Maggie Coombes recalls how she came to be employed by Granada TV

 I’d done a postgraduate course at Bristol University in film and television, and I just wrote round to all the television companies I could think of, this is who I am, I’ve done this postgraduate course, I’ve been at art college for four years before that, I’ve done a three-dimensional design course, I’d like to be a set designer, have you got any jobs? Most of them wrote back and said no, I think I had one for Thames and they said ‘thanks but no thanks’, and then I had a letter from Granada saying come for an interview. So I borrowed somebody’s suit, a friend from Bristol, and got the train up, and was interviewed by two very senior designers, who were lovely, they looked at my folio, really liked the fact that I knew something about programme making, having done this postgraduate course, and then Bob Connell, who I think was the what do you call it… Personnel… and that was a bit weird, because he asked me all sorts of questions, and one of the main things he seemed to be worried about was who would look after my parents if they were ill, which I thought was an odd question, but I thought he probably asked me that because I was a woman, so I said I had other siblings who still lived in the south, and I felt between us all we’d manage, but my parents weren’t old then, so it wasn’t a problem. So that was it – they took me on, on a three months contract as a trainee assistant designer for three months and they said, “We’ll see how it goes,” and I think that’s how it started. I started on November 5 (1974), which was a good day to start, I thought.



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