Penny Woolcock's compelling documentary uses footage shot during the summer riots, interviews and hip-hop performances to weave together the fascinating story of two opposing gang members' struggles to call a truce.

Following on from her hip-hop musical, One Day, Woolcock revisits protagonist, Dylan Duffus, as his real life self. Dylan and Shabba, members of rival Birmingham gangs, are catalysed by the filmmaker's presence to attempt, against the odds, to change gang culture from the inside out.

Set in inner city Birmingham where post-code rivalry is rife and gun crime is an everyday occurrence One Mile Away tells the human side of gang violence.

What the audience said

'Really important doc. Giving people a voice and opportunity who need it most but experience it the least'

'I really liked the documentary it gave a lot of insight. I am studying social work and will take a lot of knowledge from this film.'

'Great film, Penny is amazing!'

'It's a really important film that hopefully will reach the audience that it deserves'


'Excellent doc, well represented'

'Great and inspiring event, thanks!'

'Good drive, passion and endurance! Well done!'

'Great, valuable work. Thank you'


For a list of future screenings, visit the One Mile Away website HERE.


The work that Shabba, Dylan and director Penny Woolcock started didn't stop with the finished film. A group of men from both the Burgers and the Johnsons have formed a social enterprise to take the message of the film into schools and to bring about change in areas around the country most affected by gang violence.

Its founders, Zimbo and YT, were both heavily involved in the gang life style but are now seeking another way to inspire their peers and the generation that follows them. They feel that the postcode wars are just a symptom of a larger social problem and the negative mentality of young people in their community. Their work will focus on engaging youth and gang members with the aim of stimulating a change in this mentality, which has held their communities in a state of destruction for the last twenty years.

Their work is supported by the Bertha Foundation, BRITDOC and a generous group of individuals who recognise how important it is for change to grow from the inside.

They are currently piloting their programme in schools around the country. To support their project, you can donate to the One Mile Away Kickstarter campaign for distribution and impact. The #RoadToFreedom Tour will start on the 15th April and carry on until the autumn. They plan to visit as many schools, youth centres and young offenders institutes as they can, to directly speak to the people who need to hear the message of the film.