Recruitment begins for UK’s pioneering Location Manager Training Course
The highly-esteemed Assistant Location Manager Training course is starting to recruit its latest intake of students. The scheme’s curriculum is generally recognised as one of the most comprehensive Location Manager training courses in the world, featuring a range of key topics such as: Photography, Presentation, Running a Unit Base, and Security and Traffic Management.
Film London began developing the course’s innovative curriculum under the guidance of Harriet Lawrence over fourteen years ago, and the Production Guild of Great Britain became custodians until funding ran out in 2015. After a brief interlude, the project was revitalised in 2019 by its current organisers, Location Collective. The group is now working closely alongside Harriet to equip students with the appropriate expertise to establish thriving careers in this exciting yet competitive field. “Training the next generation of Location Managers, and giving them the skills to step up, has long been a passion of mine,” explains Harriet. “It is so important that we run this course again, and I am delighted that the Collective has once again agreed to administer it, and that our sponsors are continuing to support us.”
The course typically takes place one weekend a month, over six months, with assignments set between each meet-up. Students are taught by the nation’s most successful Location Managers, offering an introduction to an invaluable network of experienced mentors. Supervising Location Manager Ben Bailey was an attendee in 2009, and he currently helps run the programme. He states: “The course has had a massive effect on my career in many ways. I found that not only the content of the course was integral but the contacts I made has shaped where I am today. Many elements of the job were taught by leading Location Managers of the time. They shared knowledge and different techniques that I have used moving forward. This laid a great foundation and understanding of how to do the job and has undoubtedly helped with my progression."
Students from the 2020 cohort are similarly pleased with the course’s myriad offerings. Celia Linnett describes the scheme as “a nurturing place where it’s safe asking the ‘stupid’ questions” as well as “a supportive community of peers within the industry.” Echoing Celia's sentiments, Rob Morecraft reasons that he “loved the environment of learning together” because the group “felt open to accept all questions, and it was very supporting.”
The training scheme had to adapt to the pandemic’s various obstacles – many lectures migrated online, and in 2020-21 the course ran over a year rather than six months. As the industry gradually begins to return to normality, course organisers are welcoming new students to discover how their work in the current climate could benefit from access to its expert network of specialist mentors.
“Location Collective is extremely proud to support Harriet with this unique trail blazing course and help train the next generation of UK Assistant Location Managers," declares the organisation's Industry & Partnerships specialist Lottie Mason. “As the UK Film & TV industry has boomed, Location Collective have increasingly witnessed first-hand the shortage of crew and the difficulty Location departments have in finding experienced, reliable team members.”
“Having run the Assistant Location Manager Training Course for nearly 15 years, I am very aware that in 2021 we have a current climate of too much work… and many crew are jumping up the ladder probably sooner than they would like,” Harriet elaborates. “The Location Department is a complex and varied role which underpins other departments, and the better we do our job, the less anyone knows what we do! We are looking forward to working with some of the top Location Managers in the country to help the juniors in the Location Department learn the art of Location Managing.” Registration for this groundbreaking training course is open for new students and applicants should apply by 10th October 2021.
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