Channel 4 is on the look-out for writing talent from the North of England, with an open submission process for writers who are new to television. Three aspiring writers will be selected to work with independent production companies Lime Pictures and Bonfide Films on exclusive mentoring and developmental schemes.

The broadcaster has teamed up with writing development agency New Writing North and Northumbria University to offer the opportunities as part of the Northern Writers’ Awards, which are open to entry until 2 February 2017.

Judges of the Channel 4/Northumbria University Writing for Television Awards are looking for northern writers and entries are particularly encouraged from writers who are currently under-represented in the industry, including Black, Asian and minority ethnic, LGBT+ and disabled writers.

The three winning writers will each receive bursaries of £3,000 to support their time at Lime Pictures or Bonafide Films and a bespoke 9-month package of training and development from staff at the independent production companies.

Two writers will work on Lime Pictures’ award-winning serial Hollyoaks. There they will shadow the process of script development, from first draft to broadcast script. At the end of the development period they may have the opportunity to undertake a paid commission for an episode of the serial drama.

The third writer will spend 9 months being mentored by a producer at Bonafide Films, which is currently producing The Last Post, written by BAFTA winner Peter Moffat, for BBC One. The writer will develop a new idea for a television drama and at the end of the process their first episode may be commissioned.

The Northern Writers’ Awards are the annual writing development programme run by New Writing North, which has supported more than 200 writers since 2000. The first recipients of the Channel 4/Northumbria University Writing for Television Awards were announced in June 2015. Both winners, Sharma Walfall and Nuzhat Ali, have recently been commissioned by Lime Pictures and RED Production Company, where they spent their placements.

Writers based in the North of England have until Thursday 2 February 2017 to enter the awards. Entrants should be new to television writing, but may be published in another form. Enter online at www.northernwritersawards.com