Relaunch and Refocus on A Film and TV Studio in Walsall
Jonathan Stuart-Brown for Save The British Film Industry.
Having been proved 100% right about Pinewood Shepperton, Pinewood Studios and Shepperton Studios in every aspect and every respect, for the last five years, it is time to move on.
The two planning applications and two Public Inquiries in South Bucks have cost everyone involved a massive amount of time, many tens of millions and a huge emotional and physical toll.
The campaign – which has pushed Pinewood Studios into expanding into South Wales which five years ago they said they would never do – has not got the time nor patience to push them to expand into say the A419 near Swindon Wiltshire which is halfway between Pinewood Studios in Iver Heath and their Cardiff Studio NOR will we bother trying to get them into the centre of the golden triangle of film & tv media hubs. Walsall in the West Midlands is in the centre of West and North London, Cardiff and Salford.
Who needs Pinewood to build a film and tv studio in the centre of the UK ? We can build one in Walsall without them. The Board is still chasing its greenbelts while expanding its biggest operations in Atlanta, Malaysia, Dominican Republic, Toronto, Berlin and Hamburg. All have a few problems coming down the line for those in the know but let Pinewood Board discover this the hard way because they NEVER listen the easy way.
On the other hand far smarter minds and far smarter money is looking at the Heart of England to rekindle a genuine UK wide film industry.
A joined up UK media policy would build a film and tv studio there. This could make fair use of the West Midland contribution to the UK licence fee which with East Midlands and East Anglia is over 25%. These three regions get back £1 in £10 from the BBC bosses in London.
The film industry can pour not just millions but billions into the Midlands if sound stages are built to house big budget productions.
Just like you can have the best talent for a football industry, but no industry without football stadiums, so to have a film and tv industry you need the buildings.
Just like you can have the best conference and convention skillbase in the UK, but can not host conferences and conventions without buildings like the NEC, ICC, LG Arena and Indoor Sport Arena in Birmingham, so you need buildings to have a film industry.
Just like you can have the very best car industry workers in the world (from creative designers to canteen staff to management, sales, marketing, assembly line and security) so without a factory production line building, you will not have a car industry.
We can still get a £25 billion a year and 250 000 strong UK film industry, we just need to start in the Heart of England.
Let’s get a magnificent film and tv studio building built in Walsall and create many thousands of high quality jobs.