First-look pictures have been released for BBC Three’s upcoming comedy drama Boarders, filmed earlier this year at The Bottle Yard Studios and on location in Bristol, assisted by Bristol Film Office.

The brand-new six-part series, created by award winning writer Daniel Lawrence Taylor (Timewasters), follows five talented under privileged black students from inner-city London as they gain scholarships at St. Gilberts, an elite boarding school. Made by Studio Lambert (The Nest, Three Girls), in association with All3Media International for the BBC, the series will air on BBC Three and BBC iPlayer in 2024.

Two of the first-look images of Boarders side-by-side. On the left, Femi (Aruna Jalloh) and Omar (Myles Kamwendo) sit beside each in other in school uniform with a chess board on the table in front of them. On the right, Bernard (Derek Riddell) sits at a desk and looks up at Carol (Niky Wardley).
L-R: Femi (Aruna Jalloh), Omar (Myles Kamwendo), Bernard (Derek Riddell), and Carol (Niky Wardley). Image: BBC/Studio Lambert

This selection of new pictures gives viewers their first glimpse of the cast including Josh Tedeku (Supacell, A Town Called Malice) as Jaheim, Jodie Campbell (Bulletproof, No Return) as Leah, Myles Kamwendo (The School for Good and Evil) as Omar alongside Sekou Diaby as Toby and Aruna Jalloh as Femi – both making their screen debuts. Derek Riddell (Happy Valley, Gentleman Jack) will play headmaster Bernard, and Niky Wardley (Queen of Oz, The Catherine Tate Show) will play Carol Watlington-Geese, Chair of the Board, and both also feature in the first- look images.

Gus (Daniel Lawrence Taylor) smiles kindly as he listens to Jaheim (Josh Tedeku)
L-R: Gus (Daniel Lawrence Taylor) and Jaheim (Josh Tedeku). Image: BBC/Studio Lambert

New pictures also include Boarders creator and writer Daniel Lawrence Taylor, who appears on screen to play Gus, a mentor figure to St Gilbert’s five newest students.

As previously announced, additional cast include Harry Gilby (Tolkien), Tallulah Greive (Our Ladies, Cinderella), Rosie Graham (The School for Good and Evil, Sanditon), Georgina Sadler (The A List) and Assa Kanoutè and Archie Fisher, making their screen debuts.

Boarders is a high energy, coming of age comedy drama. Following a problematic viral video involving a student, our leads are offered sixth form scholarships to St Gilbert’s, in an attempt to rehabilitate the image of one of the country’s oldest and most prestigious schools. They soon find themselves in a world they can only describe as something out of Harry Potter, surrounded by lush playing fields, cloistered grandeur and complex social rules which they must decipher quickly in order to survive. They will go on a journey as they learn about themselves, their identity and what it’s like to live alongside the one percent – which they discover is nothing like life as they knew it.

Boarders (6×45′) was created by Daniel Lawrence Taylor, who serves as lead writer and was joined in the writing room by Emma Dennis-Edwards, Yemi Oyefuwa and Ryan Calais Cameron. The series is directed by Ethosheia Hylton (African Queens, Sanditon) and Sarmad Masud,(You Don’t Know Me, Bulletproof) with Alison MacPhail (Uncle, Nighty Night) serving as producer and Carleen Beadle-Larcombe as line producer. Executive producers are Daniel Lawrence Taylor, and Madeleine Sinclair and Susan Hogg for Studio Lambert, and Nawfal Faizullah and Ayela Butt for the BBC. The Musical Director for the series is Mykaell Riley – writer, producer and founding member of the British roots Reggae band Steel Pulse and Britain’s first black pop orchestra, The Reggae Philharmonic Orchestra.

Boarders will air on BBC Three and BBC iPlayer in 2024.