These are troubling times for newspaper groups, their teams and the much derided editors and editor-in-chiefs (or is that editors-in-chief?)

But the passion to thrive, provide fabulous insight and analysis and get the news out first is as raw and fundamental as it has ever been.

The BBC’s brilliant new documentary series about life behind the shimmer of steel and glass at The Herald and Times Group’s Renfield Street HQ showed that in all its gory glory.

As a former newspaper editor and editor-in-chief myself, I started off watching from behind the sofa expecting a brutal expose of the bad language and dark humour that stalk newsrooms while attempting a fresh attack on journalists as blood-sucking scum with no compassion for their subjects nor passion for their trade.

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What we got instead was a slow-burning and wonderful reportage of the vagaries of life inside the hard-pressed newsrooms of Scotland and beyond.

It’s timing was impeccable and offered a triumvirate of challenges that these committed journalists face: the shift from print to digital (when print still provides the largest part of their revenue), the issue of declining resources, and handling some of the biggest stories of the last 50-or-so years.

What the BBC managed to avoid, thankfully, was the cliched view of blood and thunder journalists prepared to be damned in return for the best scoop; that’s very rarely the case.

Here was a beautiful illustration of the frustrations of trying to cover some of the most difficult issues of our time against the clock and amid financial and technological pressures. These guys write the thing, do the digital content and then go and produce podcasts to boot – the vagaries of being a multi-media hack today.

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The old war horses Richard Walker and Donald Martin prowled the joined-up newsroom as the titles vied for the best line on that day’s Brexit balls-up and the chance to win the digital and circulation war; at least for one day.

Donald’s stoicism in the face of mounting management challenges was impressive and Richard’s foul language (ironically, not to be repeated in a family newspaper) just poetic. I know they must have cut far more out.

The star of the show was young blood Callum Baird who showed his Brexit balls by stiffing Theresa May when she locked The National out of a press conference.

The editor did his bit by refusing to cover the story and leaving the front page blank – something we’ve all wanted to do, but very few have  the chutzpah to do it. Callum and his crew offered a bright light for the future.

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The issues are clear, however; the challenges stark and the increasing pressures on people dedicated to their craft are more intense. As a consultant on reputation management, I understand why some may see it as brave to let the cameras roll, where the editing process is out of your hands.

However from a brand perspective it delivers clear positive messages about the team’s commitment to quality, and offers a cracking insight and engagement for readers and a potential new audience.

By showing it as it is rather than stage managing the presentation it has an engaging authenticity that underpins the value of trusted journalism.

It also revealed why there is no better place to be when a big story is breaking than in the heart of a buzzing, sweary, time-constrained and under-resourced newsroom. Ironically for TV, this series is going to be a cracker of a page-turner.

*Damian Bates is a former newspaper editor and editor-in-chief and is now a media and reputation management consultant, company chairman and author of a book on Donald Trump.