Blog Article | 23 September 2016

Hollyoaks produce sexual consent documentary

Info via

Hollyoaks have produced a short film – “Hollyoaks: What is consent?” following the broadcast of a special consent Hollyoaks episode.

The special single-strand consent episode is set across 24 hours during Freshers Week.

The consequent documentary features two groups of young male and female students, in both mixed and single sex groups, discussing ideas around sexual consent after being presented with a written case study. It will also feature actors from the show Sophie Porley and Ben Ryan, who will present the film.


Hollyoaks writers have been working closely with Rape Crisis and The Mix, who offer support to under 25s.

Executive Producer Bryan Kirkwood said: “We are delighted to have been given the opportunity to start a discussion about sexual consent on this platform.

“At Hollyoaks we never want to lecture our audience- it is to encourage them to think and talk about decisions that affect them and others and ultimately look after one another.“

We at UK SAYS NOMORE are thrilled to see such an effort from Hollyoaks, in collaboration with Rape Crisis, to bring the issue of sexual consent to the forefront of young people’s minds in such an engaging way.

By bringing the issue into the storyline of such a massively viewed soap opera, largely aimed at those aged 16-24, it is hoped that discussions can be started and awareness grows around what consent is and about the meaning of a healthy relationship.

19.1% of women and 2.7% of men reported having experienced sexual assault (including attempts) since the age of 16 (ONS 2014).

Since the episode aired on E4, and consequently on Channel 4, there has been much discussion online, with divided opinions about the episode’s storyline.



Without education, many young people can find themselves unaware of the meaning of consent when it comes to their own personal sexual experiences. There may be a misconception of consent having a “grey area”, especially when it comes to the often alcohol fuelled university experience of Freshers Week.

By giving young people clear education on sexual consent and by looking at case studies as Hollyoaks’ documentary does, it offers a space for these issues to be explored and for young people to feel more able to both discuss sexual consent amongst friends, and feel confident about the idea of consent in their own present or future experiences.

We also hope that in raising awareness of consent, the frequent victim blaming can be shifted away from survivors of sexual assault, as it sadly often is wrongly pointed. Through documentaries such as Hollyoaks’, education in schools and a united effort to bring attention to these issues, we hope that young people feel confident in identifying their own role in ensuring every sexual experience is accompanied by consent. There are NO grey areas.

Let’s end the silence around sexual assault, rape and consent.

The film, “Hollyoaks: What is consent? is available to watch on All4.

What is sexual consent?

Everyone has the right to say ‘no’ to sex, to withdraw or withhold their consent for any sexual act, on any occasion and under any circumstances, regardless of whether they’ve given consent to sex with that person in the past and regardless of whether they’re in a relationship with the other person. Sex without consent is rape. Learn more about sexual consent.

Do you need help?

Bright Sky mobile app

Find your nearest domestic abuse support service using the Bright Sky app. Bright Sky is available on iOS and Android devices.

Rape Crisis helpline England and Wales

0808 802 9999 |

Rape Crisis Scotland

08088 01 03 02 |

The Rowan Sexual Assault Referral Centre for Northern Ireland

0800 389 4424 |

Survivors UK: (for adult male survivors of rape or sexual assault)

Web chat / Send a text to 020 3322 1860 |

If you are concerned about yourself or someone you know, visit the Get Help page for an extended list of UK helplines and services.

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