Owner of Calverley newsagents which was transformed for BBC drama The Syndicate thanks community

The owner of a newsagents which was transformed for hit BBC drama The Syndicate said he hoped the filming had given the Calverley community "a boost".

Saturday, 15th May 2021, 6:00 am

Calverley News was taken over by owner Nilesh Chhaganlal Mistry 48, in 2018 with his wife Preeti, son Jai and daughter Ujjaini.

Since then, it has become a community hub in the area, providing locally sourced products.

Nilesh, speaking to the Yorkshire Evening Post, said he was amazed to be approached by a location scout for major BBC drama The Syndicate in the summer of 2020.

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Calverley News was taken over by owner Nilesh Chhaganlal Mistry, 48, in 2018

The fourth series of The Syndicate – written by Kay Mellor, who previously created dramas Band Of Gold, Fat Friends and In The Club – was a six-part “cat-and-mouse” thriller, set between Yorkshire and Monaco.

Believing it would be a 'fantastic' opportunity for his shop and customers, Nilesh agreed for the premises to be a potential location to feature in the series.

Much to his delight, Kay Mellor and her crew visited the shop to look at the sustainability for filming.

Just weeks later, Nilesh was called and told the shop had been chosen to feature in the drama.

Nilesh said he was amazed to be approached by a location scout for the major BBC drama

The show has been on air for the past few months - with many Calverley residents tuning in to try and spot the shop featuring.

Nilesh told the YEP filming had been an "experience" for the shop and community to be involved with.

He said many Leeds residents had recognised the shop following the BBC drama.

Nilesh even said people had taken selfies outside his shop - much to his delight.

He added: "The Syndicate has finally come to an end.

"It was a real experience for us and the community to be part of.

"We have had many people come and recognise the shop.

"Some have asked questions and even taken pictures outside.

"At least it got the community talking again about something other than Covid."

Despite the success of the stars of the series, Nilesh said his lottery sales had not rocketed.

Nilesh had to take the difficult decision to close his shop during the filming process.

But he believed the feature would be a huge occasion for the community, who have been "buzzing" to see the finished production.

Nilesh added: "Closing the shop for the two weeks was a massive decision as it was my livelihood, but on the grand scheme an easy one to make.

"It gave a release to the locals and something else to think about.

"I guess everyone's a winner."

Nilesh hoped the filming had boosted the spirits of Calverley residents.

He added: "I am hoping it has given people a boost.

"It was exciting to see the shop on mainstream TV as an integral part of a successful program.

"The good thing about Kay Mellor's programs is that she supports local.

"It has been a privilege to be part of and I want to say a big thank you to everyone that supported it."