16 Mar 2022
A joint bid from independent producers Tern TV and Green Inc. has won the competitive tender to produce Sunday Morning Live, BBC One’s popular religious discussion programme, from Northern Ireland.
The tendering of returning series forms part of the BBC’s contestability requirements and our commitment to commission the best programmes for audiences, regardless of who makes them.
The tender was launched in September 2021 and from a field of five shortlisted tenderers, Tern TV and Green Inc’s bid scored highest against the published criteria - across editorial proposal and capability, value for money, how it delivers against the BBC’s strategic priorities, and risk.
The contract will be for two years, and covers 24 episodes across two series per year. The programme will continue to be fronted by a roster of presenters who will explore the ethical and religious issues of the day and discuss the week’s talking points.
Sunday Morning Live was previously produced by BBC Studios who decided not to bid for the tender.
Daisy Scalchi, BBC Commissioning Editor, says: “This was an extremely competitive bidding process and we would like to commend the shortlisted producers for the high quality and comprehensive bids they put forward. We are delighted that this decision means that two established companies that are embedded in the Northern Ireland production community will be working together to deliver the very best programme for audiences.”
Executive Producers Brendan Hughes and Harry Bell, for Tern TV, and Stephen Stewart, for Green Inc comment below on the fantastic win for Green Inc, Tern TV and the Zinc Media group.
Harry Bell, Managing Director, Tern TV, says: “We are incredibly proud to have secured this contract. With our huge experience in faith programming, this is a very special moment for Tern. We are hugely passionate about giving a voice to communities of all kinds from all parts of the UK.
Our collaboration with Green Inc creates a Nations’ production powerhouse. Tern’s experience in specialist factual programming, factual formats and a pan-UK outlook perfectly matches Green Inc’s track record in live TV, studios and popular programming. Tern and Green Inc offer a winning partnership and a joint passion for the task ahead. This is also a great platform to look to the future and grow our buoyant Nations’ sectors. We are all very excited by this opportunity.”
Brendan Hughes, Head of Tern TV Belfast, comments: “Tern’s range of company bases across the UK gives us a unique footprint from which to create the best show possible. Sunday Morning Live combines lively entertainment with an ability to touch on weighty subject areas. The programme has evolved over recent series, so our ambition is to continue to develop the format to create a show that continually surprises and informs - and has a vibrant nationwide dynamic.”
Green Inc has a 25-year history of making popular fact ent formats, live entertainment and studio and OB series. With offices in Belfast and Dublin, and seven series currently in production their portfolio includes: over 1,500 hours of RTÉ’s flagship daily magazine The Afternoon Show; over 50 hours of Ireland’s Got Talent for Virgin Media One, made with Kite Entertainment; Crimewatch-style studio series Crime NI (10 x 40min for BBC Northern Ireland) and Crimecall (60 x 60mins for RTÉ), as well as The Case I Can’t Forget (Series 3) of one-hour crime documentaries for RTÉ made with RareTv, and Keepers of the Lough (the 12 x 30 min fact ent documentary series) for UTV.
Stephen Stewart, Founder, Green Inc, comments: “At the heart of this partnership is a trust and respect, as Brendan Hughes and I have known each other for almost 40 years. Green Inc is proud to be involved in this partnership. We are widely recognised as a leading producer of studio entertainment and fac-ent formats in the Nations, so are thrilled to have won this tender and to be co-producers with our friends at Tern for Sunday Morning Live.”