Brief Encounters: ITV to make ‘gutsy’ drama series about Ann Summers’ infamous parties

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Hayley Kadrou

ITV have announced that a drama about the high-street retailer Ann Summers is in the making, and naturally it’s called Brief Encounters.

The six-part series will be set in the 1980s, and will focus on the lives of four women Steph, Pauline, Nita and Dawn who suddenly become entrepreneurs after getting involved in the sex toy company's Party Plan.

The show will be loosely adapted around the memoirs of the company founder, Jacqueline Gold, who published Good Vibrations in 1995. Gold joined the company in 1981, after being appointed by her father, who bought the company off the founder ten years previous.

She introduced the hugely successful Party Plan to the firm, having spotted an opportunity for Ann Summers to specialize in female only parties that would allow women to browse and shop for sexy lingerie and sex toys from home. 

The private parties are still a popular sales method for Ann Summers today: each week, over 2,500 parties are held by over 5,000 dedicated ambassadors across the UK.

Jacqueline Gold

Jacqueline Gold

By 1987, Gold became CEO of Ann Summers, and was credited with helping transform the image of the brand from a shady sex shop with a largely male customer base, to a visible high street retailer where women mostly feel comfortable and confident shopping at. Her net worth today is over £500 million. 

Executive producer of Brief Encounters, Arabella McGuigan, described the upcoming series as "gutsy, emotional, warm and surprising."

She says:

“Like the real Ann Summers saleswomen, through their camaraderie our women discover hidden strengths and an ability to come out fighting no matter what life throws at you. As wives, mothers and businesswomen they unleash talent and ambition - and they blossom.”

The show is set to be aired in February 2016.


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Hayley Kadrou

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