A film production company have set up a grassroots scheme to support emerging documentary makers in Lancashire.

Northern Heart Films, founded by Scott Bradley and Natasha Hawthornthwaite from Blackburn with Darwen, first set up the ‘Northern Heart Doc Fund’ in 2022.

The scheme is built to aid the making of a short documentary over the course of six months.

Sam Oddie, one of the three filmmakers who received the grant last year, said: “Northern Heart genuinely cares about us. Whatever we needed they would actively go out and source.”

Lancashire Telegraph: Natasha and Scott at Leigh Film FactoryNatasha and Scott at Leigh Film Factory (Image: Northern Heart)

Natasha, co-founder of Northern Heart, said: “Chances of funding are even slimmer when you're based in the North, outside of London and you’re from a working class background.

“As filmmakers ourselves we know that many start by making short independent films, mostly with zero funding. These shorts are so important as they act as calling cards for future funding and opportunities.

“We want to help those emerging filmmakers by providing a grant and wrap-around support so they can ensure their films have a professional quality and have a good chance of being seen by the right people.”

Applications are currently open for the 2023-24 fund. This year’s theme is ‘working class’, hoping to “offer a voice to the working class and shed light on their often-overlooked perspectives”

The three emerging filmmakers chosen will win a £1,000 grant courtesy of Wigan Council and Creative Lancashire.

Other prizes include a professional sound mix and colour grade at Sticks & Glass, an industry pass to Sheffield DocFest, and mentorship from the founders of Northern Heart.

The three filmmakers will also be invited to screen their films and take part in a Q&A at cinemas in the North and South, funded by Leigh Film Factory and Olympic Studios.

Co-founder Scott said: “This scheme is incredibly unique. It’s been set up by us, filmmakers for filmmakers. We don’t get paid to do this. It’s not set up for profit or because we need to tick boxes.

“We are passionate about telling proper stories and working with organisations that care. That passion expands to how we work behind the camera.

“We are supporting new filmmakers and challenging our industry leaders to do the same.”

The deadline for all applications is midnight on January 5. Visit northernheartfilms.com/docfund to apply.