Shepperton Studios has submitted plans for the redevelopment and expansion of its site in Surrey.

A planning application has been lodged with Spelthorne Borough Council seeking consent for the £500 million private sector development project which will deliver an increase in stage space of around 465,000 sq ft and associated support facilities.  The development will bring the studio up to the scale and standard of its sister Pinewood Studios and make it a “truly world-class facility.”

Shepperton owner, Pinewood Group, says the expansion will secure the future of more than 1,500 direct jobs currently based in Spelthorne and maintain the current contribution to the local economy of £181 million Gross Value Added (GVA). It says that over the construction period 837 jobs per year will be created, including potential for more than 200 jobs in the borough and that on completion, Shepperton Studios is expected to boost productivity within the local economy to a total of £322 million (GVA) and will create and sustain a total of 2,796 jobs.

Andrew M. Smith, Director, Shepperton Studios said: “The UK is currently missing out on a significant number of international films because of a shortage of sound stages. The British Film Institute and British Film Commission have been calling for more stage space to reverse this trend and the increased capacity proposed at Shepperton Studios will meet head on the need for additional purpose built sound stages to accommodate blockbuster size movies”.

Adrian Wootton OBE, Chief Executive, British Film Commission and Film London said: “Inward investment from the production of major feature film and high-end TV drama reached record levels in the UK in 2017. International feature films spent £1.69bn in the UK – the highest figure since records began, and a 23% increase on 2016. However, the UK’s increased popularity as a filming destination means that a significant increase in studio capacity is now more essential than ever. Additional purpose-built studio space, together with an ongoing focus on skills development, is now crucial in order for us to continue to compete for major multi-million-dollar feature film and TV projects which have such a hugely positive impact on investment, employment, and tax revenue for both local economies and for UK plc”.

Shepperton Studios will work with Spelthorne Borough Council as it assesses and determines the planning application.

Jon Creamer

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