A self shooting observational documentary producer/director making engaging, thought-provoking films about real people, often filming over extended timeframes.

The Country Council : Synopsis

3x 60’
My Role
Series Director
Narrated by
James Cosmo
Exec Producer BBC
David Harron
Exec Producer for Firecracker Scotland
Elspeth O’Hare
Series Producer
Bianca Barker
Prod Co
Firecracker Scotland
BBC1 Scotland
Transmission Date
9pm, Thurs 19th Oct
9pm, Thurs 26th Oct
9pm, Thurs 2nd Nov

Councils across Scotland are in the midst of challenging budget cuts, and with higher demand than ever for public services, the pressure on local authorities has never been greater. From education to housing, repairing the roads and emptying our bins, this series will focus on the council services that illustrate the universal social issues and budget challenges that councils face every day across Scotland.


With access to Argyll and Bute Council, where half of the population is concentrated in six towns and the rest scattered amongst rural communities and twenty three islands, we’ll follow council staff on the frontline as they deliver services to some of the UK’s most remote areas. Filmed across some of Scotland’s most breath taking landscapes, we uncover the unsung heroes who travel hundreds of miles daily to bring care to their clients, island staff who work not one but sometimes six different council jobs and the amazing frontline workers supporting families in crisis. This series brings the unique challenges and joys of working hundreds of miles from the nearest city to provide those services in difficult times.

Ep 1

The first episode looks at the work of Desmond Middleton, one of only two council debt counsellors covering the entire region of Argyll and Bute at a time when one in six of us are struggling with debt. We follow the housing officers in Rothesay as they tackle issues of isolation across Bute and we gain a rare window into the council run airport in Oban, which provides a lifeline to the islands and communities it serves.


Ep 2

In the second episode in the series of three we follow council staff the length and breadth of the region, from Oban to Rothesay, Dunoon to Jura. We look at the demanding work of the health visitors on the frontline who are dealing with a rise in autism diagnosis, the tough decisions being made in the face of an ever increasing ageing population and we see the what it is like to be one of those council workers everyone loves to hate – a parking warden.

Ep 3

In the final episode of this three-part series, we meet the council workers going above-and-beyond to improve local lives. The Learning Disability team in Lochgilphead help a client with Down Syndrome towards his dream of becoming a club DJ. In Oban, a Homelessness worker comes to the aid of a young mother in crisis who needs a permanent home. And in Dunoon, a coastal regeneration project leads to a surprise discovery - and a fascinating link to the area’s past.