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Pinewood announces the submission of a new £200m planning application for the expansion of Pinewood Studios

1 February 2013

Pinewood Shepperton plc ("the Company"), a leading provider of services to the global film and television industry, announces that it will today be submitting a planning application to South Bucks District Council for the expansion of Pinewood Studios, called the Pinewood Studios Development Framework ("PSDF").  This follows extensive consultation with a wide range of local and national stakeholders, as well as with producers and developers of creative content.

The PSDF is a scheme of national importance designed to address increasing global demand for capacity in the UK and deliver growth for the next 15-20 years.  It comprises a substantial expansion of the existing Pinewood Studios by adding a total of 100,000 sq m of new facilities, including studios and stages, workshops, production offices and streetscapes for filming.  Once complete, this would make a major contribution to achieving Government priority objectives to grow the UK's creative industries, promote growth and create new jobs. 

The proposals will enable the Company to capture increasing international demand for studio facilities and respond to rising competition from outside the UK.  They will also cement Pinewood Studios' position as a world leading hub for the global creative industries. 

The PSDF is a significant private sector infrastructure investment in the UK, consistent with Government policy, and will, according to Amion Consulting, have a positive impact on the economy by:

  • providing £194m of private sector infrastructure investment 
  • supporting over 8,100 full time jobs
  • creating some 3,100 net additional jobs
  • producing an additional £149m in Gross Value Added (GVA)[i]
  • providing an additional contribution to the Exchequer of £36m per annum
  • generating an additional £37m per annum in UK exports

Ivan Dunleavy, Chief Executive, Pinewood Shepperton plc said:

“This is a critical opportunity for the creative industries and particularly for the UK film industry. Global demand for filmed entertainment is increasing and the UK remains one of the leading destinations to produce creative content. We have the talent and skills and the Government has expressed its commitment to the industry through the various tax reliefs now available. Without infrastructure to meet the rising demand, the UK will inevitably turn away business. Pinewood Studios, the UK film industry and UK plc cannot afford to allow this to happen.”

Danny Boyle (Artistic Director, 2012 London Olympic Opening Ceremony, Slumdog Millionaire, 127 Hours, Trainspotting, Sunshine) said:

"Many of the great British films which were showcased at the Olympic opening ceremony such as Oliver Twist, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Skyfall were produced at Pinewood.  If we are, as a country, to capitalise on our film heritage then we need state of the art facilities like those which Pinewood is proposing to both attract major Hollywood films and nurture and bring on the next generation of young independent British film makers".

Eric Fellner, Working Title (Les Misérables) said:

"Pinewood is one of the world’s most iconic studios and when we came to shoot Les Misérables, it was the obvious choice. We were the very first production on the massive, new Richard Attenborough Stage and we used it to full effect and built some amazing sets. We fully support Pinewood’s expansion plans as the UK needs more first class studio space to encourage the growth of the film and tv sector. It will also help maintain the UK’s leading position in the film industry”.

Ridley Scott (Prometheus, Blade Runner, Alien, Gladiator, Robin Hood) said:

“I have long been a supporter of Pinewood and Shepperton and believe that they offer some of the best facilities in the world. There is no doubt in my mind that the UK has to keep investing in new technology, skills and infrastructure to keep pace with international competition. The expansion at Pinewood is long overdue”.

Amanda Nevill, Chief Executive, British Film Institute said:

“Pinewood remains one of the key building blocks of the UK film industry and there are many other smaller companies working in the creative industries today that depend on the films it attracts for their own growth. The capacity of the studios in the UK to respond to opportunities is key to the on-going success of British film. In order to secure inward investment and help develop and nurture the next generation of home grown talent, the BFI supports Pinewood’s ambitions to expand and invest”.

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[i] Gross value added (GVA) is a measure in economics of the value of goods and services produced in an area, industry or sector of an economy. In national accounts GVA is output minus intermediate consumption; it is a balancing item of the national accounts' production account