In 1997 Doreen Jones and Simone Reynolds met and talked about the possibility of a Guild. They were particularly anxious to address the problem of ‘bad practice’ by some casting directors (for example, the non-use of Equity agreements, actors being exploited, casting directors deliberately under-cutting each other, and various other problems which had come about since Margaret Thatcher had disbanded the unions – including the ACTT). This coincided with the Lottery being launched, and large sums of money being awarded to all kinds of individuals and companies, some of whom were simply using the funds to make ‘tax break’ fi lms for both TV and the cinema. Many of these fi lms never saw the light of day, or went straight to video. The problem of casting directors obtaining a proper credit on screen was rife and the BBC only reluctantly agreed to a credit of ‘Casting Adviser’. Casting directors, like Lynn Stalmaster, in the USA were getting single screen credits whilst Mary Selway (a top UK casting director) was struggling to get a credit at all. Hence the Guild was set up in 1997, after a year of planning and consultation undertaken by the original committee, with Simone Reynolds as Chair. The other members of the committee were Anne Henderson, Doreen Jones, Julia Duff, Audrey Helps and Paul De Freitas.