The Year the Town Hall Shrank

Series 1 - 2. Power

Radio Times
Review by:
Jack Seale

It’s spring 2011 and, as the cuts kick in, Stoke’s politicians aren’t concentrating on their effects. They’re on the campaign trail. We watch the BNP as they try to capitalise on disaffection. This brilliant series offers an unusually nuanced view of the nationalist politicians – particularly Mickey, a naive man who is their local activist of the year but who seems bewildered when their demos are interrupted by shouts of “Nazi scum!”

Meanwhile, Heathside care home is closing and the residents must move to private facilities, an upheaval that the staff fear could kill them. Council leader Mohammed Pervez, who hopes to gain full control for Labour this time, nervously explains the “need to provide choice”.

About this programme

2/3. The city's residents begin to feel the true extent of the 700 job losses and £36million in spending cuts approved by the council, including the closure of swimming pools, public toilets, libraries and the city farm, but with the local elections looming, politicians have to face up to the consequences of their decisions. The news arrives that a care home is being closed and its vulnerable patients evicted, making the employees worried about their futures.

Cast and crew

Crew

Director
David Nath
Director
James Newton
Producer
David Nath