Steven Knight drama showcases West Midlands locations

This TownSteven Knight’s new 1980s-set drama, This Town, filmed at Digbeth Loc. Studios and on locations around the West Midlands. 

West Midlander Knight has long been a champion of the region as a creative talent pool, and is the driving force behind Birmingham's  Digbeth Loc. Studios, now part of a rapidly-expanding production hub in the city. 

Set in Birmingham and Coventry in the early 1980s, This Town began filming in late November 2022 and shot for four months, the first major drama to use the studio, and across various locations locations including West Bromwich, Wolverhampton, Birmingham’s Druids Heath and Stoke. 

The 6 x 60’ drama opens in 1981 at a time of huge social tensions and unrest, and follows the story of a band’s formation against a backdrop of turmoil violence. It is produced by Kudos (a Banijay UK company) and Nebulastar for the BBC, co-produced with Mercury Studios, in association with Kudos North, Stigma Films and Nick Angel.

Michelle Dockery in This Town

Knight told the BBC: “I wanted to do something partly from my own experience, as I grew up in an environment not entirely dissimilar. The music was around at the time and for us it was ‘other’, it was different and everyone liked it. I’m not trying to set out to make a political or social point at all, but at this time a particular thing happened where a particular type of music attracted equally black and white people.


"They danced to and made that music together, not in order to prove a point and not as a consequence of any sort of pressure but because that’s just what happened. I thought that was quite an important thing to illustrate.

“It’s depicting working class life without any sense of sorrow or pity and, rather than that, seeing the glory and the glamour of it. I’ve always thought motorways at night are very beautiful so the M6 is a big character in this, and - not necessarily to live in but to look at - huge, big tower blocks, looking down from the top to the rest of the world. I wanted to get all of that in. Luckily our brilliant director Paul Whittington has made it look like a painting.”

Header image credit: BBC/Banijay Rights/Kudos/Robert Viglasky.
Michelle Dockery image credit: BBC/Banijay Rights/Kudos.


Also on The Knowledge

Tatton Studios & Locations

Garden Studios