Alan Whitehead

Labour MP for Southampton Test

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'Immigration Street' - proposed television series in Derby Road

It has come to my attention that the television company, Love Productions, are looking to film a series of programmes on Derby Road. 

The company was responsible for making the Channel Four series 'Benefits Street' which was filmed in Balsall Heath, Birmingham, around James Turner Street. Both the content of this series and the way it was filmed were controversial at the time, and a number of residents found their lives considerably affected by the film and its aftermath.

I understand that the company have suggested that the new series could be called 'Immigration Street' and would consist of a number of programmes about life in and around Derby Road. It would perhaps concentrate, as the 'Benefits Street' programmes did, on eight or so main 'characters' in the area. The company want to film during the late spring and summer and show the programmes on Channel Four next year.

As your local MP, I am very concerned about the proposal and its possible effects on the residents of Derby Road, especially in the light of what happened with the company's filming in Birmingham. Whilst I believe that there should be a proper debate around the issue of immigration, I am concerned that this series will not accurately portray the Derby Road community. Some programmes can be very effective in getting across to the public what the real issues are. 

I have written to residents of Derby Road to find out their opinions on the proposed filming. If you'd like to get in touch with your own views on the subject, please email 

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