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Wednesday 24 Sep 2014

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BBC Radio Drama Manchester announces winner of Alfred Bradley Bursary Award 2009

Chris Wilson is the winner of the ninth biennial Alfred Bradley Bursary Award with his play Playing The Game.

The bursary was established to commemorate the life and work of radio producer Alfred Bradley, and is one of the most prestigious radio drama awards in the country.

The judges – Jeremy Howe (Commissioning Editor, Radio 4), Kate Rowland (Creative Director, BBC Writersroom), Susan Roberts (Executive Producer, Radio Drama North), writer David Nobbs, poet and playwright Amanda Dalton and actor Shobna Gulati – selected Playing The Game from more than 400 entries.

Chris Wilson said: "The award is a huge honour... I would have never normally thought about writing for radio drama, but the Alfred Bradley Bursary Award gave me the incentive to send in my play and see what happened."

In addition to a bursary of £3,000, Chris will also be considered for a BBC Radio 4 commission and have the opportunity to develop further ideas into future commissions.

Playing The Game is a monologue for a teenaged boy, who has to negotiate his dad's growing relationship with his aunt after his mother's death, his ambitions to be a footballer, school bullies and his acne.

Chris Wilson is a sports journalist and editor for the Press Association. He also provides a freelance features writing service to regional papers and PR agencies.

Chris has only recently entered the world of dramatic writing, however, and has just completed a Creative Writing diploma at the University of Hull.

The runners up are Tom Wells, with his play God And That, and Ben Ayrton with White Horses. Both writers received £1,000 bursary money and will receive a year's mentorship with a producer.

One script was highly commended by the judges, Maine Road by Sarah McDonald Hughes, and two scripts were commended, Faith by Alexandra Denye and Driftwood Something Something by Paul Buie.

Sarah, Alexandra and Paul will all receive mentorship and have the chance to develop their scripts and further ideas for the Radio 4 offers round.

Notes to Editors

Previous winners include Lee Hall, who won in 1994 with I Luv You Jimmy Spud. He went on to write the critically acclaimed Spoonface Steinberg for BBC Radio and the Golden Globe winning film Billy Elliot.

Peter Straughan, 1998 winner, wrote The Ghost Of Frederico Garcia Lorca Which Can Also Be Used As A Table, broadcast on BBC Radio 3. His Radio 4 commissions include When We Were Queens, in 2000, adapted from his own stage play, his adaptation of Andrew Motion's book Wainewright The Poisoner, and Centurions which he co-wrote with Bridget O'Connor for Woman's Hour.

Notes on the Alfred Bradley Bursary Award

  • Established to commemorate the life and work of Alfred Bradley, it is one of the most prestigious and generous awards for dramatists in the country.
  • The award is open to Northern-based writers who have already had a small amount of work published or produced but who have not had a Radio Drama commission.
  • It is unique in its dedication to encouraging writing for radio drama.
  • The entries are anonymous until judging is complete.

Alfred Bradley (1925-1991)

  • Alfred Bradley joined the BBC in 1959 as a radio producer in Leeds, moving to Manchester in 1971.
  • His work with the BBC over 24 years was widely recognised as outstanding and he won many awards.
  • Alfred set out to enhance the drama tradition of the North of England, broadcasting the work of the region's writers and actors to national audiences.
  • Among the dramatists he helped to launch during his career were Alan Plater, Keith Waterhouse, Alan Ayckbourn, Stan Barstow and Alun Owen.


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