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MediaCityUK-based Toasted expands with Chester Zoo client win

Toasted Productions, one of the first businesses to make its home at MediaCityUK, is celebrating after expanding its Manchester operations and taking on an array of new clients, including Chester Zoo.

The media production company, (which also has an office in London), has taken an extra office within its premises in the Pie Factory at MediaCityUK – where it produces and develops content for a range of clients, including Chester Zoo and Pendleton TV.

Toasted is run by Simon Marsland and was established in 2001. It has been working closely with Chester Zoo for the past two years, producing online promotional and TV commercial content, including for the recently opened ‘Islands’ development. It also filmed time-lapse development of elements of the site, during construction.

Talking about Toasted’s recent expansion, Simon said: “When we arrived at MediaCityUK seven years ago, we were in a very different place to where we are now. The recession had kicked in and there was much more of a fight to find work. Now we find clients have much more confidence and are planning and looking forward, which means we can too. It has been an absolute delight to work with Chester Zoo on the Islands  project and we look forward to continuing our relationship with them”.

Simon added: “We love being part of MediaCityUK and can’t imagine being based anywhere else. MediaCityUK itself has transformed from a building site, with no available amenities, to a vibrant community where each day we encounter new people and events and have an abundance of places to grab a bite to eat or meet with clients.”

Anna Barker, Marketing Officer at Chester Zoo said: “Islands at Chester Zoo is the largest zoo development ever seen in the UK – recreating the amazing tropical environments of six South East Asian islands. It brings to life the experience of the habitats of South East Asia and showcases the vital conservation work Chester Zoo does in this part of the world. Toasted have helped us to bring Islands to life through engaging and educational film content – providing that build-up of anticipation prior to opening. The series of films they produced enabled us to communicate the storylines that were key to the overall visitor experience. This provided a real sense of the expedition they’d face when they arrived at Islands.”

Toasted has also launched the Pendleton TV YouTube channel with Pendleton Co-operative.
The digital channel is managed by Toasted and charts the on-going regeneration of Pendleton in Salford. Toasted produce and manage Pendleton TV’s social media and they have an up and coming campaign launching soon called ‘Bag It Up Pendleton’, which will feature a talking dog….!

Toasted is also developing and producing ongoing video and animated content for Manchester University entitled ‘Animated Urbanism’.

Gemma Luty, Property Asset Manager at Peel Media, said:  “Toasted joined us at MediaCityUK back in 2008, when the new city was still under construction and only a handful of companies were based here. Now Toasted are part of an ever-expanding community – home to upwards of 250 businesses and it’s wonderful to see how they’ve grown. They produce some fantastic work and have built a great rapport with many of the businesses here and we look forward to seeing what else they deliver over the coming years”.

Toasted is committed to finding and developing new talent and works very closely with students and graduates from FutureSkills and the University of Salford. They offer vocational training, nurturing new talent, offering full-time and freelance employment, along with work placements and opportunities with a view to gaining valuable experience in production and post-production.