BBC Cymru Wales

Machynlleth is the setting for the second of BBC Cymru Wales’ political TV debates, on Monday (18 April). In Election 2011 – The Debates, a panel of politicians faces some tough questions from the programme’s audience.

Chaired by BBC Cymru Wales’ Political Editor Betsan Powys, Election 2011 – The Debates is broadcast at 10.35pm on BBC One Wales.

And as the big day approaches, BBC Cymru Wales also broadcasts the first of two special election editions of its Welsh language debate programme, Pawb a’i Farn, from St Asaph on Thursday 21 April. Chaired by Dewi Llwyd, it can be seen on S4C at 8.25pm.

The BBC Radio Wales Election 2011 Tour also continues, gathering opinions and providing a stage for people all over Wales to voice their concerns and views on election matters. On Tuesday 19 April, Good Morning Wales broadcasts from Barry Market, while the Radio Wales Phone-In is in Monmouth’s Shire Hall and Good Evening Wales at the Ebbw Vale Institute.

On Thursday 21 April, Good Morning Wales heads west to Swansea Indoor Market with Good Evening Wales broadcasting live from Porthcawl Pavilion.

Election 2011 – The Debates, Monday, April 18, BBC One Wales, 10.35pm

BBC Radio Wales Election 2011 Tour, Tuesday 19 April and Thursday 21 April

Pawb a’i Farn, Thursday 21 April, BBC Cymru Wales on S4C, 8.25pm

BBC Cymru Wales has appointed Faith Penhale as Head of Drama. Penhale joins from Kudos Film and Television where she is currently creative manager and executive producer.

When she takes up the role later this year, Penhale will take overall responsibility for the strategic direction of a very successful department, including in-house development strategy and relationships with key independent producers.

In her current role, Penhale is involved with supporting the creative foundations at Kudos as well as working as an executive producer on key drama projects. Through her track record of development and productions, Bridgend-born Penhale works closely with major writing and directing talent as well as nurturing emerging writers. Her production credits include award-winning dramas Spooks for BBC One and The Fixer for ITV1.

Piers Wenger, who joined BBC Wales in 2007 and, with Stephen Moffat and Beth Willis masterminded the latest regeneration of Doctor Who with Matt Smith, will continue in his role as creative leader of a range of key shows including the Doctor.

Wenger was responsible for the highly successful relaunch of Upstairs Downstairs as well as the extraordinary Eric And Ernie, which was the most successful drama on BBC Two for more than a decade. Having previously held the post as Head of Drama, he now wishes to focus more exclusively on the running of his existing slate of in-house shows as well as the creative development of individual projects, including Sir Tom Stoppard’s forthcoming five-part adaptation of the Ford Madox Ford novel Parade’s End for BBC Two.

Penhale joins at a time of huge growth for BBC Wales, with Casualty moving to Wales this autumn, joining Doctor Who, Pobol y Cwm and Upstairs Downstairs in the new Roath Lock drama production centre in Cardiff Bay, following BBC Wales’ impressive increase in network production over recent years. She joins an accomplished and highly talented team which also includes Bethan Jones (Merlin/Shine, Sherlock/Hartswood).

Clare Hudson, Head of English Language Programmes at BBC Cymru Wales, says: “We have been incredibly fortunate in BBC Wales to have such an impressive array of talent doing their best work with us over the past few years. I am really thrilled that Faith has agreed to lead BBC Wales drama into the next exciting era of its development; the Welsh creative sector as a whole will also benefit enormously from her skills and her vision.”

Ben Stephenson, Controller, BBC Drama Commissioning says: “Faith has fantastic creative energy and vision as well as great talent relationships so I am delighted she has agreed to go back to her roots in Wales. We have big plans for Wales drama – not only do we want to sustain its relationships with Welsh indies but we also want to build on the success of the in-house department to make it even more vibrant and exciting. I am confident that Faith will be a major player in delivering the ambition of BBC Drama by working with a range of writers on a variety of authentic and original authored drama.”

Faith Penhale says: “I am thrilled to be joining such an exciting department with a track record for producing some of the most stand-out dramas on British television. I hope my experience at Kudos will help take the department even further and build on its success.”

Piers Wenger says: “I am absolutely thrilled for Wales that it has someone as brilliant and experienced as Faith to bring in the next generation of shows. The department has blazed a trail across a wide portfolio of in-house and indie shows in the last few years and it’s exciting for us all to have someone with Faith’s huge talent to build on their success.”

Jane Featherstone at Kudos says: “We have loved working with Faith at Kudos and want to thank her for being such a brilliant member of the creative team for several years now. We know that she will make a huge success of her new role in Wales, and very much hope to be able to continue to work with her in that capacity.”

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