MIDNIGHT races in stolen cars provided Malvern playwright Kate Dean with the theme for a television film.

The S Bends, shown on Central Television as part of the First Cuts series by new directors, had a cast drawn from St Basil's project for the homeless in Birmingham.

The 10-minute film, screened last Friday (November 3), showed a young teenage runaway lured into a midnight car race, with tragic consequences.

"It was a project I did for Maverick TV in Birmingham and it was just about the fastest I have ever worked on," said Ms Dean, an award-winning playwright. "We had a three-day workshop with kids who had experienced homelessness, about 10 of them, aged from 17 to 25.

"They chose the subject and they all wanted to play hard men. Apparently, they really do race around the streets of Digbeth at 1am in stolen cars. Even if they hadn't done it themselves, they would know someone who had."

Ms Dean then had two weeks to write a script and find someone with a Subaru - their chosen car.

Malvern's Chris Gordon provided both the car and the stunt driving, which was filmed on a car park at 4am.

Ms Dean, who watched some of the filming, said: "These kids were lovely. A couple had been in prison for stealing cars but they have been saved from the streets and have made good. Some of them have jobs now."

The film, shot during the summer and premiered at the Midland Arts Centre in Birmingham last month, was directed by Francois Gondolfi, one of the winners of Carlton Television's First Cut competition.