Pact and Bectu strike scripted terms agreement

Pact and Bectu strike scripted terms agreement

The months-long negotiations between Bectu and Pact over working conditions in drama have concluded successfully.

The union’s members voted 60/40 in favour of a revised TV Drama Agreement deal brought forward by the indie body after a ballot took place from 16 November to 10 December.


The deal sets out rules around pay and working conditions on sub-£7m per-hour scripted programmes from 1 January 2023.

A Pact spokeswoman said that the result will provide stability for the industry at a time of economic challenge.

“The agreement covers all scripted productions  including regional/ nations drama, kids and comedy that can be difficult to finance but are fundamental to the drama landscape because they are a training ground for new and diverse talent and crew members,” she added.

Head of Bectu Philippa Childs said it has been a “complex, protracted and at times difficult process”.


“We are pleased to have made some improvements but recognise there is still further progress to be made in addressing key issues that impact our members’ lives. We are confident this new agreement will provide a firm basis from which to move forward and we will maintain our commitment to improving work/life balance and changing the damaging long hours culture.”

She added that Bectu will closely monitor the new agreement’s implementation.

The parties have been at odds since Bectu members overwhelmingly rejected Pact’s initial offer in August.

They claimed there was a “lack of detail and clarity” surrounding the proposals, which included shorter working days, additional pay for prep and wrap, unsocial hours payments, double pay for bank holidays, and increased overtime.


Negotiations between the bodies initially broke down nine months ago, with the union threatening to terminate the existing agreement within six months.

There has been much back and forth between the two bodies, with Pact warning that dramas could move overseas if a settlement could not be reached, putting the future of scripted production in the UK at risk.


TV Drama Agreement

Shooting hours

Scheduled days can only be 10+1 – 10 hours worked plus 1 unpaid hour for lunch (11+1 days have been eliminated in TV Drama).

Sixth shooting days paid at 1.5T and non-shooting sixth days paid at a minimum of 10 hours for 6 hours worked or 1.5T if over 6 hours (2017 had no additional payment for sixth consecutive days).

A cap on split days for schedules over 7 weeks.


Weekends, early calls and nightwork

Workers will be given two weeks’ notice for weekend working.

Nightwork is now shooting hours from 11pm (rather than midnight) and compensated weekly instead of after the run of nights.

Dailies receive a rest day after night work.

Cancellation for dailies now from 1pm instead of 3pm.

Overtime, mileage and other allowances

Overtime cap has been increased to £70 per hour from £45.

Mileage is paid after 25 miles (30 miles in 2017 agreement).

Bank holidays are to be paid at 2T if worked and workers on band 4 will be paid at 1T if not worked (the 2017 agreement had no increased payment for bank holidays).

Grace periods have been abolished (under the 2017 agreement, production could call these twice for no additional pay).


Undefined ‘prep and wrap’ time has been replaced and limited to one paid hour per day.

The agreement now covers made for TV features and streamers.


This article first appeared on our sister site, Broadcast. 

Share this Article