Frances Byrnes



Frances Byrnes writes dramas and produces and presents features for BBC Radio 3 and Radio 4. Her adaptations range from L.P Hartley’s The Go-Between (short-listed as the Writers’ Guild Best Radio Drama 2013) and Maupassant’s Bel-Ami to the cowboy epic Shane; all told from unexpected points of view. Her afternoon dramas are memoir-like; her documentaries play with form.

Frances makes features for BBC Radio 3, 4 and World Service. She loves making radio with dancers: a South African dancer transporting a dance floor home from London, American Martha Graham dancers on performing in Saigon, just before the city fell in ’74; torture survivors in Dublin dancing about horrors they can’t find words for. She presents these dance stories on air and writes them for national media. She’s won several Sony Awards for her productions, including Agon (a ballet for radio) and a musical documentary about Izal disinfectant (presented by songwriter, Sally Goldsmith). Frances was short-listed for a Best New Director BAFTA for The Pavlov Ballet. Working with writers — such as the novelist, John McGahern and the film-maker Penny Woolcock — has inspired her. With Penny she made The I Love You Bridge, a quest to find the lovers behind a graffiti marriage proposal at Park Hill in Sheffield.

She is a Sheffielder. As RLF Fellow at the University of Sheffield she was entranced by Animal and Plant Sciences. As an Advisory Fellow, she welcomes new fellows in the North, where she enjoys recording fellows for the RLF podcast, Writers Aloud.

More from Frances Byrnes


Frances Byrnes



[email protected]


  • University of Manchester, 2022–2023
  • University of Sheffield, 2021–2022
  • University of Sheffield, 2012–2015