Ruth opens the doors to Cocoa Black in a six-part BBC TV series, The River

In February 2016, the BBC enquired whether Cocoa Black would be willing to contribute to a forthcoming TV series called The River.  Filmed between April and September that year, The River would chart the daily lives of people living and working along the beautiful Tweed Valley in the Scottish Borders.

Series producer, Steven Todd and his film crew, Emma and Lyndsay, worked tirelessly behind the scenes at Cocoa Black. They followed Ruth and husband David in their daily lives as they tackled the challenge of growing their chocolate business alongside bringing up a young family.

In the early days, Steven often turned up at The Chocolate Factory under the pretence of needing additional footage. Coincidentally (or perhaps not), he usually arrived just as the production team had finished preparing the day’s chocolate, cakes and patisserie!

As filming progressed, Ruth and the team quickly became accustomed to the cameras rolling, often forgetting they were there. Ruth’s children, Aiden and Delphine, however, were much more aware of their surroundings, and behaved beautifully when in front of the camera. Alas, this quickly descended into the normal fracas when off-screen!

The production crew followed several storylines, including the preparation of patisseries for the chocolate  boutique, a surprise visit by Ruth’s parents from Tasmania, and the Royal Opening of The Chocolate & Pastry School by HRH Prince Edward.

Broadcast over six weeks starting in November 2016, and with regular repeats shown,  The River helped to raise awareness of Cocoa Black to a wide audience.

Filming at Cocoa Black was an absolute joy. The hard work made easy with an endless supply of chocolate delights!

Steven Todd
Series Producer, BBC The River