Dominic Treadwell-Collins is standing down as EastEnders‘ Executive Producer after two and a half years. He will be succeeded in the role by The Archers Editor Sean O’Connor.
Dominic has a long association with EastEnders, initially joining as senior story editor in October 2005, before becoming story producer the following year. He created the characters of Ronnie and Roxy Mitchell and Shirley Carter and played an integral role in plotting the soap’s 25th anniversary which saw 15.6 million viewers tune in to find out who killed Archie Mitchell. Other plots he was responsible for include Muslim character Syed Masood’s struggle to reconcile his faith and sexuality, Whitney’s sexual abuse, Stacey and Max’s affair, Ronnie’s secret daughter and Stacey’s bipolar disorder.
He departed EastEnders in 2010 and went on to launch production company Lovely Day (a sister company of Kudos) alongside former EastEnders Executive Producer Diederick Santer. As Head of Development he developed the series Grantchester to greenlight before re-joining EastEnders in August 2013 as Executive Producer.
During his second stint behind the scenes, Dominic has been responsible for a number of bold storylines including ‘Who Killed Lucy Beale’, the hugely successful Live Week to mark EastEnders‘ 30th anniversary, the introduction of the popular Carter family and the return of fan favourites including Lacey Turner as Stacey Branning and Gillian Taylforth as Kathy Beale. His success has been reflected in a series of award wins including Best Soap at the National Television Awards two years running and eight awards at the British Soap Awards 2015.
“My love for EastEnders is no secret and so the decision to leave Walford has not been one I have taken lightly. When I commit to something, I always give it my all – and after two and a half years of giving my blood to Walford, it is time for me to move on to other things – and keep EastEnders creatively refreshed, something that it has to do to stay at the top of its game. I made the decision to leave back in the summer but decided to stay longer for two reasons.
“Firstly, to oversee Peggy’s last episodes, which will air in May. When Dame Barbara comes to you to produce her final episodes, you cannot say no. I left EastEnders with Peggy last time when she burnt down her Vic and it feels fitting that we will now leave permanently together. Secondly, I needed to find the right person to take over from me. This is an incredible all-consuming show and in Sean, I know that we have found someone who already has Albert Square in his bones and who adores EastEnders as much as I do.
“It’s going to be gut-wrenching to tear myself away from everyone at EastEnders. It’s an utterly unique place to work, with everyone working so hard and with such passion – and I am so so proud to have led that brilliant team over the past couple of years. I know that EastEnders will continue to thrive under Sean and I’m looking forward to watching the show as a viewer again.” – Dominic Treadwell-Collins
Sean O’Connor has a prior association with EastEnders as producer, director and story producer and last worked on the programme eleven years ago. He story-lined the award winning Kat and Zoe Slater story, the domestic violence storyline between Little Mo and Trevor as well as the courtship of Dot Cotton and Jim Branning. Sean has been The Archers‘ Editor since September 2013 overseeing a raft of compelling storylines. He was previously a producer on the Radio 4 transmitted serial between 1999 and 2001,
“Dominic hands over EastEnders in robust health. It’s a testament to his endless commitment, infectious enthusiasm and rich imagination that the programme remains BBC1’s flagship drama. I’m thrilled to be back in Walford and particularly delighted to work once more with many dear friends and colleagues both backstage and on screen. I loved my time working at EastEnders previously; there’s nothing quite as challenging nor as rewarding. So I feel very honoured to be asked back to lead the wonderful cast, crew and production team at Elstree.
“At the same time, it is a real wrench for me to leave Ambridge. The Archers is an extraordinary programme – a jewel at the heart of the BBC and in the hearts of the British public. Working on it, with the extraordinary cast, writers and production team in Birmingham has been an absolute privilege. The Archers has been a part of my life for much of my life – and though I’ll be away from Borsetshire, I’ll continue to listen to the villagers of Ambridge, who feel to me – as they do for millions of listeners – like family.” – Sean O’Connor
The BBC’s Controller of TV Channels and iPlayer Charlotte Moore said of the development: “Dominic has done an extraordinary job. He has transformed EastEnders over the last few years and brought such flair, creativity and modernity to the show, not to mention an impressive array of awards. His passion and commitment to make everything the best it can be is inspiring and it’s testament to his great talents that he created a piece of television history with the 30th Anniversary, which broke records with over 20 million people watching across the week. EastEnders owes Dominic so much and we will miss him greatly. He is a creative force in television and I want to wish him all the very best in his next role. I would like to take this opportunity to welcome Sean O’Connor who I’m very excited to start working with.”