BUDDING film makers and actors are being handed an opportunity to kick-start their careers in the Tyne Valley.

For the National Youth Film Academy, founded by Hexham man Rob Earnshaw a decade ago, was relocated to his home town early last year.

And speaking this week, 33-year-old Rob said it offered the ideal opportunity for people with talent to be discovered.

The academy has links to the industry's biggest names, and a recruitment drive has seen Duncan Kerr appointed as general manager, while Dan Charles is head of content, having previously worked with Odeon Cinema and the Disney Channel, respectively.

"I am always amazed by the high level of talented people in the Tyne Valley and across the North-East, said Rob

"But I still believe that a lot of people don't realise that we are here, right on the doorstep."

Despite the pandemic, Rob has taken on nine new members of staff from the region over the past 12 months, including a team of talent managers.

The academy wants to hear from those keen on embarking on a career as an actor, film maker, or in other professional roles within the industry, or even within the academy itself.

There are no initial fees, but those who identified as having the credentials to succeed can become members of the academy, and accessing its specialist resources both locally and further afield.

Rob, who attended Hexham’s Queen Elizabeth High School, previously helped casting directors find actors for films, before founding the film academy aged 24.

For more information about the National Youth Film Academy, and to get in touch, visit www.nyfa.org.uk.