Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Police Could Act If TV Show Reveals Criminal Activity

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Police Could Act If TV Show Reveals Criminal Activity

Article excerpt

Byline: James Cain Reporter

A CONTROVERSIAL TV show set in Stockton sparked a mixed reaction after its premiere was shown.

Benefits Street, set in Kingston Road, Tilery, was aired on Monday, claiming to highlight what life is like living on the state.

And, as police revealed they are looking at the footage of the show to see if it would assist in criminal investigations, Stockton residents gave their views of their town's moment in the spotlight.

Gillian Beckwith, a 53-year-old business owner from Grangefield, Stockton, said: "I was disappointed.

"It didn't give a true reflection or cross section of people who claim benefits.

"They've focused on the lazy drunks.

"Those people don't want to work - that's not the whole story.

"There are legitimate people who are on bene-fits. They've edited it to conform to the previous series.

She said: "There were some good parts though like the lady with her disabled son."

Laura Archer, a 28-yearold dental nurse from Hardwick, Stockton, said: "It was a disgrace. They do seem to have focused on the worst. The way they filmed that lad with the drugs. They made it look like it's all right to do that as long as it's in your home."

Louise Anderson, a 24-year-old office assistant from Portrack, Stockton, said: "It was a bit of a showing up for the area but I was expecting it to be really bad.

"To be honest it was definitely true to life. They were focusing on the residents of Tilery, that's what it's like."

Pamela Anderson, a 59-year-old company director from Portrack, Stockton, said: "I thought it was OK. I used to live in Tilery years ago. I was brought up there, went to school there - everything.

"I know a lot of the faces. At the end of the day, if they didn't want to be filmed they shouldn't have gone into it with the TV company.

"One thing though, they shouldn't have been allowed to film that man with the drugs."

The show attracted 2.95 million viewers which was 75% above the slot average, but down on the 4.3 million viewers who saw the opening episode of the first series last year. …

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