childminder members, we have offered our expertise freely to Rollem Productions so they have improved expert advice in the future. We have also contacted a number of other TV production companies offering to do the same for them.
"As childcare becomes more and more part of families everyday lives, PACEY is working hard to ensure childminding and other forms of childcare are better understood and valued by programme makers and, through them, society more generally. We hope that the offer from PACEY, to be the go-to source for early years advice and expertise for these programme makers, will ensure inaccuracies can be avoided in the future.”