Round 8 results - ACF awards £334k to 17 new projects

  • Audio Content Fund issues another £334k of grant funding for new public service content
  • Projects from 16 indies include documentaries, comedy, sport, and short-form
  • The projects will reach an estimated 9.3 million listeners on at least 40 radio stations
  • Broadcasters include Magic, talkSPORT, KISS, Times Radio, Union Jack, and Absolute Radio

The Audio Content Fund has announced the recipients of grant funding for 17 more public service radio projects that will be broadcast across commercial and community radio in the UK.

The projects will all be produced by independent production companies, 11 of which are based outside London, with seven indies receiving funding from the Audio Content Fund for the first time.

The fund, which is financed by the UK Government, has allocated £334k to the projects, and estimates the content will be heard by 9.3m listeners.

The bids come with commitments of broadcast on at least 40 different radio stations, with broadcast partners from Bauer, Wireless, Communicorp UK, Fun Kids, Union Jack and a range of community radio stations across the country.

The 17 funded projects are:

In The Beginning – Social Broadcasts, for Fun Kids
Dramatised primal creation myths from around the world for young listeners. Addressing the most profound human questions: Who are we and Why are we here?

What’s Wrong With You? – Made in Manchester, for Union Jack
Comedy panel show that explores the ever-changing world of disability, looking at the perceptions, taboos and clichés that are all sadly still present in 21st century Britain.

Dance Britannia – This is Distorted, for Union Jack Dance
Music documentary series presented by Sister Bliss, telling the stories of the dance artists that have shaped the scene and helped put home-grown music on the International stage.

Songs From The Terraces: History Of The Football Chant – Marigold Audio for talkSPORT
Single documentary telling the story of football’s most iconic chants, from their surprising beginnings to now, including the creative, innovative, controversial and offensive.

Cooler Runnings – Anything But Footy, for talkSPORT
A series of short profile-pieces, stripped daily during the Winter Olympics and Winter Paralympic Games, focusing on new and lesser-known snow and ice sports.

Heartlands – Burning Bright Productions, for Times Radio
A five-part journey around Britain painting a picture of what Work looks like in 2021. Visiting former industrial epicentres, aiming to uncover which new industries are thriving and how working culture has evolved.

In Plain Sight? – Ocean City Media, for Times Radio
True crime meets feminist firepower as journalist and campaigner Julie Bindel tackles the fierce debate around the nature of the sex industry, in this multi-part short form series.

XS Manchester Foodstock – 2ZY Ltd, for XS Manchester
A collection of short, factual packages profiling the work of charities and community groups that support Mancunians living in food poverty. Launched with an Outside Broadcast, and rounded off with live-inserts from the Manchester Foodstock food and music festival.

Young People Changing The World – W!ZARD Radio Ltd, for KISS FM and KISS Fresh
An inspirational series of five shorts, hosted by Daisy Maskell, focusing on young people working to make a change in their communities. Covering issues such as hygiene poverty, LGBTQ+ rights, modern slavery, young women’s street safety and non-binary/pronouns.

The Women Of Country: Through The Decades – Audio Always, for
Absolute Radio Country, Downtown Country and the Absolute Radio network

Six-part documentary series shining a spotlight on the incredible impact women have made in country music. Broadcast in full on Absolute Radio Country and Downtown Country, with decade-specific packages across the Absolute Radio Network.

How Gay is God? – by Loftus Media, for Hits Radio and Hits Radio Pride
Short stories from LGBT+ people about their relationship with faith  – for many, it can be uplifting and inspirational, but also painful and excluding. Asking big questions about sex, God, identity, and equality with powerful and surprising human stories.

Magic’s Menopause Month – Audio Always, for Magic
A four-week long campaign to educate listeners with facts about the menopause, combining real life stories with practical health advice, raising awareness of the subject and supporting women across the UK. Hosted by Emma B, rounded off with a 2hr weekend special.

Live From The Witch Trials – The Foghorn Company, for a network of stations across Northern Ireland
Tri-lingual ten-part series telling the story of The Islandmagee Witch Trials of 1711 for Halloween. A spooky, disturbing and thrilling way to bring history to life on the radio.

The Dating Game…and HIV+ – Positive Media Company CIC, for Gaydio
Online dating can be a minefield at the best of times, but imagine adding your HIV+ status to your profile and bio!? This series will share real-life stories, in a tongue-in-cheek format, across a week-long focus, and follow-up with a 1hr documentary.

Black and Gay, Back in the Day – Aunt Nell Ltd, for Gaydio
An undiscovered photographic archive brought to life through subversive storytelling. Fronted by a rotation of Black LGBTQIA+ hosts, allowing the listener to reflect back on the past, while the hosts shine a light on the future.

Bhangra Bhat – Demus Productions, for a network of South Asian radio stations
Ravi Sagoo presents a series of six conversation and music programmes that chart the history of Bhangra and Asian music across Britain, through the music picked by six prominent contributors to the British Asian music scene. 

Like a Fine Wine – Sonder Radio, for a network of Community Radio stations
Road-trip series, narrated by Oz Clarke, using the vehicle of a wine-tasting tour with a group of elders to explore themes of life, ageing and appreciating the world around us.

Mukti Jain Campion, Panel Member of the Audio Content Fund, said:

“In this third year of the Audio Content Fund it’s been really pleasing to see such a diverse range of confident bids across so many different genres. The successful projects, from established indies and newcomers alike, will add great public service content to commercial and community radio stations and we’re sure they will delight their audiences.”

All the projects will be produced and broadcast in the next 12 months.  The next ACF funding round opens on 4 January for projects to be broadcast in 2022.