#Skint – episode 1

If you are a regular reader and you visit my blog regularly, or you are one of my friends, you may have seen my personal profile, just over there somewhere >>>> You may notice it says I am from Scunthorpe. The town on which the new mini series airing on Channel 4, ‘Skint’, is based. Not only am I from that town, I’m also from the estate that the majority of it was filmed on. So basically, I was both excited to watch it, and dreading it, as from the previews I had a horrible feeling about how it was going to be portrayed. And it seems I was correct. 

When I first found out that the show was going to be aired, it made me think back to last year, just before little man was due to arrive, and a letter we got through our door. It was from a production company for C4, saying they were filming on our estate and would love to hear from people from all walks of life. At the time I uploaded a photo to Facebook, and a few people were egging me on to apply – I am so glad I didn’t now, what a waste of my time that would have been! They wouldn’t have shown stories like ours, ‘boring’ ones, and I know this because a few people have said they or their family were filmed for various (good) reasons, and it’s not going to be aired. Of course not. Only the parts showing the estate to be full of what everybody is now referring to ‘scum’ will be aired, as that’s what brings the ratings in. 

So which ‘landmarks’ did I recognise? All of them. ‘The wall’ and the precinct is literally 5 minutes (or less) walk from where I live. One of the streets shown (where they were sat on the sofas outside in the courtyard) is the close in which I used to live! 

How many people did I recognise in just this first episode? Three! 

Did this episode show a fair representation of life on the estate? In part, it did. It showed a fair representation of the ‘scum’ people (I say ‘scum’ like this, as like I said, this is what many people are referring to them as now), as I can testify that this kind of behaviour really does happen around here. I’ve seen it happen many a time, especially with our old neighbours. But what it didn’t show was the better part of life on the estate, the hard working, polite people. Again, no they wouldn’t, because it wouldn’t bring in as many ratings. I suspect in future episodes they won’t show the community atmosphere from the Olympic torch relay which took place when they were filming, or the community fun day organised by the local housing association which also took place. Or the young children they filmed in a ballet show. No, because once again, ratings and publicity are more important. And as this article says, they simply wished to fuel the whole unemployed and benefits saga. 

As has been said in many conversations which I have had since the programme aired last night, this is simply just one part of a country with this kind of estate. Go to any other town, and you could pretty much guarantee the same kind of thing there too. But, being from this town, and the way in which is has been portrayed on television, I am embarrassed, ashamed and mortified to say I live on this estate. 

Look out for another post from me after next week’s episode. 

6 thoughts on “#Skint – episode 1

  1. I didn't watch it I am afraid and having never been to scunthorpe before last Friday when we went out for lunch I was quite surprised when you said it was filmed on your estate. outwardly there are a lot worse looking estates nr me, yours looks quite nice tbh. I was quite impressed by the little bit I saw.

  2. I'm glad you wrote this. It made me review my initial thoughts about Scunthorpe. I saw the program for the first time and was shocked at what I saw

  3. There are people like this on every estate, and there are estates like this in every town/ city… For the most part, the people who live on these estates are good hard working people with family values who are 'struggling' to maintain a good life for themselves and their children.
    Having come from a very well to do military family, I moved onto a big house in Harrogate, drove 'posh' cars and my children had everything. Now (after my divorce) I live in a rented house on an estate which used to be owned by the mining association. We have 8 children and work our arses off to feed and clothe them. We have two cars, a motorbike and a 'little' social life 😉
    I was amazed at the attitude of some of the people featured on the programme, but unlike lots of people I have seen commenting on facebook and the like, I am intelligent enough to realise that this is 'television' and featuring people like me (or indeed you Stacey) is not what people consider to be entertaining. 😉

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