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Keeping you safe

How are we adapting delivery of BFI Film Academy in the context of COVID?

BFI Film Academy Bristol will begin in January 2022 and we will continually review how we deliver the programme in light of latest government guidance on COVID – 19. The delivery of the Academy may be subject to change depending on this guidance. At present we are planning on delivering in-person at Watershed  in small production teams with some online delivery, but we may need to switch to full online delivery or reduce team numbers.

At present we have in place the following procedures:

  • Watershed, which hosts the documentary course, is a Visit Britain accredited Covid-19 secure venue.
  • The buildings are deep cleaned every morning and afternoon, and high touch surfaces are cleaned regularly by staff in PPE.
  • Sanitiser stations have been placed in key areas around the building, there is extra sanitiser gel on request.
  • All equipment and work stations used on the course (laptops, cameras and desks) will be fully cleaned between different people using them.
  • You will access the building through a separate door (rather than the main entrance) and arrivals will be staggered to avoid too many people congregating at the entrance.
  • Once in the building you will maintain social distancing by following our one-way systems and safe distancing markers and signage.

We normally deliver the BFI Film Academy in a group of 21. To ensure social distancing guidelines are met we currently envisage we will be delivering the majority of the course in smaller groups.

You will need to wear a face covering whilst in the cinemas and moving around the buildings, in accordance with Government guidelines. When you are working in your small bubbles you will not need to wear a face covering (though you may opt too) but there will be enough space for you to maintain social distance. The spaces will be clearly marked to help with this.

All external speakers will join the sessions via Zoom rather than physically coming into the space.

We normally provide communal snacks for the sessions and shoot days. In order to avoid contamination, we will provide individually packaged snacks.

When out on shoot days (planned for February 2022) we will adhere to the latest Guidance from BFI for the film industry.

If you show any of the symptoms of Covid-19 (high temperature, continuous cough, loss of taste or smell) OR have been in contact with anyone with these symptoms we ask that you DO NOT attend the programme for at least 10 days after the last day of symptoms.

If you are unable to attend the sessions because you are shielding, quarantining or are in a vulnerable group – we will endeavour to include you in the programme over Zoom. This way of working is new to us so we may need to experiment and be flexible about how we do this. Please let us know when you apply if you think you may be unable to attend the course in person.

Support from your mentors to achieve your qualification, may be delivered online over zoom in small groups, rather than in-person to reduce the amount of physical contact time. If accessing the internet at home is not available to you, please let us know when you apply to the course and we can look at how best to support you.

If you are unable to use public transport to attend the physical sessions, because you or your family are in a vulnerable group, and a taxi are prohibitively expensive to you, we can look at providing travel bursaries for taxis. Please let us know on accepting the place if this is the case.

We have undertaken a covid-19 risk assessment, which is available on request.

Please note: Programme delivery will be subject to change to ensure we continue to meet government guidance.

NHS Test & Trace

In order to help reduce the risk of a local outbreak of Covid-19, we are taking contact details from all participants, mentors and speakers on the BFI Film Academy course. In line with guidance issued by the Department for Health and Social Care, we will keep your details for the duration of the course. We will share them with Test and Trace personnel, if asked, in the event of a fellow participants, mentor or speaker testing positive for coronavirus.

If you would like to opt-out of test and trace, please contact

Watershed’s privacy policy has been updated accordingly to include further information about Test & Trace.