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Outside Broadcasting

With our 15 tonne Outside Broadcasting truck, production work at the University of Bradford is not just tied to the campus. Using broadcast quality high-definition resources, the university regularly provides staffing and students for prime-time multicamera productions. 

For more information, contact the Faculty of Engineering & Informatics Broadcast AV technical team.

High Profile Events

The University's Outside Broadcasting truck has supported a number of high profile events over the years, including prime-time live BBC One productions. On all of these, students do not just shadow industry professionals, but work alongside, acting in key technical production roles. Here's a few of the highlights:

Students wearing talkback headsets standing next to the university outside broadcast truck

Students Dan Clark and Iulia Grama next to the University's Outside Broadcasting truck, working on 2017 General Election coverage.

Children in Need 2019

Pudsey went to the seaside in November 2019, as BBC Yorkshire's Children in Need coverage came from the Woodend Centre in Scarborough. This was a complex location to rig from, featuring external cameras with pyrotechnics and a long run between truck and venue. Three broadcast areas were provided with cameras hot-swapping between locations, including a complex opening dance number for the presenters and Pudsey bear!

As well as being half-crewed by university students, a third of the BBC Yorkshire crew were alumni from the University's media production courses.

Live from the Woodend Centre - we provided a mix of handheld cameras alongside cameras on tripods and portable outside broadcast pedestals.

Children in Need 2018

Chesterfield was the destination for Children in Need in 2018, with a trip to the historic Barrow Hill Roundhouse, a former Midland Railway engine shed, home to preserved locomotives. With a vast space to light, we provided a large selection of battery spots to illuminate the historic locomotives in the background. A complex band audio mix was provided directly in the venue with a PA system for the invited audience.

Presenters Owain and Amy with Pudsey Bear in Chesterfield

Children in Need 2017

The stunning newly refurbished Peace Hall in Halifax was the location for this exteror shot Children in Need extravagaza. With a large Childrens' choir providing a synchronised broadcast into the national programme, and chilly winter conditions; it proved a challenge to rig such a large shooting space with both cabled and wireless camera systems whilst the venue was still open to the public.

A student films the Children's choir rehearsing for BBC Look North.

BBC Election Special 2017

With another general election called in 2017, the BBC held this regional election special at the newly refurbished Square Chapel Arts Centre in Halifax. With major refurbishment still going on at the arts centre and Piece Hall next door, locations for the OB were tight. The OB truck was expanded with hired-in additional camera channels to create a 7 camera shoot with jib and autocue.

Students "booming" the audience for questions at the 2017 General Election special in Halifax.

BBC Look North - In or Out: An EU Referendum Special

Recorded at the Alhambra Studio theatre in Bradford, this "Question Time" style debate featured both sides of the Brexit argument, with three people in favour of remaining in the EU, and three people supporting the leave campaign. The hilly nature of the city and a convoluted cabling route made for a complicated rig, with long run distances from the truck to the venue requiring specialist fibre links to span the distance. Thanks to the quality of the output we could provide, our debate was selected to be broadcast on the BBC One nationwide HD channel, as well as BBC One Yorkshire.

Harry Gration, presiding over the Brexit debate in 2016.

Yorkshire Games Festival 2016

For the inaugural Yorkshire Games Festival at the National Media Museum, we provided a full outside broadcast with live stream of the events to YouTube. This involved three full days of seminars and interactive talks from the Pictureville cinema including integrating live games feeds and Skype sessions for participants in other countries.

Univeristy's motion capture kit

Capturing movement for computer games with our Vicon Motion capture suite.

Green Party Spring Conference

We provided a large flayaway kit for web streaming of the Green Party's 2016 Spring Conference at the International Conference Centre in Harrogate. As well as the live mix for three days, we provided the streaming technology for the event, alongside filming and editing of breakout sessions taking place simultaneously.

Live coverage of the Green Party leader's speech.

Children in Need 2015

Broadcast live to BBC One in the Yorkshire region from Bradford City Hall, this outside broadcast featured the complexity of rigging cameras, sound and talkback to three separate filming locations. These included a choir performing on the magnificent marble staircase in the heart of City Hall, a pop band performing in a meeting room, and Bhangra dancing in the banqueting suite.

Atudent with television camera working in BBC Children in Need live broadcast

James Hepple - Film & Television Production BSc student operating one of the cameras.

BBC Music Day 2015

In 2015 we provided a simulcast of the inaugural BBC Music day from Bradford City park onto both BBC Radio Leeds and a web video broadcast onto YouTube using our outside broadcast truck. Johnny I'Anson's radio show was broadcast from a café adjacent the mirror pool in city park, it live band sessions taking place inside the café, and events on a large stage outside. We later provided our live camera feed into BBC Look North's main evening news.

Broadcast live from the city centre of Bradford.

BBC Election Special 2015

Taking place at the newly opened Leeds Arena, this pre-recorded election special hosted by Harry Gration featured six political candidates from across the breadth of parties standing for election. Half crewed by students alongside BBC staff, this was our first prime time outside broadcast for the BBC. The programme was filmed at teatime, with the footage rushed back to base to be "topped and tailed" for broadcast after the main evening news.

A black box studio was created in the middle of the arena to use as the studio.

Great Central Railway Steam Gala

As a former mainline railway, the Great Central from London to Manchester featured long straits and double track, perfect for filming! We were invited to film their Autumn steam gala in 2014. With the benefit of a multi-camera setup, we were able to tell the story of trains passing at speed up and down the line through Quorn station including operation of pickup and drop off of the mail train. The footage was edited to a feature-length DVD, and sold in aid of a bridge construction appeal. Coupled with an earlier steam gala filmed at nearby Swithland the previous year, these DVDs have raised over £15,000 for the charity.

Television Production student Harvey, filming steam trains in inclement weather

TV student Harvey, filming in rather inclement weather!

West Yorkshire Playhouse - Live Theatre "Beryl"

Maxine Peake's critically acclaimed play "Beryl" was premiered at the West Yorkshire playhouse in June 2014, to coincide with the Tour de France's visit to Yorkshire. It tells the story of one of the greatest female cyclists - Beryl Burton from West Yorkshire, who dominated Women's cycling in the 1960s. We were invited to provide a live internet stream of the play for theatres around the country to show managers how they play was performed before a national tour. 

Samantha Power as Beryl Burton.