09 Aug 2021 10:50 AM

‘Where on earth is Broxbourne?’ Born and bred in North London, I can tell you, it’s 17 miles north of Central London, close to the A1 and M25!

One of the world's largest Private Equity groups, Blackstone has linked up with Hudson Pacific Properties to back the building of a major studio at Broxbourne. They've acquired a 91 acre site for £120m where they’ll build a TV and film studio complex, expected to be bigger than Pinewood. The studios are estimated to create around 4,500 permanent jobs.

This joint venture is run through Hollywood's Sunset Studios, which runs four studios in USA and produced La La Land, Zoolander, and the first of the X-Men franchise. 

This major commitment to the British Film Industry corroborates the huge success of the industry. All the major UK studios are already at, or near, full capacity including, Bray, Leavesden, Pinewood, Shepperton and Twickenham. New studios are being built at Dagenham, Elstree, and Reading. Major, sophisticated investment funds such as Blackstone don't throw their money around, they invest strategically and where they see opportunity and in this case, it's in the UK Film Industry.

Oliver Dowden, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport commented, 'The new studio is yet another vote of confidence in the UK`S booming film and TV industry.'

Adrian Wootton, the chief executive of the BFC commented on the rise in demand, 'One thing that has become obvious is that the appetite for film and television content from consumers has gone through the roof.'

At a social event recently weekend I was talking to filmmakers and crew members and the overriding consensus was that they have never been busier.  And what is different this time is that they can’t see any of those painful 'resting times' in between assignments. This adds up to high employment coupled with ongoing inward investment into the UK economy.

Yes, the UK Film Tax Credit may be considered generous by some, but this investment by the government is producing significant gains for the UK economy.  The UK's highly successful creative industry sector is now the UK’s second most successful export after financial services.