Benefits Street Channel 4 9pm on Monday

So has your office or social media channel been talking about the new series which started last night on channel 4 called Benefits Street? It certainly raised a few eye brows here!!!!

Channel 4’s controversial documentary series Benefits Street launched last night. The five part series, which focuses on a Birmingham street that Channel 4 claims is one of the most dependent on benefits in the country, attracted 4.3 million viewers, a 17.2% share!

Filmed in the Winson Green area of Birmingham, the series aims to reveal the daily challenges faced by struggling families, such as poverty, illiteracy, and drug and alcohol problems.

Residents of the street have claimed to the Birmingham Mail they were tricked into appearing in the show, made by independent producer Love Productions.

They claim they took part after film-makers assured them that the series would be about community spirit.

But they said the show paints residents as anti-social benefit scroungers, irresponsible parents, drug-takers and foul-mouthed wasters.

A Channel 4 spokesman told the Birmingham Mail: “This is a fair and balanced observational documentary series. It is a fair reflection of the reality of life on a street where the majority of households receive benefits. The contributors were briefed extensively before any filming took place. If any residents requested not to be filmed they were not. The main contributors have been offered the opportunity to view the programmes they feature in before transmission to make any comments about their contributions. As far as we are aware we have appropriate consent for any private phone calls that appear in the series.”

So did you watch it? If so what did you think? We’d love to hear your opinion about the show and wonder if these record viewing figures will be repeated next week or if the nation will turn off in disgust following episode one? Let’s wait and see shall we!

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