TV facilities company Barcud Derwen in administration


TV facilities group Barcud Derwen has gone into administration with the loss of 35 jobs in Caernarfon.

The group, which also has media companies in Cardiff, Bristol and Glasgow, told staff on Tuesday.

Adminstrators Grant Thornton said they "regrettably" closed the Caernarfon operation but were working hard to sell the other businesses within 48 hours.

In a separate development, Caernarfon-based independent TV company Antena issued redundancy notices to 25 staff.

The administration affects Barcud Derwen Cyfyngedig, Derwen Ltd, Barcud Derwen (Scotland) Ltd, Awen Cyfyngedig, Eclipse (Creative) Ltd and 422 Ltd.

'Difficult trading'

Alistair Wardell, Cardiff-based partner of Grant Thornton, said the joint administrators and Grant Thornton staff were working towards achieving a sale of the business and assets of the companies, with the exception of the Caernarfon division, within the next 24-48 hours.

"While the group has suffered difficult trading conditions in recent time, there remain a number of very good businesses within it, which we are working very hard to secure," he added.

Mr Wardell added the administrators had been "encouraged by the response of possible purchasers and we continue to hold discussions with a number of them".

In a statement the administrators said that "regrettably" the Caernarfon division, which employs approximately 30 staff, has been closed immediately."

Mr Wardell said his staff would be liaising with employees affected.

Assembly broadcaster

"It is also possible that certain staff employed within the Caernarfon division may be required to perform paid services to us in the event that a third party producer will wish to occupy the studio at Caernarfon for the the short-term, but these discussions are at an early stage," he added.

The company is said to be the largest TV facilities firm outside London.

It is the host broadcaster of coverage of the National Assembly in Cardiff Bay.

The Assembly Commission said there is a business continuity plan in place to ensure continued coverage of proceedings.

S4C said it could not make a statement about Barcud Derwen but "we will ensure there is no disruption to the service for our viewers".

More job cuts

In another development in the television industry in north Wales TV production company Antena has confirmed that 25 members of staff have been issued with redundancy notices.

The company currently employs 55 people and up until the end of May produced the long-running young people's weekly magazine programme Uned 5 for S4C.

According to Iestyn Garlick, one of the company directors, the decision arises from S4C's decision to bring Uned 5 to an end.

"Around six months ago S4C announced that Uned 5 was coming to and end and that they were starting a new service for young people over 13 years of age," he said.

"Antena has been given work as part of this new service but that new programme does not start until January 2011."

The new contract will not sustain the same level of staff as was needed for Uned 5, Mr Garlick added

"We have tried to retain as many technical and production staff as possible as we have recently invested heavily in new technology," he said.

Mr Garlick added the company was looking for new contracts with S4C, BBC and ITV.

"In the meantime work will continue with our corporate and web design department, " he said.

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