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As competition for viewers hots up between broadcasters and the streaming services, the film and TV sector is providing a growing source of new opportunities for film and TV studios construction. Heavy investment in new studios and filming facilities for the likes of Netflix is sustaining a strong pipeline of new contracts, particularly in southern England.

Netflix’s share price has been under pressure recently as its subscriber growth slows but there has been no let-up in its investment programme. In all, the group plans to spend over $1 billion in the UK this year creating over 5,000 jobs and some significant new film and TV studios construction activity. It recently signed a new long-term lease at the Longcross Studios in Surrey - home of James Bond - where it plans to build sound stages, studios, and production facilities.

Netflix recently signed a long-term agreement with Aviva Investors, which is the client on a £5 million scheme at Longcross to build three film studio workshops and an office, known as LXN Temporary Studios. Detailed plans have been granted and the project is at the pre-tender stage with work set to start this spring and run for eight months (Project ID: 20000686).

Studio expansions

Meanwhile, construction work on one of the film sector’s largest projects, the £121 million expansion of the south side of Shepperton Studios in Surrey, is due to start this summer. In all, it will involve the development of almost 95,000 sq m of space including sound stages, workshops, offices and utilities and work is set to run until 2024 (Project ID 18311697).

Work on the £80 redevelopment of Shepperton’s North West site, where Sir Robert McAlpine is the main contractor, started last July and will run for 21 months (Project ID: 20407134).

Construction work on another major project in the sector, the £180 million Shinfield Studios-Creative Media Hub near Reading, is also due to start this year. Detailed plans have been granted for the scheme which will involve a total of over 84,000 sq m of space including 18 film stages along with workshops and offices (Project ID: 21294782).

The approval of the Shinfield Studios development was a key factor behind a surge in the value of office sector planning approvals in the South East in the fourth quarter. They rose to £447 million, up 231% on a year earlier, according to the latest Glenigan Construction Review.

Meanwhile in Northern Ireland, construction work on the £44 million Belfast Harbour Film Studio - Phase 2 is due to start this year. This will involve a purpose-built 157,000 sq ft film studio as well as sound stages and office space. Belfast Harbour Commissioners is the client on the 18-month scheme where applications to tender are being taken (Project ID: 20360654).

Opportunities are also emerging on smaller and medium size construction contracts as the media and film sector expands. For example, detailed plans have been granted and contracts awarded on a £12 million extension of West London Film Studios in Hillingdon, west London. Work is due to start this spring and run for 13 months (Project ID: 19333518).

Significant pipeline

Long term, there are also some significant film-related developments in the construction pipeline. Outline plans have been granted and design work is underway on the £500 million Screen Industries Global Growth development at Pinewood Studios in south Bucks. This involves up to 70,000 sq m of space - almost half of which will be film production buildings - alongside new business and education ‘hubs. Work on the project could start in spring 2024 and run for two years (Project ID: 20368819).

Elsewhere in south Bucks, a public consultation has been staged and a planning application is set to be submitted on the £196 million Marlow Studio Project. It will involve 140,000 sq m of film production buildings being built on a former landfill site outside the town with work potentially starting in summer 2023 (Project ID: 21328661).

Glenigan customers can see details of all new film and TV construction contracts if part of your subscription.

Not a Glenigan customer but would like to see detailed project information for every new film and TV construction opportunity? Request a free demo of Glenigan today so we can show the size of the opportunity for your business.

Not a Glenigan Customer?

Request a free demo of Glenigan today so we can show the size of the opportunity for your business.