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London, Wednesday 10 January: With support from the UK’s leading independent factual production companies, The Grierson Trust’s 2018 DocLab training scheme is now open for applications.


The Grierson DocLab offers:

* financial support for trainees plus work placements supported by bursaries

* a dynamic programme of workshops and masterclasses

* access to award-winning industry professionals

* structured mentoring support

* the chance to attend the internationally recognised Sheffield Doc/Fest

* a fantastic opportunity for 18 – 25 year olds to gain their first foothold in the documentary industry.

From learning basic camera skills to pitching a concept, this is a chance for 12 aspiring filmmakers to turn their documentary passion into reality.

Lorraine Heggessey, Chairman of The Grierson Trust said: “DocLab continues to go from strength to strength and our talented mentees are really starting to shine in the industry.  This shows how important it is to give young people from a range of backgrounds the chance to get a foot in the door of the documentary industry, as all too often it is lack of opportunity rather than lack of talent that is the barrier to entry. With support from many of the UK’s top executives and production companies the Grierson DocLab is one of the best ways for young people to start their documentary careers.”

Now in its sixth year, DocLabbers are making a significant impact in the industry: last year alone Ryan Gregory won the inaugural BBC Three Northern Docs Pitch at Sheffield Doc/Fest; Roshan Roberts began her contract as a BBC 3 Production Trainee; and, Dershe Samaria and Cherish Oteka were announced as two of Edinburgh’s Ones To Watch.

Grierson DocLab 2017 alumna, Rosa Galvin agrees: “Before I started Grierson DocLab I was lacking in confidence and was confused about what I wanted to do and could achieve in my career. The course has been challenging at times and I’ve had to do things that put me out of my comfort zone but this has helped me grow as a filmmaker and given me a much greater sense of direction.”

The Trust additionally provides ongoing bespoke support for participants as they progress with their career choice within the sector. This opportunity is for new entrants aged 18-25, and will support a variety of roles behind the camera.

Further details and application forms are available from or at

The closing date for applications for a place on this year’s DocLab  is 5pm, Tuesday 3 April 2018.


For more information:

Fiona Williams


Notes to Editors:

Application Criteria:

Applicants must:

  • Be aged between 18-25 at the time of applying.
  • Be UK residents
  • If at college or university be in their final year of study.
  • Be new entrants (that is have no more than three months worth of work experience)
  • They must be available to attend the selection day on Wednesday 25 April, in central Birmingham.
  • Be available to attend all days of the lab (Sunday 20 May arriving late afternoon – end of Thursday 24 May).
  • Be available to attend the Sheffield Documentary Festival between Friday 8 to Monday 11 June.
  • Be available for a two week paid placement at a time to be agreed.


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