Our Happy Valley Life (w/t)

Channel 5 today announces the commission of Our Happy Valley Life (W/T), a 2x60” ‘docu-sitcom’, produced by Story Films, and ordered by Commissioning Executive Denise Seneviratne.

Combining the intimacy of an observational documentary with the tone of a sitcom, Our Happy Valley Life (W/T) will create a unique type of series: rich in character, warmth and laughter.

Working closely, and collaboratively, with a close-knit, extended Welsh family from the heart of the Valleys, the show will focus on relatable everyday stories such as ‘Nana’s Coming to Stay’, ‘The Driving Test’, or ‘Meeting the In Laws’, finding the humour in the ordinariness of family life.

Familiar family situations, such as these, will be filmed like the dramatic arc of a classic sitcom.

Story Films produce documentary and drama and is run by BAFTA award-winning filmmakers David Nath and Peter Beard.

Nath said: “We’re really excited about trying to move the obs-doc on by taking some of the values of a sit-com, but the bottom line is it has to make you laugh.”

Executive Producer Sophie Jones, from South Wales, said: “I’ve spent a lot of time in the Valleys and it’s one of the few places where a strong sense of community still exists in Britain, the unique sense of humour is absolutely a part of that”

Denise Seneviratne, Commissioning Executive, Channel 5 said “This will be a real, often hilarious glimpse into family life in the valleys - made with authenticity and collaboration with our real-life cast. Sitcoms are a reflection of some of the everyday absurdities of family life- so flipping it and applying those beats to a real family is an exciting genre-crossing prospect. And the Valleys is really the only place to do it…’

Kiera Godfrey